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Illawong Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area

A serene and peaceful coastline awaits at Illawong Beach.

Kilometres of sandy shoreline as well as off and on dog leash areas make Illawong Beach a popular choice for sunrise strolls. At low tide, the ripples in the sand stretch for kilometres, where small blue soldier crabs can be seen scuttling across the surface.

Avid fishermen cast from the beach or into the mangrove-lined creeks, a popular local fishing spot. Windsurfers can often be seen at this beach, with the view of nearby islands and the Hay Point Coal Terminal in the distance.

Illawong Beach is home to Quota Park, with public facilities including toilets, barbecues, picnic tables and a playground. There is also public fitness equipment at Quota Park for those looking for variety to their workout.

A colourful flower garden at Quota Park is often home to many colourful butterflies.

A nearby oceanside resort offers accommodation and dining options.

Facilities

  • BBQ Facilities
  • Car park
Illawong Drive
Mackay, Mackay Area
Queensland
Australia

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Pioneer Valley, The

Eungella, Mackay Area
Free Entry
A wonderland of waterfalls, lush flora and volcanic boulder formations contrast against a tapestry of sugar cane fields as you head through The Pioneer Valley and Eungella National Park. Apart from being one of the richest sugar cane growing areas in Australia, this valley is by far one of the most picturesque in Australia, encompassing many rural townships where warm hospitality and delicious food can be enjoyed. Small towns to stop in along the way include Marian, Mirani, Pinnacle, Finch Hatton and finally, Eungella. Marian, the gateway to the valley, is home to the region's largest sugar mill. Call into Melba House, a historic house and accredited Visitor Information Centre situated on the banks of the Pioneer River, to discover the marital house of famous Australian opera singer Dame Nellie Melba. A trip to Finch Hatton Gorge is a must-do. Walk the well formed tracks to Araluen Cascades and the Wheel of Fire Waterfalls and swim in clear rock pools as water cascades from above. Also available here is zip lining over rainforest canopy and scuba diving in platypus waters. Explore the Pioneer Valley via self-drive or with a guided tour.

Gooseponds, North Mackay

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
The Gooseponds in North Mackay are a combination of popular walking tracks around a large central wetland lagoon, an initiative of Mackay Regional Council's 10,000 steps program. There are also a number of exercise stations along the walk giving fitness fanatics a varied workout. The ponds are home to a variety of bird life, including geese, ducks and pelicans. As a designated off leash area there is plenty of open space for your pet to play. The walk also passes the popular Goosepond dog park, giving dog owners a variety of options for entertaining their pooch. The Gooseponds Walk pathway in North Mackay starts behind Wheeler Drive, Glenella and stretches through to Evans Avenue. The walking trail passes under the Bruce Highway, offering a safe crossing option, and includes multiple access points and a few large loops along the way, totalling close to 8 kilometres of shared pathway. For shorter walk options, begin your walk from Walter's Parade, from the 'Goose Walk' turnoff on Malcomson Street.

Far Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Far Beach is a popular walking beach with locals, recognised for its tranquillity and soft white sand. At low tide an expansive sand flat is exposed giving walkers kilometres of beach to meander. The beach provides expansive views, from Hay Point to the south and toward Flat and Round Top Islands. Nearby resorts provide options for accommodation and dining. Far Beach is one of the nearest beaches to the Mackay City Centre, only a five minute drive away. A recreational area, Quota Park, fringes part of the beach at Binnington Esplanade and includes a playground, fitness equipment, picnic tables, barbecues and public toilets. There is also a beautiful flower garden located there, popular for being home to many butterflies. Northern Far Beach between Evans Street and Bridge Road is a designated off-leash dog friendly area. The southern end of Far Beach is accessible through sand dunes via four wheel drive, and it a popular location for fisherman at the Shellgrit Creek mouth.

Lamberts Lookout

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Overlooking Lamberts Beach, the Cumberland Islands and Slade Point, Lamberts lookout offers stunning views especially at sunset. This is also a popular viewing platform to see the migrating whales as they breach and play off the coast of Mackay. This beautiful location is also one of the few places in Mackay you can watch both a sunrise and a sunset, and is a popular location for wedding photography. The lookout also provides views toward a rustic old water tower. Easy parking available at the lookout and shady areas, picnic tables, play equipment and barbecues are all available at Ram Chandra Park beside Lamberts Beach. Lamberts Beach, Lamberts Lookout and Ram Chandra Park can all be found on Pacific Esplanade, Slade Point.

Slade Point

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Slade Point is a short five minute drive from Mackay Harbour, and is one of the few locations in the region where you can enjoy both a stunning sunrise and sublime sunset. Slade Point Reserve lies at Lamberts Beach, stretching 73 hectares and conserving one of the last remaining areas of coastal dunes and paperbark wetlands in the Mackay region. Visitors can walk through the reserve. Lamberts Lookout perched above Lamberts Beach provides an excellent vantage point to view the spectacular coastline, including passing whales during migration season. Ram Chandra Park provides picnic tables and barbecue facilities, overlooking beautiful Slade Bay, for a relaxing beach barbecue dinner. The beach near McReady's Creek is a favourite haunt for mackerel and reef fish.

Illawong Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
A serene and peaceful coastline awaits at Illawong Beach. Kilometres of sandy shoreline as well as off and on dog leash areas make Illawong Beach a popular choice for sunrise strolls. At low tide, the ripples in the sand stretch for kilometres, where small blue soldier crabs can be seen scuttling across the surface. Avid fishermen cast from the beach or into the mangrove-lined creeks, a popular local fishing spot. Windsurfers can often be seen at this beach, with the view of nearby islands and the Hay Point Coal Terminal in the distance. Illawong Beach is home to Quota Park, with public facilities including toilets, barbecues, picnic tables and a playground. There is also public fitness equipment at Quota Park for those looking for variety to their workout. A colourful flower garden at Quota Park is often home to many colourful butterflies. A nearby oceanside resort offers accommodation and dining options.

Shoal Point

Shoal Point, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Shoal Point is the northern-most community of the Northern Beaches group, with a visually spectacular coastal beach. At low tide, the beach can almost be mistaken as a small sweeping desert. The sand stretches for hundreds of metres, allowing a close-up view of Green Reef Island. Watch as thousands of tiny blue Soldier Crabs scuttle along the mud flats, burying themselves into the sand. The 'lone tree' found toward the northern end of the beach is one of Mackay's most 'instagrammable' images. Take a blanket, choose a spot to dig your toes into the sand and watch a sublime sunset. Boats can be launched straight off the beach. An esplanade park provides shade, picnic tables, a playground and barbecues as well as picturesque views of the beach.

Eimeo Beach

Eimeo, Mackay Area
Free Entry
In a sheltered bay with powder soft sand, Eimeo Beach is a favourite destination of visitors and locals for fun in the sun. The beach is seasonally patrolled during the summer months by volunteer lifeguards. Eimeo Beach is a 15 minute drive from Mackay's Central Business District. Heading north on the Bruce Highway, turn right toward Northern Beaches on the Mackay-Bucasia Road. Turn right onto Eimeo Road at the roundabout near the Northern Beaches Shopping Centre. Drive under a canopy of mango trees at Mango Avenue, a heritage-listed attraction that stretches between Whittles Lane and Heidke Street, forming a shaded canopy above the streetscape. Enjoy an ocean side picnic at the Eimeo Esplanade, or dine with an elevated coastal view at the nearby Eimeo Pacific Hotel. The pub's enviable position overlooks the Coral Sea and Eimeo Beach with views toward the southern Whitsunday islands. The Eimeo Esplanade includes a children's play area, picnic tables, large trees for shade, public toilets, fresh water showers, drinking fountains and barbecue facilities.

Lamberts Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Lamberts Beach is seasonally patrolled and the nearby Lambert's Lookout offers fabulous sea views out to the Cumberland Islands. It's also a popular spot for surfers when the swell is right, and a great whale watching platform during the winter months. Shady areas, picnic tables, public toilets, showers, play equipment and barbecues are all available at Lamberts Beach, at Ram Chandra Park. Slade Point Reserve is near Lamberts Beach, stretching 73 hectares and conserving one of the last remaining areas of coastal dunes and paperbark wetlands in the Mackay region. Visitors can walk through the reserve. Lambert's Beach, Lambert's Lookout and Ram Chandra Park can all be found on Pacific Esplanade, Slade Point. Lamberts Beach and Slade Point, on the other side of McReady's Creek are often favourite haunts for mackerel and reef fish. There is a resort hotel located at Slade Point for accommodation across the beach and ocean view dining.

Harbour Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Adjacent to Mackay's multimillion dollar Reef Marina development, popular Harbour Beach is a favourite beach with locals and visitors alike. Only a five minute drive from Mackay's Central Business District, it is home to the Mackay Surf Lifesaver Club and is seasonally patrolled. Harbour Beach is home to one of Mackay's premium events, the Mackay Harbour Beach Horse Races, combining the thrill of the races with the fun and sun of the beach. Harbour Beach is located near the Mackay Harbour Breakwater, offering multiple fishing locations. Jew, Mackerel, Trevally, Bream and Tuna are all caught near the harbour waters. This is also a pet-friendly beach, however dogs are required to remain on their lead during your stay in the area. There are two nearby park areas with playgrounds, shaded picnic tables and barbecue facilities and public toilets. Delicious dine-in and takeaway meals are also available at the marina precinct.
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