Tropical North Queensland Islands

Blessed with sand cays and tropical islands scattered across the Great Barrier, you’ll find the best island paradise to stay in luxury, camp or pop on your mask and snorkel and explore the Great Barrier Reef.

Islands of the Great Barrier Reef

Green Island

Perfect for the whole family and budget conscious travellers, Green Island is just 37 acres of forest, sand and reef. Complete with 46 luxurious hotel suites clustered under the island’s resort, you can even choose to spend a night (or two). And, here’s how you make the most of your trip to Green Island.

Fitzroy Island

Home of 2018’s best beach; Nudey Beach (according to Australia’s top beach expert), Fitzroy Island offers a little something for every visitor. From walking trails to snorkel spots, you’ll find lots to do on and around the island. This 48 hour guide can also help you plan your next trip.

Lizard Island

Perched on a small coral cay, you’ll find the luxury island refuge of Lizard Island. With world-class dive sites like the Cod Hole nearby, you’ll have lots of opportunity to see the marine life of the Great Barrier Reef. And when you surface to breathe, explore 24 private beaches.

Bedarra Island

Take off those watches, when you visit Bedarra Island you needn’t measure time. Put your feet up in your private villa or explore 45 hectares of forest and beach. And when you’re feeling peckish, you can indulge on a tropical breakfast buffet, customised lunch and multi-course dinner.

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Palm Cove

Palm Cove, Cairns Area
Relax under a coconut palm, paddle around a Great Barrier Reef island, enjoy a spa treatment or delight in a fusion of tropical delicacies. It is all part of life at Palm Cove, an intimate slice of paradise boasting a plethora of holiday experiences.

Green Island National Park

Green Island, Cairns Area
Free Entry
This small rainforest-clad coral cay is surrounded by coral reefs and is one of the Great Barrier Reef's most popular destinations. A true coral cay, it was formed over thousands of years by the build-up of sand and coral rubble deposited on the calm side of a platform reef.

Snake Pit Dive Site

Cairns, Cairns Area
Free Entry
The Snake Pit is located inside the Ribbon Reefs, not far from Lizard Island, and is a dive site where divers are guaranteed to encounter an olive sea snake or three. Although highly venomous, olive sea snakes are fortunately quite docile and pose little threat to divers.

Low Isles

Low Isles, Douglas Area
Situated 15 kilometres north-east of Port Douglas, the Low Isles comprise a four acre coral cay surrounded by 55 acres of reef. The reefs are very close to the island, which makes snorkelling an easy and enjoyable experience.

Cape Tribulation

Cape Tribulation, Douglas Area
Stepping straight on to the beach from the rainforest is a very special experience at Cape Tribulation. This extraordinarily pretty stretch of the Daintree National Park is where you can climb aboard a fast boat to explore the Great Barrier Reef or take a kayak to nearby islands.

Wreck Bay Dive Site

Port Douglas, Douglas Area
Wreck Bay is located on the eastern side of Agincourt Reef No.3, off Port Douglas, and is a site that can only be dived when conditions are calm. The remains of an old fishing boat gave this site its name, but with little of the wreck to see divers will have more fun exploring the caves, gutters, ledges and bommies at this fascinating dive site.

Flagstaff Hill

Port Douglas, Douglas Area
Get sweeping views of rainforest, reef and beach at Port Douglas’ ultimate viewing point. Just a short distance from the town’s main street, you can drive, walk or ride up the trail to the top of Flagstaff Hill and be rewarded with stunning views stretching as far as Fitzroy Island on a clear day.

Thetford Reef Dive Site

Cairns, Cairns Area
Free Entry
Thetford Reef, nestled close to the Cairns coast and just a short boat trip from the popular Green Island, is a two kilometre long burst of colour - with scattered coral heads, sandy floor areas inviting glittering schools of sea life, and lots of swim-throughs for adventure-seekers.

Tijou Reef Dive Site

Port Douglas, Douglas Area
Tijou Reef is located at the southern end of the Far Northern Reefs, so is often the first or last dive site explored on an expedition to this remote area. The sheltered western side of Tijou Reef is dotted with coral bommies and coral gardens that offer wonderful diving in depths to 30 metres.

North Horn Dive Site

Cairns, Cairns Area
The most legendary dive site at Osprey Reef is the amazing North Horn. Located at the northern tip of the reef, this site features a sloping coral shelf in depths from 12 metres to 40 metres, and walls dropping into one kilometre.
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Frankland Islands

Probably one of the most untouched island group near Cairns, it’s no wonder why the Frankland Islands tops this list of island you’ve never heard of. There are five islands in the group and although you’ll need your own boat to explore all five, you can also board a day cruise and explore the islands with a guide.

Low Isles

15km from Port Douglas is the Low Isles with shallow and protected lagoon waters perfect for beginners learning to snorkel. You’ll even spot marine turtles floating by.

Dunk Island

If you love to go off the grid, look no further than Dunk Island where more than half of the island is national park. Hike or explore walking trails, snorkel or fish and when you’re ready to call it a day, set up a tent and camp under the stars.

Torres Strait Islands

Situated off the tip of Australia, you’ll find 274 islands enriched with culture and natural beauty. Experience true island hospitality when you visit Thursday Island or taste authentic Japanese cuisine at an operating pearl farm on Friday Island. Check out these must do’s for your next visit.

Sand Cays

Mackay Cay

50km from Port Douglas, you’ll find Mackay Cay on the north west corner of the Mackay Reef on the Great Barrier Reef. It rises just metres above high tide and protects a variety of endangered plants and animal species.

Vlassof Cay

Charter a private helicopter and enjoy a beach picnic like no other on Vlasoff Cay. Have the entire cay to yourself and snorkel its surrounding reef system to see the marine life of the Great Barrier Reef.

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