Nelly Bay

Travel Guide
Nelly Bay featuring general coastal views and a sandy beach

Snorkel among coral reefs, stroll over golden sands, dine in style or simply relax as you adjust to Magnetic Island’s slower pace in this charming gateway bay.

Nestled between ocean and rugged hills, Nelly Bay is an attractive island village and is only 20 minutes away from Townsville by ferry. While only small, Nelly Bay provides all the services you may need to make the most of your time on the island. That’s because its marina is the gateway to the rest of Magnetic Island and most visitor services operate from here.

Enjoy the view of the island as you arrive on the ferry. The Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal and marina are in the northeast of Nelly Bay, while the beach stretches down the island’s southwest coast.

Take a stroll along the beach and take in the views across the ocean to the mainland. Put on a mask and snorkel and marvel at the coral and marine life of the fringing reef that runs down the length of the beach. Afterwards, relax with a picnic or barbecue in the parklands at the northern end of the beach and let the kids run wild in the children's playground. Coin-operated barbecues and picnic tables are provided.

Learn about the underwater world with a visit to the little Aquasearch Aquarium, that specializes in the region’s giant clams. Let the kids try and find Nemo amongst the clown fish that hide within anemones. Touch tanks allow visitors to interact with different marine creatures.

There are walking tracks for you to explore from Nelly Bay too. Look for the koalas and rock wallabies that are commonly seen on the island.

After all the activities, treat yourself to a meal or a drink at a café or restaurant with a view. The year-round tropical climate provides a good excuse for an ice cream or cold drink. It’s also ideal for al fresco dining along the waterfront, even on a winter’s night.

If you find all this too hard to leave behind, use Nelly Bay as your base while you explore more of Magnetic Island by booking your accommodations here. To get around, simply take a taxi, a transfer bus or rent a car from Nelly Bay’s ferry terminal.

Peppers Blue on Blue
Peppers Blue on Blue
4.5 out of 5
123 Sooning Street, Nelly Bay, QLD
The price is AU$195 per night from 18 Oct. to 18 Oct.
Situated on the waterfront, this luxury hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Magnetic Island National Park, Nelly Bay Beach and Nelly Bay Habitat Reserve. Alma Bay ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (645 reviews)
"Great location Very friendly, helpful staff Clean accommodation Will be back"

Reviewed on 30 Jun. 2021

Peppers Blue on Blue
Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
4 out of 5
146 Sooning Street, Nelly Bay, QLD
Situated in Nelly Bay, this luxury aparthotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Magnetic Island National Park, Nelly Bay Beach and Nelly Bay Habitat Reserve. Alma Bay ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (235 reviews)
Great views....disappointing amenities
"Expensive apartment and very light on for amenities given it had a full kitchen and laundry. Broken saucepan. No big bowls for fruit or oven proof bowls for heating things up. Shelf in oven so badly damaged you can’t pull it out to change shelves. 1 sachet of laundry liquid for entire stay and 2 ..."

Reviewed on 1 Apr. 2021

Get rates
Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
Island Leisure Resort
Island Leisure Resort
4 out of 5
6 Kelly Street, Nelly Bay, QLD
Situated in Nelly Bay, this beach aparthotel is 0.4 mi (0.6 km) from Magnetic Island National Park and 2 mi (3.2 km) from Magnetic Island Golf Course. Radical ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (324 reviews)
"Would return in a second. No issues with a late arrival, great private/public amenities, resort in great condition, cheery staff helpful in booking trips and providing advice to make the most of your stay."

Reviewed on 24 May 2021

Get rates
Island Leisure Resort
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
4 out of 5
146 Sooning Street, Nelly Bay, QLD
Situated in Nelly Bay, this luxury aparthotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Magnetic Island National Park, Nelly Bay Beach and Nelly Bay Habitat Reserve. Alma Bay ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (235 reviews)
Great views....disappointing amenities
"Expensive apartment and very light on for amenities given it had a full kitchen and laundry. Broken saucepan. No big bowls for fruit or oven proof bowls for heating things up. Shelf in oven so badly damaged you can’t pull it out to change shelves. 1 sachet of laundry liquid for entire stay and 2 ..."

Reviewed on 1 Apr. 2021

Grand Mercure Apartments Magnetic Island
Island Leisure Resort
Island Leisure Resort
4 out of 5
6 Kelly Street, Nelly Bay, QLD
Situated in Nelly Bay, this beach aparthotel is 0.4 mi (0.6 km) from Magnetic Island National Park and 2 mi (3.2 km) from Magnetic Island Golf Course. Radical ...
4.6/5 Wonderful! (324 reviews)
"Would return in a second. No issues with a late arrival, great private/public amenities, resort in great condition, cheery staff helpful in booking trips and providing advice to make the most of your stay."

Reviewed on 24 May 2021

Island Leisure Resort
Island Palms Resort
Island Palms Resort
4 out of 5
13 The Esplanade, Nelly Bay, QLD
With direct access to the beach, this Nelly Bay apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Nelly Bay Beach, Magnetic Island National Park and Nelly Bay ...
4.8/5 Exceptional! (28 reviews)
"Maggie Island is a magnificent location! The beach is so close. Great accommodation and activities, perfect for families. Quiet location and close to the supermarket chemist and coffee shops. Fantastic dining at Man Friday’s Mexican restaurant. The perfect island getaway and fun for the entire ..."

Reviewed on 2 Oct. 2020

Island Palms Resort
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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