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Conondale

Conondale, like many rural towns in South East Queensland, is pretty. The town might be a great spot for a chance to catch your breath during what is a very scenic drive but there is something about Conondale that is as subtle as it is magic. When travelling from Maleny, Conondale is the first opportunity to take a close-up and easy look at the river that gives its name to the valley through which it passes - the Mary River.

Just near where the Maleny-Kenilworth Road crosses the Mary River, Fritz Park offers the chance for a picnic and time to contemplate exactly why this little village is so special.

Conondale is distinctive because of its proximity to the rugged beauty of the range to its west called the Conondale Range. Within the Range a national park called Conondale National Park is an unspoilt and undeveloped park of harsh beauty. Conondale National Park protects important remnants of grassy open Eucalypt forest, tall wet sclerophyll forest and subtropical rainforest that once covered large areas of the Sunshine Coast hinterland.

The park is the central undisturbed core of an extensive area of forest reserves in the Conondale Range and an important refuge for many rare and threatened animals, including the Mary River Turtle, which, until recently, had not been discovered.

It is important to remember that this park is suited to very experienced walkers only. The turn off to the national park is about 15 kilometres north of Conondale at Sunday Creek Road. The turn is marked by a pretty park called Keith and Ivy Boon Memorial Park.

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Fitzroy Island National Park

Fitzroy Island, Cairns Area
Free Entry
This island national park, located close to the mainland, is rugged with diverse landscapes featuring granite outcrops, open woodlands, rainforest, mangroves and coral beaches. The island and its surrounding waters form part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

Mount Lewis National Park

Julatten, Mareeba Area
Free Entry
Mount Lewis, one high rainforest-clad mountains of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, is a treasure trove of unique and endemic wildlife. The area between the Mount Lewis and Atherton Tableland is especially diverse.
Free Entry
Michaelmas Cay, part of Michaelmas and Upolo Cays National Park, is one of the most important seabird breeding sites in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Michaelmas Cay is a small, low sand cay, covered by grasses and low-growing plants.

Mossman Gorge Centre

Mossman, Douglas Area
From AU$8.50 - 8.50
Visit Mossman Gorge and experience the Daintree World Heritage Rainforest with pristine waterfalls, mountains and vivid flora and fauna, all the while getting lost in its enchanting stories and rich Indigenous heritage.

Agincourt Reef

Port Douglas, Douglas Area
Free Entry
Agincourt Reef, off Port Douglas on the Great Barrier Reef, is a series of many smaller reefs with at least 16 different dive sites. The Channels offer interesting swim-throughs and caves, while The Gardens are renowned for their exceptional abundance of brightly coloured reef fish.

Hope Islands National Park

Cooktown, Cook Area
Free Entry
This island national park includes East and West Hope islands as well as Struck Island and Snapper Island. East and West Hope islands are low-lying cays. West Hope Island is a shingle cay formed from piles of loose shingle (coral debris) on which only the most hardy plants such as mangroves survive.

Snapper Island, Hope Islands National Park

Port Douglas, Douglas Area
Free Entry
This high continental island, close to Port Douglas, boasts lush vine forests, dense eucalypt forest, mangroves and white sandy beaches. The islands and surrounding waters and fringing reefs are within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

Barron Gorge National Park

Kuranda, Mareeba Area
Free Entry
Rugged mountains, ravines, tumbling waterfalls, magnificent rainforest, rich and varied wildlife, easy access and a fascinating history make Barron Gorge National Park one of Queensland’s most popular national parks.

Green Island National Park

Green Island, Cairns Area
Free Entry
This small rainforest-clad coral cay is surrounded by coral reefs and is one of the Great Barrier Reef's most popular destinations. A true coral cay, it was formed over thousands of years by the build-up of sand and coral rubble deposited on the calm side of a platform reef.

Wangetti Beach

Wangetti, Douglas Area
Local secret Wangetti Beach is just north of Palm Cove in Tropical North Queensland. Running from Slip Cliff Point to Red Cliff Point, the 4km of almost straight coastline has no facilities, with only a carpark on either end of the beach and a stretch of highway connecting them.
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