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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Pioneer Valley and Eungella National Park, The

Multiple Locations
A wonderland of waterfalls, refreshingly cool rainforest and the chance to see a platypus in the wild awaits in Eungella National Park. Australia's longest stretch of sub-tropical rainforest, Eungella, (pronounced young-ge-lah), is a must-see attraction.

Finch Hatton Gorge

Finch Hatton, Mackay Area
Free Entry
A wonderful landscape of waterfalls, lush flora and volcanic boulder formations make Finch Hatton Gorge a must-see attraction. There are many walking tracks which weave through sub-tropical rainforest.

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.

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.

Bluewater Trail

Multiple Locations
See highlights of Mackay along the Bluewater Trail, a shared bicycle and pedestrian walkway which connects art, historic architecture and points of interest with natural beauty. The Bluewater Trail is approximately 20 kilometres in length, linking key attractions, including the picturesque Mackay Regional Botanical Gardens and the Bluewater Lagoon to Mackay's natural features, the Pioneer River and Town Beach.

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.

Natural Wonderland

Multiple Locations
Abundant in natural beauty, Mackay is home to a plethora of parks, gardens and nature walks that showcase its unique subtropical flora and fauna. You don’t even need to travel out of the city to experience the beauty of nature.

Cape Hillsborough National Park

Cape Hillsborough, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Cape Hillsborough National Park is one of the most striking and peaceful places on the Central Queensland coast. It's teeming with life and diverse habitats—from rainforest and eucalypts, to mangroves, beaches and rocky headlands.

Lamberts Beach

Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Lamberts Beach is seasonally patrolled and the nearby Lambert's Lookout offers fabulous sea views out to the Cumberland Islands. It's also a popular spot for surfers when the swell is right, and a great whale watching platform during the winter months.

48 hours in Cape Hillsborough and The Hibiscus Coast

Multiple Locations
For a holiday that will immerse you in all kinds of nature, explore what lies to the north of the sugar cane capital with an overnight escape to Cape Hillsborough. Less than 50 kilometres north of the Mackay city centre, you'll find an ancient volcanic landscape, untouched beaches and 1012 hectares of national park that make up Cape Hillsborough.
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7 Nature Experiences in The Mackay Region

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