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Queensland

Australia
Surfers Paradise showing a city, a river or creek and a sunset

Hike through rainforest, explore stark Outback landscapes and dive the Great Barrier Reef in Australia’s second-largest state. 

The warm climate, long stretches of white-sand beach, tropical islands and rainforest hiking trails of Queensland are unmistakable. Visit the capital city, Brisbane, and surrounding coastal cities and towns to experience the state’s trendy bars and cafés, enjoy multicultural dining, explore wildlife parks and investigate world-class cultural precincts.

In Brisbane’s balmy climate, discover an eclectic mix of buzzing nightlife, live music, riverside parks and suburbs, each with a unique character. Shop for vintage fashion in Paddington, cool off with an artisanal ale in West End’s relaxed beer gardens and spot Queensland’s most iconic wildlife on an upriver trip to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.

An hour’s drive south of Brisbane is the Gold Coast, known for shopping, theme parks and spectacular beaches. Take a surfing lesson in the clear blue waters of Surfer’s Paradise or race your friends on the towering water slides of Wet n’ Wild theme park. Get back to nature in the hinterland rainforests of Lamington National Park or Tamborine Mountain. Encounter Queensland’s creatures at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.

North of Brisbane, find the seaside and rural communities of the Sunshine Coast. Enjoy a swim and gelato at Noosa Beach before a hike through Noosa National Park to see secluded beaches, blowholes and an occasional koala. Head inland for unusual craft, art and wine cellars in the forested mountain communities, Maleny and Mapleton.

Head farther north along the ocean to the beautiful tropical beaches of the Whitsunday Coast. Take a boat cruise to Hayman or Daydream islands to stay in five-star luxury comfort or family-friendly accommodations. Scuba dive the spectacularly colorful Great Barrier Reef just off the Whitsunday Coast.

For a taste of the Outback, head to Central Queensland to the meeting point of historic livestock routes in Longreach. See Australia’s important inland river eco-systems in the national parks or on a river cruise. Explore the Simpson Desert National Park from the dusty one-pub town of Birdsville. Pack a camera to capture Outback Queensland’s intense sunrises and sunsets.

Popular cities in Queensland

Kangaroo Point which includes night scenes, a bay or harbour and a city
Brisbane
Known for Dining, Shopping and River View
From trendy galleries to trendier bars, diving to biking, Brisbane is ready and willing to be whatever kind of destination you want it to be.

Reasons to visit

  • Redcliffe Jetty Markets
  • Bee Gees Way
  • Dunwich Ferry Terminal
Gold Coast featuring a city, general coastal views and a coastal town
Gold Coast
Known for Dining, Shopping and Theme Park
For a break in the sun, head to this expansive city: the perfect combination of beaches, theme parks, nightlife, rain forests and mountains.

Reasons to visit

  • Sea World
  • Dreamworld
  • Warner Bros. Movie World
Mooloolaba showing a coastal town and waves
Sunshine Coast
Known for Dining, Shopping and Surfing
Enjoy pristine beaches, lush rainforest and exciting cities in this area north of Brisbane, famous for its surf breaks, fresh seafood and laid-back locals.

Reasons to visit

  • Bulcock Beach
  • SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast
  • Hastings Street
Castle Hill featuring landscape views, a city and a sunset
Townsville
Known for Island, River View and Swimming
Enjoy the year-round balmy weather, relax at the beach, or explore the forests, wetlands, and marine habitats that surround north Queensland’s unofficial capital.

Reasons to visit

  • Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal
  • Horseshoe Bay Beach
  • Magnetic Island National Park
Skyrail Rainforest Cableway featuring landscape views and rainforest
Cairns
Known for Friendly People, Tour and Coral Reef

Reasons to visit

  • Cairns Esplanade
  • Cairns Marlin Marina
  • Esplanade Lagoon
Whitsundays
Whitsundays

Reasons to visit

  • Whitehaven Beach
  • Catseye Beach
  • Hamilton Island Marina