QUEENSLAND – WHY GO?
Fun in the sun. What more could you want? Queensland has everything from romance and indulgence to edgy adventure and an ever-present frisson of raw nature.
Queensland has a laidback, eclectic style all its own, plenty of quirky customs (cane toad and cockroach racing among them) and the warm climate is matched by the welcome you’ll get from the locals. The attitude is positive so it’s the perfect place to relax – day spa operators boast it’s where the sound of the waves is the real thing – not just a recorded CD.
Head to the top of Mt Coot-tha to put the city of Brisbane in perspective – then release your inner child outside the city at the Gold Coast theme parks. Dreamworld, Sea World, Warner Bros Movie World, Wet ‘n’ Wild and White Water World will keep you busy for days. For a tiny taste of Aussie heritage, check out the horsemanship at the Outback Spectacular.
Want romance and prefer the simple things in life? Then walk barefoot on white, powdery beaches on an island getaway – there are 74 islands in the Whitsunday group, alone. Try the Awesome Foursome at Airlie Beach – jetboat, helicopter, parasail and quad bike or feed the wild dolphins at Tangalooma. The Sunshine Coast, to the north of Brisbane, offers another escape route and is perhaps, not as peopled.
North Queensland has its own magnetism and an array of back-to-nature attractions. Diving or snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef is a must (Port Douglas makes a great base) and the lure of the lush rainforest canopy brings wildlife to the fore. Go bushwalking with a guide or take a 4WD safari in the Daintree Forest to see some of the region’s dazzling flora and fauna. It’s an awesome natural habitat, and natives in these parts include pythons, crocodiles, fruit bats and every kind of exotic bird and insect.
White powder beaches are everywhere, and while you may have to give swimming a miss in the stinger (jellyfish) season, the waters of the reef and Queensland’s glittering tropical islands are just aiting for you to dive in.