Some of Queensland’s top attractions lie along the Pacific Coast route. With your Brisbane Airport car rental, you can follow this drive from Brisbane to Cairns in a week. Get in snorkelling, swimming, diving; see wildlife; walk through rainforests; and indulge in plenty of fresh seafood along the way.
Head to Noosa where you can stop to check out the bistros and boutiques, and stroll the beach front. Once back on the road you’ll pass through the gold rush town of Gympie and Maryborough, Queensland’s oldest provincial city. At Hervey Bay, there’s the opportunity to do some whale watching, or catch a boat over toFraser Island. This World Heritage site is the world’s largest sand island. Attractions includeLake McKenzie and the colourful cliffs of the Cathedrals.
Get back to the mainland and make your way to Bundaberg, known for its ginger beer. Grand old colonial buildings make up this town, which is also an entry point to the southern Great Barrier Reef. Bundaberg’s yawning coast includes Lady Musgrave Island and Lady Elliot Island which cays and reefs ideal for snorkelling and diving. At Woodgate beach keep your eyes peeled fo kangaroos.
Continue on northwards toward Rockhampton. Enroute you will reach the Town of 1770, named after the year it was discovered by Captain Cook. An inland detour will lead to therainforest of Cania Gorge National Park and the Mystery Craters in Eurimbula National Park. Once in Rockhampton, be sure to order a steak – it is Australia’s beef capital. Snorkellingcan be done at Monkey Point or Clam Bay.
Just north of Rockhampton are the Capricorn Caves, a unique set of above-ground caves in a limestone ridge. Continuing north, Mackay is perfect to base yourself for trips to theWhitsundays. These 74 islands in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef are a true tropical paradise with pristine beaches and waters just made for sailing.
Back on the road, you can take a detour to beautiful Eungella National Park. Enroute to Townsville you also pass through Proserpine and Airlie Beach, two more gateways to theWhitsundays. Once in Townsville, make the most of the nightlife in this subtropical northern town.
Known as the Great Green Way, this stretch of the route takes in 12 national parks and more than 20 islands. Make time to visit Wallaman Falls, Australia’s highest single drop waterfall or stop at Hinchinbrook Island, Australia’s biggest island national park. Once you land in Cairns, relax in this beachy town.