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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Pelorus and Orpheus Islands

Palm Island, Hinchinbrook Area
Pelorus and Orpheus Islands are a popular location for day trips off Townsville. Part of the Palm Island Group, 80 kilometres north of Townsville, access to these continental island is from Lucinda. All around Pelorus and Orpheus Islands are rocky reefs covered in hard coral, soft coral, gorgonians and sea whips in depths from 12 metres to 25 metres.

Ponytail Falls

Cardstone, Cassowary Coast Area
Nestled in the rainforest along the Tully River, Ponytail Falls is the perfect place to spend those hot, humid days. There’s two ways to reach Ponytail Falls – drive or raft. By car, follow the river downstream from Cardstone Weir and look out for the number 11 painted on the road.

Dunk Island

Mission Beach, Cassowary Coast Area
Dunk Island a stunning island just off the coast of Mission Beach in north Queensland. Most of the island is national park, with unique tracts of rainforests, pristine beaches and abundant species of wildlife.

Balgal Beach

Balgal Beach, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Balgal Beach forms part of the popular Northern Beaches district of Townsville North Queensland. Offering a superb sand beach and secure swimming in the stinger net from November to May, Balgal is ideal for a relaxing day by the ocean or a fun way to spend time with the whole family.

Broadwater, Abergowrie State Forest

Trebonne, Hinchinbrook Area
Free Entry
In the scenic Herbert River Valley, Abergowrie State Forest features tropical rainforest, open eucalypt forest and exotic pine plantations adjacent to the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. Broadwater is a large grassy clearing, shaded by tall eucalypts, beside a cool waters of Broadwater Creek.

Groper Creek

Home Hill, Burdekin Area
Free Entry
Groper Creek is a laidback location, where you can sit back, relax and unwind. You can launch your tinnie from the boat ramp, or fish from the jetty. The area is well known for its fantastic fishing and crabbing.

Bushland Beach

Bushland Beach, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Bushland Beach is a beautiful stretch of beach in a suburban area, with visitor accommodation and facilities available. Ideal for fishing, swimming, walking and water activities. Low tide uncovers an old wooden shipwreck.

Djiru National Park

Mission Beach, Cassowary Coast Area
Free Entry
Djiru National Park, near Mission Beach, protects some of the last remaining lowland rainforest in the Wet Tropics, including a rare patch of Licuala fan palm forest. It is also one of the few places you're likely to see the endangered southern cassowary.

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.

The Strand

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Immerse yourself in the Townsville way of life and discover The Strand, Townsville's thriving beach foreshore! With a relaxed, yet energetic vibe, The Strand is bursting with activities to excite the whole family.
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