Basking in more than 300 days of sunshine each year and surrounded by some of Australia’s most pristine natural wonders, Townsville is a tropical oasis begging to be explored.
Islands, beaches, reefs, waterfalls, and eco-glamping escapades are just a taste of what’s on offer, so there’s no denying this is paradise for nature lovers. Whether you’re looking for a getaway with friends, a romantic weekend, or a family holiday; there’s enough sun, sea, and rainforest for everyone to enjoy.
We’ve rounded up the top 6 activities in our Townsville guide that’s sure to deliver the unexpected eco-adventure you’ve been waiting for.
Cozy-up under the stars with a unique glamping experience
A stay in one of these eco-glamping tents will make your visit to Townsville all the more memorable. With views overlooking a newly established wetland, Bush Oasis is the perfect base to explore all of Townsville’s natural wonders.
The ten safari-style tents offer guests a laid back glamping experience, with each tent featuring an ensuite bathroom, pillow-topped bed and furnished private decks overlooking the wetlands.
The camp is tucked away in a peaceful bush setting but also conveniently located less than a 20-minute drive Townsville’s white sand beaches, Magnetic Island and the city’s nightlife. The camp also provides easy access to Alligator Creek and Bowling Green Bay National Park, which is the perfect spot to hike to waterfall
Plunge into rainforest pools in Paluma Range National Park
If you’re looking to uncover spectacular lookouts, rock jumps and freshwater swimming holes, be sure to make the trip to Paluma Range National Park (just 40 minutes north of Townsville). The Paluma region offers a number of amazing walking tracks through the spectacular Wet Tropics Rainforest with breathtaking views.
Along the Paluma Range highway you’ll come across Little Crystal Creek and Big Crystal Creek, both ideal locations to stop for a picnic lunch, swim, or a bushwalk. Little Crystal Creek is well known for its historic stone arch bridge built during the 1930’s. The cascading waterfalls feed into one of the best freshwater swim spots in the north.
If you’re still keen to chase waterfalls, make sure to plan a visit to Wallaman Falls, the Southern Hemisphere’s largest sheer drop waterfall. Standing 268 metres tall, you can venture to the base of the falls and admire the view from the Wallaman Falls Lookout.
Sail your way to hidden bays and beaches
Have you ever daydreamed you could let the breeze carry you away to a tropical island? Well, you can stop dreaming.
Big Mama Sailing offers sailing charters exploring Magnetic Island, Townsville and The Great Barrier Reef. With 23 beautiful beaches and bays to choose from, you can enjoy sailing in paradise without the crowds.
There’s plenty of deck space to relax, so you can enjoy sun-drenched bliss as you explore the wonders of Townsville’s hidden bays and beaches only accessible by boat. There are paddle boards and snorkelling equipment available, or comfy bean bags for those looking to sit back and watch stunning scenery drift by.
Take a journey into a surreal underwater world
This incredible museum is one tourist attraction definitely worth holding your breath for. You’ll just need a scuba tank or snorkel to get there.
As the first of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere, the MOUA offers a contemporary platform to share stories of the reef, and the culture of its First Nations people. The hope is each visit will also spark a meaningful conversation about reef conservation.
The ‘Coral Greenhouse’ is one artwork you have to see to truly believe. This underwater installation is a surreal blend of art, nature and science that aims to highlight reef conservation, restoration and education on a global scale.
Proceeds from each admission will also fund ocean research and conservation, including coral spawning, the biology of mangroves, herbivorous fish and marine protected areas.
Explore the secrets of Magnetic Island by kayak
Prefer a paddle-powered adventure instead? Hit the water with Magnetic Island Sea Kayaks and discover the island’s best kept secrets as you get up close to nature at its most pristine.
The guided tour takes you out around the northern tip to discover the rugged beauty of the coastline in Magnetic Island’s World Heritage National & Marine Park. From the quiet of your sea kayak, you’ll paddle around to one of its northern bays, usually the secluded Balding Bay, which has no road access, or the picturesque Radical Bay. There’s also time for tropical breakfast on the beach, some relaxation and a local ecology lesson.
Along your journey you’ll float within metres of huge granite boulders, as you look out for a sea turtle, dolphin, or whale (during whale season – July to September).
Venture into a modern day Jurassic Park
Rugged mountains rise abruptly from the wetlands, saltpans and mangrove forests of Bowling Green Bay National Park. Plunge into the cool, deep pools or splash under waterfalls after hiking one of the nearby trails.
Enjoy a stroll through open woodland, climbing steadily to Cockatoo Creek. Lined with bottlebrush trees and filled with clear rockpools, this creek is ideal for a rest and a swim.
The national park’s wetland has gained international recognition for its importance as one of Australia’s richest coastal habitats. In the summer months at least 30 different species of birds migrate to the park from various parts of the world.
This area truly comes loaded with adventure — as you’ll be venturing into croc-country. Remember to pay attention to warning signs to keep yourself out of harm’s way.
This article is sponsored by Bush Oasis Glamping and proudly endorsed by This Weekend. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make our content possible.
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