Whether it’s a full day sailing the Great Barrier Reef on a luxury yacht or a few seconds savoring that first sip of sparkling on a Havannah Island picnic; your time is better spent in Queensland.
With 2023 approaching, now’s the time to clock off and escape before the year does – and Queensland’s unique landscapes are packed with out-of-this-world moments ready to be captured right now.
Don’t wait until the new year to seize new experiences; swap phone screens for tropical scenes on a Daintree River cruise, switch the out-of-office on and your mind off with a Magnetic Island heli-flight, or relieve the year's pressures with an indulgent treatment at one of the Gold Coast’s top day spas.
1. Port Douglas: Seize your day sailing the world's largest reef
Seize the famous Great Barrier Reef on a full-day snorkelling and sailing adventure aboard a luxury catamaran. Join a marine biologist on a guided snorkel tour and spot an array of sealife swirling through the flawless blue waters of Mackay Coral Cay. From snorkelling equipment and coach transfers to a fabulous tropical buffet lunch and glass-bottom boat viewing, every aspect of your day is taken care of with this intimate adventure experience.
2. Cairns: Seize your day exploring World Heritage wonders
Seize Tropical North Queensland's natural wonders on this full-day experience that highlights two UNESCO World heritage-listed sites: the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. Beginning in Cairns, take to the skies on a scenic helicopter flight and admire breathtaking views from rainforest to reef. Continue your discoveries on a spectacular Daintree River cruise, before getting up close to ancient flora and fauna on a boardwalk stroll. Continue by 4WD to Cape Tribulation, where you'll have the chance to sink your toes into one of Australia's most iconic beachfronts.
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3. Townsville: Seize your day on a tropical island adventure
Seize an unforgettable heli-flight and luxurious small-group sailing experience on this full-day Magnetic Island experience. Taking off from Townsville, soar above pristine beaches and turquoise waters before landing on Magnetic Island to embark on your sailing adventure. Cruise to one of the island's many secluded bays, where you'll have a chance to swim in the tranquil waters and toast to a magical day out with a glass of wine and indulgent seafood lunch.
Seize breathtaking aerial views and sparkling seaside vistas with a private charter helicopter and island picnic experience. Departing from Townsville, you’ll soar above the azure waters of the Coral Sea before an exhilarating touchdown at Havannah Island, a small spot of paradise located on the southernmost point of the Palm Island Group archipelago. A truly magical location, you’ll have two hours to relax in the shallows, stroll along the beach and snorkel the pristine waters and fringing reef. To top it off — a gourmet picnic hamper and glass of sparkling wine or beer will be served under your private beach umbrella.
Spending a few days in Townsville? Find out how to seize 48 hours in Queensland’s hidden gem.
4. Gold Coast: Seize your day with a sunrise balloon ride
Seize the sunrise from a new viewpoint with a magical hot air balloon experience over the Gold Coast. Float through the skies in the comfort of a generous hot air balloon basket and take in the beauty of the Gold Coast from a bird's eye view. Upgrade to a five-star Sheraton buffet breakfast and take luxury to new heights, or book in for a fully VIP ballooning experience complete with sparkling Prosecco and chocolates.
Looking for something more down-to-earth? Seize the Gold Coast with a luxury gondola experience.
5. Airlie Beach: Seize your day sailing or soaring over the Whitsunday Islands
Seize a full day sailing the Whitsunday Islands onboard the beautiful Lady Enid. Glide from the Port of Airlie Marina and enjoy your morning cup of tea or coffee in the company of pristine white sands and turquoise waters. Land at Tongue Bay and stroll to Hill Inlet for panoramic views before sinking your toes into some of the world's softest sands at Whitehaven. Enjoy a locally-produced gourmet lunch followed by a gentle sail back to Airlie Beach complete with a glass of sparkling and antipasto nibbles.
Seize a mesmerising view of paradise on a 60-minute seaplane adventure. Take off from Airlie Beach and count the 74 Whitsunday Islands as you soar over Whitehaven Beach and Hill Inlet. Then, fly out to the Great Barrier Reef and witness the iconic Heart Reef, one of the world's most photographed locations.
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6. Moreton Bay: Seize your day spotting dolphins in style
Seize a blissful sail around the gorgeous Moreton Bay region aboard a 43-foot luxury catamaran. Explore beautiful beaches from complimentary stand-up paddleboards and keep your eyes peeled for sightings of turtles, dolphins and dugongs in their natural habitat. Refuel with a generous afternoon tea of featuring antipasto boards and seasonal fruit platters.
Looking for more things to do near Brisbane? Check out our favourite ways to experience Australia’s ultimate outdoor city with our insider articles and expert guides.
7. Sunshine Coast: Seize your day as a culinary connoisseur
Seize a feast with a Maroochydore-based cooking class specifically designed for the discerning coffee, spirit and culinary connoisseur. Start your morning at the Coffee Training Co. with a guided tour of the world-class roastery before learning how to pour your own wondrous coffee. Move on to non-profit, food waste warriors Ozharvest for a three-hour cooking class emphasising zero-waste and delicious cookery. After feasting on your three-course, no-mess meal, head to Sunshine and Sons distillery to sip your way across several sensational vodkas and gins.
‘Tis the season to savour Queensland’s fresh produce. Treat your tastebuds to an indulgent adventure with our Gourmet Guide to Queensland.
8. Hamilton Island: Seize your day on a private sunset cruise
Seize the sheer beauty of Hamilton Island in absolute privacy on a 1.5-hour sunset cruise. Bring along your friends and family to unwind on the water and take in scenery enhanced by the late afternoon's golden hues. The best part? This luxury experience is BYO; pop a bottle of champagne or pack some beers and make the cruise your own.
Can't decide which region to seize? Experience Townsville’s esplanade, Brisbane’s foodie scene and everything in between on one of Australia’s most legendary road trips.
Keen to seize an adrenaline rush? Ride the waves on a Palm Beach surfing lesson, raise the family pulse on a half-day Barron River rafting adventure or capture breathtaking views from 15,000 feet with a thrilling skydive experience at locations across Queensland.