Things to do in Townsville

You’ll be surrounded by water in the Townsville region, from the crystal-clear Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef to tumbling waterfalls in lush national parks. Discover Townsville’s offshore jewel, the delightful Magnetic Island, or check in to an exclusive resort on secluded Orpheus Island.

Great Barrier Reef

Discover the secret side of the Great Barrier Reef with a day trip to dive or snorkel at remote, uncrowded reefs. The SS Yongala, one of the world’s best wreck dives, is accessible from Townsville or Ayr. You can even experience the Great Barrier Reef on land with a visit to Reef HQ near the city centre. It’s home to the world’s largest living coral aquarium, a turtle hospital and a number of conservation programs that the whole family will enjoy.

Islands

There’s an island for everyone close to Townsville: Magnetic Island for families, Hinchinbrook Island for adventure-seekers and Orpheus for couples. On family-friendly Magnetic Island, look for rock wallabies, and members of one of Australia’s largest colonies of wild koalas. Test yourself and hike the famous Thorsborne Trail on Hinchinbrook Island; relax in absolute luxury or snorkel over a giant clam nursery on Orpheus Island. For the ultimate fishing adventure, take a helicopter to a deserted island for a private heli-fishing safari.

Nature and History

There’s plenty to discover on the mainland as well. Marvel at Wallaman Falls, Australia’s highest single-drop waterfall that’s almost 270m tall, and visit one of the many national parks in the region. Hike up the goat tracks to Castle Hill, the striking pink granite monolith overlooking the town, or discover some of the other walking, hiking and mountain-biking trails that cover the region. The Townsville region also has a rich WWII history, including the Forts Walk on Magnetic Island and Jezzine Barracks on Kissing Point headland.



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Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Escape to a tropical island paradise surrounded by secluded bays, golden beaches and activities to excite everyone. With 23 beaches and bays and just a 20 minute ferry ride from Townsville, Magnetic Island has the natural beauty and serenity of an untouched paradise within a thriving community.

South Townsville

Townsville City, Townsville Area
When the sun goes down, South Townsville's Palmer Street comes alive! Following the river, this after-hours hot spot is brimming with groovy cafes, lively pubs and fine dining restaurants, sophisticated cocktail bars and hip hotels.

Burdekin

Ayr, Burdekin Area
Just one hour's drive south of Townsville is the Burdekin Shire - the sugar capital of Australia, fishing mecca, bird watching paradise and traditional homeland of the Gudjuda Aboriginal people. The Burdekin region is one of the only districts in Australia which still employs the traditional practice of burning cane prior to harvesting.

Fishing on Hinchinbrook Island

Hinchinbrook, Hinchinbrook Area
Free Entry
Discover an island with a Jurassic outlook which abounds in flora, fauna, palm fringed beaches and extensive mangrove lined waterways. Hinchinbrook Island offers extensive flats and channel systems which are home to many prime tropical sportfish.

Horseshoe Bay

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Horseshoe Bay is the premier location for watersports on Magnetic Island offering activities to excite the whole family. Along the shores of Horseshoe Bay is an array of equipment hire options including jet skis, kayaks, stand up paddle boards and more!

Townsville North Queensland

Townsville City, Townsville Area
The best holidays are the ones that leave you feeling energised and alive. Townsville North Queensland gives you that feeling with a collection of destinations and attractions to spark everyone's curiosity.

Ayr

Ayr, Burdekin Area
Situated on the north side of the mighty Burdekin River, 85 kilometres south of Townsville, the prosperous rural community of Ayr is the main town in the Burdekin Shire. This is prime sugar country, with about 80,000 hectares of land under sugar cane, and an annual production of about 1.

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 on the Great Barrier Reef.

Lady Bowen Dive Site

Mission Beach, Cassowary Coast Area
Free Entry
The Lady Bowen was a 66 metre long schooner, which hit reef almost 48 kilometres from where she eventually sank, and now sits in the ocean as a reef herself, off the coast of Mission Beach. At over 100 years old and resting under 34 metres of water, the Lady Bowen dive site is now home to amazing coral formations and a plethora of colourful and friendly marine life.

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. Most of the island is protected as national park and features a 36 kilometre network of walking tracks.
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