From Coolangatta in the south to far-flung Cape York in the north, Queensland is huge – twice as big as Texas and full of hearty and adventurous personalities to match.
Queensland’s main attraction, though, is the incomparable Great Barrier Reef, which stretches for 2300km of unbelievable undersea ecology. It’s a beacon for adventurers from all over the world and anchors any trip to Queensland, whether you’re a seasoned scuba diver, first-time surfer, resort lover or rainforest wildlife enthusiast.
Mimicking the curves of Queensland’s east coast, coming as close as 15km to shore, the World Heritage–listed Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system in the world and host to more than 900 tropical islands. Divers delight in its unbelievable sights – rich navy blue butterfly fish, luminescent pastel turkfish, teeny neon damsels, six-banded angelfish are all on display, not to mention whales, dolphins, dugongs, six species of sea turtles, sharks, giant clams and more.
To see what’s under the sea, book yourself a boat trip. The reef mecca of Cairns is the main hub for explorations, with dozens of options from quick-fire day trips to inner-reef atolls to longer trips to pristine outer-reef sites and overnight sailing voyages to isolated dive locations. Strap on a snorkel and some fins and splash into the deep blue sea to explore some of the greatest biodiversity of anywhere on earth: swimming into this hyper-coloured spectacle of coral and tropical fish, it’s easy to see why the reef is one of the world’s seven natural wonders.[/tg_program]