Occupying Australia’s northeastern corner, this vast state is awash with dazzling landscapes, vibrant cities and 300 days of sunshine a year. It’s also home to some of the country’s most notable highlights, from the golden beaches of the Sunshine Coast and the luminous green of the Daintree rainforest and Daintree Village to the clear blue waters of the Great Barrier Reef.
It hides some of the country’s lesser-known treasures, delivering wow-factor with gusto. You only have to peel back the postcard to find corners seemingly untouched by other visitors – Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park with its ancient rainforests, the white sandy beaches of the Whitsunday Islands, vibrant and unique Aboriginal festivals and jaw-dropping sunsets. Brisbane will delight city slickers with its lively, cosmopolitan atmosphere and, in the north, Cairns is a travellers’ mecca. Between the two are strings of towns and islands, each with its own flavour but all brimming with Queenslander hospitality.
For the active traveller there are oodles of opportunities for white-water rafting, scuba diving, snorkelling, bushwalking, horse riding, surfing, bungee jumping, abseiling… The state is also home to more tours accredited under the national eco certification scheme than any other, so you can safely explore, rather than exploit, this beautiful state.
Best places to stay in Queensland
Queensland & the Great Barrier Reef travel guide - 7th edition
Let it all hang out in Queensland: Australia’s holiday haven offers beaches, reefs, jungles, cheery locals and a laid-back tropical pace of life.
Ultimate Australian weekend escapes
Australians spend more than AU$51 billion on domestic travel every year and the latest stats from Tourism Australia suggest Aussies are trading long languid holidays for shorter stays focussed on making the most of a destination...
Queensland & the Great Barrier Reef travel guide - 6th edition
Queensland spreads a dazzling array of natural and cultural wonders. Home to ancient rainforests, tropical islands, rugged mountains and the stunning Great Barrier Reef, this state harbours some of Australia’s best sites for outdoor adventure....
Travelling with kids on Queensland's Capricorn Coast
I’ve twice felt the irresistible pull of Queensland’s Capricorn Coast. On my first trip I played the backpacker fool 10 years too old for sweet-smelling dorm rooms but hanging on to my youth all the same. Windswept slopes at Keppel Bay Islands National Park in Queensland's Capricorn Coast. Image by Auscape/UIG/Getty Images...
Queensland & the Great Barrier Reef - Plan your trip (Chapter)
Your journey to Queensland & the Great Barrier Reef starts here. You’ll find the tools to plan your adventure: where to go and when, how much to budget, plus in-depth info on outdoor activities including bushwalking, diving and surfing.
Great Barrier Reef Diving and Snorkeling Cruise from Cairns
Enjoy five hours of snorkeling or diving at two outer Great Barrier Reef locations on a premium cruise from Cairns. You'll be served a typically Aussie barbecue lunch aboard the fully equipped Osprey V and go on a guided snorkeling tour or learn to scuba dive. Aboard the Osprey V, you'll enjoy one of the fastest day trips to the Great Barrier Reef, cruising at over 30 knots.
Green Island Day Trip from Cairns
Cruise to Green Island from Cairns and find a tropical paradise on the Great Barrier Reef. You'll spend either four or five hours at Green Island, with plenty of time to snorkel or scuba dive, tour the reef on a glass-bottom boat or view coral from a semi-submersible submarine.
After the party: recharging in Queensland's Gold Coast Hinterland
Sunburnt and exhausted after partying it up on Australia's Gold Coast? That’s not surprising. This sprawling city stretching along the Pacific coast south of Brisbane is Australia’s answer to both Las Vegas and Miami, combining gambling, nightclubs and dining with perfect swimming beaches...
Australia - Queensland & The Great Barrier Reef (Chapter)
From the surf-soaked Gold Coast beaches to the tropical Daintree rainforest, Queensland offers an array of distractions, including the submarine kingdom of the Great Barrier Reef, and islands - photogenic coral-fringed beauties or rugged sand...