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Welcome to Townsville

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Townsville Attractions

Museum of Tropical Queensland

Townsville Museum Tropical Queensland

A stunning addition to Townsville’s skyline from 2002 is this almost US$18 million museum, with its curved roof like a ship in full sail. In pride of place is the striking exhibition of relics salvaged from the wreck of HMS Pandora, which lies some 33 meters underwater on the edge of the Great Barrier Reef, one hundred and twenty kilometers east of Cape York. The Pandora exhibition also includes a full-scale duplicate of a section of the ship's bow and its seventeen meters high foremast. Pandora sank in 1791, and the wreck was discovered almost 2 centuries alter in 1977. The exhibition traces the ship’s voyage and the retrieval of the sunken treasure. The museum has 6 galleries, including a hands-on science centre, and a natural history exhibit, which looks at the life in tropical Queensland - above and under the water. Another is devoted to north Queensland’s native heritage, with items from Torres Strait and the South Sea Islands as well as stories from people of various cultures about the settlement and labour of north Queensland. One should spare at least 2 to 3 hours to the touring exhibitions, which change every three months.

Reef HQ Aquarium

Reef HQ Aquarium

Reef HQ is the education centre for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's headquarters and it is also the biggest living coral reef aquarium worldwide. It has been upgraded in 2002 (A$6.4-million / US$5.1-million), but the highlight is still walking through a twenty meters long transparent acrylic tunnel, being able to gaze right into a giant predator’s tank where sharks cruise around. The wreck of SS Yongala serves as a backcloth for black-tip and white-tip reef sharks, leopard sharks and nurse sharks, sharing their 750000 l. (195000 gal.) home with stingrays, giant trevally, and a green turtles. Watching them feed is just spectacular. The tunnel also reveals the 2.5 million l. (650000 gal.) coral reef exhibition, with various hard and soft corals - a home for thousands of colourful fish, giant clams, sea cucumbers, sea stars, and other kinds of interesting sea creatures. During the scuba dive show, the divers speak to over an intercom while they swim with the sharks and feed the fishes. Other highlights include a marine creature touch-tank, a wild sea-turtle rehabilitation centre, and various interactive activities for children. Reef HQ is an easy reachable from the city centre.

Trip To Magnetic Island (Maggie)

Magnetic Island

The Magnetic Island is an enchanting 51 square kilometers (20 sq. miles) national park island, just twenty minutes (8 km/5 miles) from Townsville by ferry. About 2500 people live here, and it is very popular with Aussies, who love its holiday atmosphere, including a good range of restaurants, laid-back cafes, and many takeout joints. The peace-looking visitors will find plenty of un-spoiled nature to restore their souls. Most people come for the about twenty pristine (which are amazingly un-crowded) bays and white beaches, but hikers, botanists, and bird-watchers may want to explore the eucalyptus woods, patches of rainforest, and granite hills. The island got its name when Captain Cook thought the "magnetic" rocks were involved with his compass readings. Rock wallabies are often spotted in the early morning, as well as wild koalas in the gum trees.

Magnetic Island Maggie queensland
There is no end to the things one can do on the Magnetic island – swimming and snorkeling in one of the many bays, catamaran sailing, water-skiing, scuba diving, sea kayaking, sailing or cruising around the island, para-flying, horse riding on the beach, biking, tennis or golf, taking a Harley-Davidson tour, fishing, and many more attractions are awaiting you. Equipment for all activities is available for rent on the island.

Magnetic Island Map Maggie

Billabong Sanctuary

Billabong Sanctuary

At the Billabong Sanctuary on the Bruce Highway, seventeen kilometers (11 miles) south of the city, one can see Aussie wildlife in a natural setting; hold a baby koala, a crocodile, a python, or a wombat, and feed the kangaroos, or just take your own camera and shoot the amazing nature around. Tours and shows run continuously from 8:30 am. One of the most popular among these is the saltwater-crocodile feeding at 12:15 and 2:30 pm. There are also barbecues, a food kiosk, and a pool available for the visitors.. The sanctuary is open every day from 8 am to 5 pm.

Billabong Sanctuary Townsville

If coming around, also one shouldn’t miss the striking views of Cleveland Bay and Maggie from Castle Hill – it is a 2, 5 kilometers (1.5 mile) drive or a shorter, steep walk up from Townsville.

Townsville/Castle Hill Townsville

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