From younger families to mature-age travellers, cruise holidays are a great way to take a break.
And the best part? Queensland’s climate is perfect for cruising all year-round, and there’s a line-up of places just waiting to be explored. So, pack your sense of adventure (and sea legs) and discover some of the things to see at some of these Queensland ports.
Editor’s note: Queensland has many ports including Mooloolaba, Fraser Island, Hervey Bay, Bundaberg, Mackay and The Whitsundays.
With a subtropical climate that lends itself to alfresco living, Brisbane is an urban city with a welcoming vibe. Outdoor dining is a-plenty here, with must-dos including James Street in Fortitude Valley and Howard Smith Wharves under the Story Bridge. If you’re looking for adventure, make sure to see the city from all angles on tours with Riverlife Adventure Centre, Brisbane by Bicycle and Story Bridge Adventure Climb. Culture vultures will find art galleries, museums and live performances in Brisbane’s arts and culture hub, South Bank. Whether you’re a dedicated surfer or a sophisticated foodie, a day trip to the Gold Coast is a must. Learn to surf on one of the iconic beaches, visit a theme park or explore the green behind the gold in the Hinterland. You can also connect with local Indigenous culture and take a guided tour with Jellurgal Aboriginal Centre through Burleigh Heads National Park and discover the significance of the area.
Cairns & Great Barrier Reef
Where World Heritage-listed icons meet, Cairns & Great Barrier Reef is a nature-lover’s playground. Exploring here goes deeper; learn about the local Indigenous cultures through guided tours of rainforests, gorges, galleries, beaches and ancient rock art. The Mossman Gorge Centre, Walkabout Cultural Adventures, Culture Connect, Rainforestation Nature Park and Dreamtime Dive & Snorkel are some of the must-do experiences. An hour north of Cairns lies Port Douglas, recently awarded a world-first Ecotourism Australia ECO Destination Certification. Find waterfront dining and shopping surrounded by unspoilt nature, including easy access to the Great Barrier Reef on one of the many tours.
With everything from the islands, to rainforests, national parks and the Great Barrier Reef, Townsville is a natural paradise. In town, take a bite at the buzzing cafes, spot local art in the galleries or take a dip at the free water playground at The Strand. A trek to the top of Castle Hill is perfect for panoramic views of the city. The Reef HQ Great Barrier Reef Aquarium is the best way to see the reef without getting wet; or, if you’re wanting to go below the surface, the Museum of Underwater Art is a must-do for keen divers, or Magnetic Island for snorkellers. For a truly outback encounter, head to Texas Longhorn Wagon Tours and Safaris to sample damper and meet ‘JR’, the 2013 Guinness World Record holder for the bull with the longest horns.
To learn more about taking a holiday in Queensland, visit queensland.com.