Rubyvale

If you love gemstones and jewellery then chances are you're going to love this town. Set in the heart of the Sapphire Gemfields, Rubyvale is home to several gift shops where you'll find everything from sapphire necklaces to sparkling diamond rings.

Made from 'billy boulders' and ironbark logs, the Rubyvale Hotel is a quirky place worth checking out. Then head underground on a mine tour where you'll be able to enjoy cooler temperatures as well as a lesson in sapphire mining. Explore the tunnels with your guide before trying your luck at one of several fossicking parks found near to the town. Thankfully at these parks the staff have already done the digging for you - so all that's left to do is grab a bucket and start sieving. Whether you get lucky or not, you should definitely treat yourself to a meal and a beer at the local pub before heading to your next destination.

Rubyvale
Rubyvale, Central Highlands Area
Queensland
Australia

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Bees on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
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Keswick Island is home to thriving hives of purebred Caucasian bees. Unlike bees on the Australian mainland, these bees are free of many other diseases and are sometimes used as breeding stock for the mainland colonies.

Keswick Island Dive Site

Keswick Island,
Mackay is not generally well known as a dive destination, but with offshore islands and reefs it certainly has the potential for some great diving. However, there is one location off Mackay that is regularly dived, the wonderful Keswick Island.

Birdwatching on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
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Keswick Island is a bird watcher's paradise. The island is home to many different bird species, with sightings of at least 33 different birds documented to date - an impressive variety for an island of Keswick's size.

Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Most visitors to Mackay are surprised to learn that one of the southern-most Whitsunday Islands can be visited directly from the Mackay coast. Keswick Island is situated 32 kilometres from Mackay and is accessible via the water from the Mackay Marina, or by air.

Snorkelling on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
The Great Barrier Reef coral fringes Keswick and provides magnificent snorkelling, especially at Connie Bay and Coral Gardens. Keswick's coral reef offers something for everyone, from swim-through caves and deep canyons to wide shallows, teeming with marine life.

Basil Bay on Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
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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.

The Singapore Shipwreck Dive Site - Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
The Singapore was bound for Sydney from Hong Kong when she struck what is now called 'Singapore Rock' sometime in January 1877. Fortunately, no lives were lost. The Singapore was a 964 ton single screw steamer with a length of 87 metres and a width of 10 metres.

The Cremer Shipwreck Dive Site - Keswick Island

Keswick Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
The Cremer was a 50 metre passenger and cargo ship that was employed in trading with Indonesia, Singapore and China. It ran aground off St Bees Island (nearby Keswick Island) during a major storm in September 1943.

Llewellyn Dive Site

East Mackay, Mackay Area
Free Entry
Exciting wreck diving is to be had at the historic 'Llewellyn' site, east of Mackay on the Great Barrier Reef. This 34 metre long, single screw coastal steamer was last seen departing Cape Capricorn Lighthouse on 17 July 1919 and disappeared during heavy gales as it sailed from Rockhampton to Bowen.

Brampton Islands National Park

Brampton Island, Mackay Area
Free Entry
This park has been impacted by recent severe weather events in Queensland. Please check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions. Brampton Island National Park, at the southern entrance to the Whitsunday Passage, consists of Brampton and Carlisle islands.
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