Wildlife and Nature in Mackay

Those with a penchant for nature need no introduction to Mackay. Famed for its unique encounters with Australian wildlife, it’s a region smothered by some of the most jaw-dropping natural sceneries and adventures in the sunshine state.

Wildlife experiences in Mackay 

Mackay is popping up on the bucket lists of travellers who want to get up close with nature and wildlife, camp out under the stars, wet a line and hang with some friendly locals. You'll want to be an early bird to catch sunrise with the wallabies who frolic (or jump) along the beach at Cape Hillsborough National Park. Venture down the coastline to the waters of Clairview, south of Sarina, is a designated Dugong sanctuary and a top spot to spy the mermaid of the sea. Spot a platypus in Eungella National Park or take a river scuba with them – yep, this is a real thing!  

Get your nature on

Think of Mackay as Mother Nature's playground and let the great outdoors entertain you. On a hot day, you can’t beat the rock pools of Finch Hatton Gorge. If you’ve got little ones with you, park up and take the short bushwalk to the bottom where most of the family’s hang out; keen walkers can hit up the more challenging Araluen Cascades and Wheel of Fire tracks to work up a sweat. If a hike's what you like, witness the epic view from the Sky Window walk of Eungella National Park. Off the mainland, Keswick Island is the place to be if you want to fill your day with beautiful beaches, snorkelling and reef adventures on the Great Barrier Reef with day trips available via boat or seaplane. 



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Rainforest Scuba

Multiple Locations
Enjoy this world first experience diving in the rainforest in crystal clear waters where platypus live and play. Will you be one of the few in the water at the same time as a platypus in natural conditions?

Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens

West Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Located just five kilometres from the Mackay City Centre, the Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens showcases the beautiful tropical flora from Mackay and the Whitsundays, along with other beautiful Australian native and exotic plants from similar climates around the world.

Platypus Beach, Mirani

Mirani, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Platypus Beach is a popular swimming hole for locals and tourists, a little slice of sandy paradise on the bank of the Pioneer River, near the country town of Mirani. This is a beautiful location to enjoy swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding and picnics.

Pacific Coast Way - Mackay, Cape Hillsborough and Seaforth

Multiple Locations
Serene, sand-strewn shorelines, the rustling of palm fronds in the sea breeze and the gentle lull of the tide; it’s time to leave your worries behind and relax in the tranquil tropics. As you head North from Mackay, a world of adventure awaits.

Whale Watching on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Humpback Whales can be frequently seen around Keswick Island during their annual migration through the Whitsundays between the months of July to September. Seeing the whales frolicking nearby, or guiding a newborn calf through the protected waters of Egremont Passage, is a truly magical experience.

Blissful Northern Beaches

Multiple Locations
A selection of the Mackay region's most popular beaches can be found dotted throughout Mackay's Northern Beaches. Serene beachside communities with enviable coastlines and carefree lifestyles. Sublime sandy shores, sparkling blue water and the fact that these beaches are usually quiet are what attracts visitors to experience the peaceful nature of these communities.

Forest Flying

Multiple Locations
The Forest Flying eco-tourism experience allows you to view the pristine rainforest of Finch Hatton Gorge from a unique angle. Suspended in your personal harness up to 25 metres above the forest floor, you can glide along the cable through the rainforest canopy.

Cathu State Forest

Yalboroo, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Along the rugged Clarke Range behind the Whitsunday coast is Cathu State Forest, where you'll find distinctive poplar gum woodlands and exotic Caribbean pine plantations on the creek flats and dense rainforest, hoop pine plantations and tall wet eucalypt forest along the range.

Grendon Park

Hay Point, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Nestled between Half Tide and Salonika Beaches is Grendon Park, named after the original owners of the land prior to its development. Facilities include toilets, picnic tables, shelter, barbecue and a playground.

The Heritage and Mining Trail

Multiple Locations
Tracing the passage of coal from Queensland's Bowen Basin mines, to the port of export to overseas customers, those with an interest in resources and minerals will enjoy The Heritage and Mining Trail of the Mackay region.
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7 Nature Experiences in The Mackay Region

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