Queensland is the northeastern-most state in Australia. With 688,000 miles of territory and a population of 4.5 million, Queensland is the second largest and third most populated state in Australia. Queensland was named for Queen Victoria, who signed a law separating it from New South Wales in 1859. That wasn’t the beginning of settlements in Queensland, however. The area has been home to tribes of indigenous people for some 40,000 years.
Today the people of Queensland enjoy a very healthy economy, thanks to a variety of profitable industries. Farming is big business in Queensland. Some of the items that are grown there locally are sugar cane, pineapples, peanuts and bananas. Animals are a part of that industry, too – with products like wool and beef being harvested as well. Another major industry in Queensland is tourism. Millions of people descend upon the state each year, generating over $4 billion dollars in revenue annually. Because of its sheer size, Queensland has a lot to offer tourists in the form of varying climates and landscapes, but it also has many interesting places to visit and sights to see. We’re going to highlight some of the best places to visit when in Queensland and see why millions of guests visit each and every year.
The Great Barrier Reef
Source – banco_imagenes_geologicas
The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system in the world – and it’s located just off Queensland’s coast. Snorkelers and divers from all over the world travel to Queensland just to tour these precious reefs in its midst. In all there are nearly 3,000 reefs and 900 islands to explore. The Great Barrier Reef has been named one of the seven wonders of the world and it has also been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tourism to the reefs alone generates more than $1 billion dollars to the local economy each year.
Source – tauntingpanda
The Daintree Rainforest is the largest continuous rainforest in Australia. The 2,600 square kilometer forest contains 30% of Australia’s reptile species and 65% of its bat and butterfly species. The rainforest is home to some 12,000 species of insects and many different species of rare flora.
Gold Coast City
Source – dexxus
Gold Coast City is a tourist mecca that draws millions each year. The city is world-renowned for its 35 miles of beaches, which offer some of the best surfing waters in the world. The city boasts 500 restaurants, 40 golf courses and 6 theme parks. It’s also a major film producing city, with 75% of all movie productions in Queensland having taken place in the city since the 1990s. The Q1 building is located in Gold Coast City and is the highest residential tower in the world. On the 77th floor, there is a public observation deck, which is happens to be the highest in all of the Southern Hemisphere.
Source – jeremy_vandel
The Whitsunday Islands are a tiny chain of 74 islands off the coast of Queensland. Only eight of them are inhabited and most of the rest are national parks. You’re free to choose your own adventure, but one of the most popular activities in the islands is chartering a boat and crew for an overnight excursion to explore them all.
Source – mikex
Hervey Bay is world-renowned for its whales. Whale watching is a favorite activity for locals and tourists alike so if that’s something you’d like to experience – Hervey Bay is definitely the place to go.
St. Helena Ghost Tour – The St. Helena Ghost Tour in Brisbane is a haunted nighttime boat tour put on by costumed characters and guides. The cruise lasts forty minutes during which you will be spooked by tales, voices and visions from the past. At the end, you’ll be served tea and desserts! Suitable for all ages of tourists, but small children may get frightened.
Source – pulse3
Queensland is home to six theme parks and all of them are located in the Gold Coast City. Whatever your preference for adventure, you’re sure to find it there. There are two waterparks, a safari adventure park and other traditional Disney/Warner Brother type of parks.
Source – certified_su
At Barron Falls, you can also choose your adventure. You can climb to the top of the observatory and watch the gushing waterfalls from a high vantage point with spectacular views or you can get right in the middle of the white water rapids they produce by going on a rafting excursion down the Barron River.
Johnstone River Crocodile Farm
Source – crafterm
Australia is famous for its crocodiles and at the Johnstone River Crocodile Farm, you can get up close and personal with over three thousands of them ranging in size from 30cm to over 5 meters in length.
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
Source – 25667114@N06
The Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary combines all the wonderful nature attractions Australia has to offer and presents them to you in one package. More then 1,400 animal and birds are at home on the sanctuary along with the largest collection of Australian flora in the world. There are many live shows and presentations – including one about some of the most poisonous snakes in the world, which is a favorite of visitor to the sanctuary. There is also an animal rehabilitation program on site that rehabilitates sick and injured wildlife.
Riversleigh 11 – The Riversleigh area of Queensland is one of the ten best fossil depositories in the world. Many rare species of fossils have been found in and around this area – even some 35 varieties of bats and complete dinosaur skeletons. Most of the remains were found encased in limestone. The fossils date between 15 and 65 million years and have provided valuable scientific evidence of the evolution of some native Australian species such as the koala.
Source – lastgunslinger
The Skyrail is 7.5 kilometer cableway that carries passengers via suspended gondolas through the rainforest of Queensland. The view is unsurpassed by any other in all of Australia and is the number one tourist attraction in the state. There are 114 gondolas capable of carrying 6 passengers each. The rides takes about two hours, with two stops at outposts in the rainforest where guests can disembark if they’d like and explore the rainforest via trails and walkways. The gondolas move very slowly, giving the visitors ample time to enjoy their surroundings. The Skyrail is accessible to passengers of all ages and abilities.
The Ginger Factory – The Ginger Factory in Queensland is the largest of its kind. Ginger is processed into many different kinds of products and a tour of this factory will show you how. It’s a great place for kids because there are over 200 puppets that put on performances and also a fun train ride. There are cooking displays that show you how to incorporate ginger into your meals, a gift shop, ice cream parlor, restaurant and lots of other fun and educational activities and areas of interest.
- Saltwater crocodiles are abundant in the waters of Queensland and the threat they post to humans should not be overlooked. Be extra cautious around inland waterways and some of the coast areas away from The Great Barrier Reefs as well. Crocodile attacks are not that common, but have been known to happen and can be frequent during certain times of the year.
- Sunstroke is a major health concern in Australia. Be sure to keep you and your travel party well hydrated by drinking lots of waters while venturing outdoors during the day time hours. The UV index of the sun’s harmful rays will usually be on the ‘extreme’ end each day in Queensland. The hottest time of the day is between 10a and 2pm so avoid being outdoors during those hours, if possible.
- Aside from only swimming in patrolled waters with lifeguards and clearly marked safe swim areas, pay close attentions to signs on the beach in regards to ‘stingers’. These animals thrive in Australian waters and their stings can be deadly.