Great Barrier Reef

With more than 100 ways to experience the Great Barrier Reef, Tropical North Queensland offers the ultimate personalised adventure on the world's largest and most spectacular coral reef system.

Swim with dwarf minke whales on the ribbon reefs off Port Douglas, snorkel with turtles at a sand cay, dive among colourful coral gardens on the outer reef or camp on a deserted island to watch the sun rise over the Great Barrier Reef.

Join a live-aboard dive boat for days and nights of underwater exploration, keep your hair dry on a helmet dive or zoom along on an underwater scooter. Go under your own steam paddling to a nearby island from the beautiful Cape Tribulation beach or board a helicopter for a breathtaking aerial view of the reef.

Enjoy the seclusion of a luxurious island resort in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef where you can leisurely explore a colourful underwater world, dine with the Coral Sea lapping your toes, discover marine birdlife or gaze at the ocean while you laze in a spa.

Tropical North Queensland is the closest destination to the Great Barrier Reef. Travel to a pontoon on the outer edge of the reef, dive straight from the back of the boat or swim out from an island to see some of the 1500 species of fish, 4000 species of molluscs and 400 types of coral that live in this diverse ecosystem.

Try an introductory dive to see the reef and its colourful marine life up close or learn to dive so you can complete multiple underwater adventures as a certified diver. The enormous variety of diving experiences includes plummeting Coral Sea wall dives, diving alongside giant potato cod, joining reef sharks at night or witnessing the annual coral spawn.

Diving, snorkelling, sailing, cruising and island hopping are all part of everyday life in Tropical North Queensland, the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef.

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Places to Visit
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Townsville Town Common Conservation Park

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
The park's wildlife viewing areas and walking and mountain bike trails offer a range of nature-based recreation activities close to the centre of Townsville. The park features deep-water lagoons and seasonal wetlands, coastal woodlands and vine thickets, and sheltered beaches fringed by rocky headlands.

Magnetic Island National Park

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Rocky granite headlands and towering hoop pines stand sentinel over tranquil sandy bays on this rugged, mountainous island covered with open eucalypt woodlands and surrounded by coral reefs. The island is easily accessible from Townsville and is noted for its abundant wildlife and varied history.

Fishing at Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Magnetic Island is an angler's dream with a catch virtually guaranteed! Sit back, throw in a line and enjoy the rush of reeling in your latest bite. What a catch it can be; 22-pound Coral Trout and 44-pound Spanish Mackerel are among the trophies happy fishermen have taken home.

Picnic Bay

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
With a sweeping beach, tranquil setting and the iconic jetty, Picnic Bay on Magnetic Island is a spectacular location to enjoy a relaxing swim, beachside dining or a spot of fishing on the jetty. Snorkel and explore the abundant marine life of Picnic Bay or see what you can spot from above while taking a stroll along the jetty.

Pelorus Island

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Pelorus Island, located 800 metres north of Orpheus Island in the Palms Island group is an untouched, pristine environment accessible by private boat or on a dive tour. Pelorus Island offers spectacular fringing reefs accessible straight off the beach, which make for a remarkable snorkel or dive experience.

Arcadia at Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Arcadia is the smallest of the four main bays around Magnetic Island and is surrounded by the prominent Alma Bay and Geoffrey Bay. Geoffrey Bay is a Marine National Park Zone - which means no fishing or collecting - but is great for exploring during low tide.

Wreck Diving at Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Located within the waters of the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Magnetic Island has a wealth of interesting dive sites. Some of the best places to dive are found in Geoffrey, Alma, Arthur and Florence Bays and the reef in Nelly Bay.

Cape Pallarenda Conservation Park

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Set in a scenic coastal location amongst open woodland and vine thickets, this park features an historic quarantine station, established in 1915. The station was initially used to quarantine passengers on incoming ships.

Castle Hill

Townsville, Townsville Area
  • Free WiFi
Free Entry
Just metres short of a mountain, Castle Hill is the giant pink granite monolith that stands proud in the centre of Townsville - a perfect place for visitors to orientate themselves. As well as offering vehicle access, Castle Hill provides a number of popular walking tracks, which are frequented by more than 2,500 locals a day!

"The Moltke" Dive Site

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
"The Moltke" is a wreck dive accessible from the shore on Magnetic Island. The old cargo Boat has been here for over 70 years. The structure is fairly broken up providing many corners and holes for marine life to hide in.
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Note: Information on listed products and services are provided by the operator and were correct at the time of publishing. Rates are indicative based on the minimum and maximum available prices of products and services. Please visit the operator’s website for further information. All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).