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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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.

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?

Dugong Sanctuary - Clairview

Clairview, Isaac Area
Free Entry
In 1997, the Great Barrier Reef Ministerial Council established Clairview (a small beach town approximately 1.5 hours south of Mackay) as a dugong sanctuary. Often dugongs can be spotted when they surface to breathe from the shore, or in the water, when in a kayak, boat or other recreational vessel - so keep an eye out for these majestic creatures!

Slade Point

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Slade Point is a short five minute drive from Mackay Harbour, and is one of the few locations in the region where you can enjoy both a stunning sunrise and sublime sunset. Slade Point Reserve lies at Lamberts Beach, stretching 73 hectares and conserving one of the last remaining areas of coastal dunes and paperbark wetlands in the Mackay region.

Romantic Retreat

Multiple Locations
Sneak off for a long weekend of love. Treat your special someone to a romantic getaway with a secluded island adventure, fine dining, luxurious accommodation and unforgettable experiences. It's the perfect blend of seclusion and surprises.

Bundoora Dam

Middlemount, Isaac Area
Free Entry
Beautiful Bundoora Dam is located approximately 28 kilometres south-west of Middlemount on Connection Road, which links Middlemount and Dysart with Tieri and Capella. The man-made dam was constructed on German Creek and is near the German Creek Coal Mine.

Mount Elliot, Bowling Green Bay National Park

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Rugged mountains rise abruptly from the wetlands, saltpans and mangroves of the coastal plain, south of Townsville, in the Mount Eliot section of Bowling Green Bay National Park. Mount Elliot reaches a height of 1,210 metres, jutting out of the surrounding coastal plain and dominating the landscape, and Alligator Creek descends in a series of cascades, deep pools and waterfalls.

Basil Bay on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
The beautiful Basil Bay is Keswick Island's prime swimming beach. Located on the western side of the island, Basil Bay boasts crystal clear water at high tide, crisp white sand and gentle shade trees - making it an idyllic spot to enjoy your quintessential island adventure.

Cape Hillsborough – A Low Tide Fishing Adventure

Multiple Locations
Low tide in Cape Hillsborough often reveals many overlooked land-based fishing spots for visiting anglers. This fishing adventure takes advantage of the low tide and shows you some of Cape Hillsborough’s best tourist attractions.

Lake Barfield

Hay Point, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Lake Barfield is located between the bustling beachside communities of Half Tide and Salonika Beach, near the Hay Point Coal Terminal. It is a small, picturesque lake which provides peaceful waters for a variety of fish, bird and animal life.
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7 Nature Experiences in The Mackay Region

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