Don’t bother with the GPS or Google Maps – just head north and when you see boutique cafés drizzled along the Queensland Riviera, a sky-high cityscape jutting into the horizon as the sun sets and some of the best diving spots in the world, you’ll know you’ve reached Townsville. As a modern cosmopolitan town with a unique country vibe, Townsville invites you take a spell in the ‘outback by the sea’.
Scramble to the summit to take in the panoramic views at the top of Castle Hill, or take a more leisurely stroll along the lush beachfront esplanade on the Strand.For more info than you can poke a stick at – from shipwrecks to the rainforest – check out the sprawling Museum of Tropical Queensland. And once you’re done sightseeing, kick back marina-side at one of Townsville’s trendy local nightspots.
TOWNSVILLE’S TOP 10
10. Cotters Markets Head out on Sunday mornings and pick up some fresh produce, as well as a bunch of assorted antiquities.
5. Queens Gardens Botanical Park Wander through the rainforest or go walkabout down the black bean walk.
9. Diving to Yongala Wreck Once a luxury passenger liner, the Yongala sank in the Townsville depths and is now home to a whole mass of sea critters.
4. Maritime Museum of Townsville Land ahoy! Explore through some excellent local lighthouse memorabilia. The museum is also home to a model of the Yongala.
8. Bushland Beach Kick back on shore with a picnic, or take a walk out to another fantastic old wooden shipwreck at low tide.
3. Cultural Centre Bone up on your indigenous knowledge, and maybe even pick up an Aboriginal-art-covered cricket bat!
7. Lake Ross Avid birdwatchers, you’re in luck. There are over 220 species of our avian friends in this area.
2. Reef HQ Take a peek under the sea at turtles, sharks and rays.
6. Perc Tucker Regional Gallery For Townsville in a nutshell (or a canvas), explore some fantastic local artworks.
1. Billabong Sanctuary Take a gander at some native wildlife.
If you’re feeling particularly genteel, follow your ears to the Australian Festival of Chamber Music in late-July.
Pick up a bargain or just fill your face at the Cultural Fest each August.
Put it in fifth and speed your way over to the Metal Mania Car and Bike Show in September.
For one of the best music festivals in Far North Queensland, rage on over to the Full Noise Music Festival in October.
Bring along your frankincense to the annual Christmas festival by the sea at the Stable on the Strand each December.
WHEN TO GO
· Townsville boasts a pretty tropical climate, which means hot, wet summers and cool dry winters.
· Townsville is at its hottest in February, but the rain usually cools things off by the end of the day.
· Although the middle of winter, July still sees temperatures of around 25ºC (77ºF), making it a great time of year to be hitting the beach.
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· Townsville has a pretty decent bus service that will get you around town.
· There are plenty of taxis around the place, but unless you’re on a short trip, you will feel the pinch.
· Townsville is in the process of developing some top-notch bike tracks. Heading around town on two wheels is a great way to catch some nature.
Townsville - General information
A city on the rise in beautiful Queensland, Australia, Townsville has more than just the central section of the Great Barrier Reef to offer tourists. The unofficial capital of North Queensland, with close to 150,000 people, has become a lively destination in recent years. From the action on the tropical beach known as The Strand, to the host of attractions on the Riverway, Townsville has a lot going for it. Points of interest like Reef HQ, home of the city aquarium, as well as the Museum of Tropical Queensland, offer brilliant exhibits that educate visitors on the rich natural beauty of the area.
For those who want to get out and explore, Magnetic Island, just offshore from Townsville, is a popular destination. The island is part resort and as a fraction of Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, part nature reserve. As such, Magnetic Island is indeed a magnet for lovers of exotic fauna and flora as well as holiday tourists.
Attractions & Activities
- Magnetic Island
- Castle Hill
- Anderson Park
- Queens Gardens
- Australian Festival of Chamber Music
- Barrier Reef Orchestra
- North Queensland Cowboys Rugby
- Greek Festival
- Townsville Jazz Festival
Restaurant & Nightlife
- Yongala Lounge
- Table 51
- C Bar
- Rhino Bar
- The Bank
- Santa Fe Gold
Townsville has a tropical savanna climate, with very hot weather throughout the year. The rain season between December and March sees temperatures in the range of 23°C to 32°C. Otherwise, temperatures waver between 14°C and 30°C.
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