If you are willing to avoid the touristy cities of Australia like Cairns, Adelaide and the like, then nothing would be as suitable as the city of Townsville that is popular as the sunniest tourist spot in northern Queensland and attract travelers who are looking for a laidback environ in a less secluded place. As such, Townsville is a perfect spot to have some peace of mind while you have a great vacation with your friends, family or even solo.
Things to do in Townsville
The attractions in Townville are much diverse to cater to the tastes of all types of tourists from different parts of the world. Whether you are a nature lover or soak in the sun at the beautiful beaches, Townsville has the right dose ready for you. So before you chart out your itinerary, here is a quick sneak peek into the best of the attractions that Townsville has on offer.
- Castle Hill
Situated at the very center of the CBD Townsville stands the majestic Castle Hill that has been one of the major attractions of the city for ever. Numerous lookout points have been built along the trail to the top of the hill and these are well-known tourist spots for the incredible views of the city and the Cleveland Bay that they offer. These lookouts can be easily accessed via the walking or the hiking trails that are built along the mountain and are the best locales if you are looking to have a great view of the city below and some nice photographs to go with it. When atop, you will be able to witness the rich floral and plant variety along with some native animal life that thrives here.
Reaching the top of the mountain is an easy task and you can either walk or drive to the top from where a simple ascent up the stairs will take you to the main lookout of the mountains. The walk up the hill from the city’s center is 2.8 Km and if you want to avoid the effort, you can drive yourself or take a cab that will cost you about $20-$25.
- The Strand
If enjoying an ultimate beachfront is your plan this vacation, then the Strand should inevitably be your first pick. Stretching over 2.2 Km, this fantastic promenade is a piece of heaven on Earth. You get to enjoy the fantastic beaches, clear views of the water, picturesque spots all along the water front, calm picnic spots and ideal swimming waters that make up a great way to enjoy your holidays.
The Strand lies at a very close distance from the CBD of Townsville and both walking and driving are viable. Walking takes about 20 minutes while a cab ride will last for less than 5 minutes and cost about $10.
- Billabong Sanctuary
Covering about 25 acres, the Billabong Sanctuary is home to some of the fantastic species of Australian fauna, categorized into eucalypt woodland, rain forest and wetlands habitats. From gentle koalas to cute wombats to majestic pythons – you can view them all in their natural habitats, either enclosed or roaming freely. Adults as well children can take pleasure in feeding the animals, holding them and even clicking memorable pictures with them. Billabong may not be as expansive as some of the biggies in other Australian cities, nonetheless, it offers a great time to all the visitors and patrons.
At a driving distance of about 20 minutes from the CBD, the Billabong Sanctuary is a great spot to be on your itinerary on Townsville.
- Reef HQ and Museum of Tropical Queensland
If you have always marveled at the diverse marine life of the Great Barrier Reef but have always shied away from visiting it, either due to the expensive tour or the fact that you have to go below water, here is your best chance to enjoy the wonders of the reef for real. The Reef HQ, the largest display of alive coral reef, offers you the facility to enjoy the Great Barrier Reef without spending a fortune and of course, without getting wet. The Reef HQ was the brainchild of Dr Graeme Kelleher and is, presently, one of the prime attractions of the region.
Located practically next door, the Museum of Tropical Queensland is another wonder spot in Townsville. The museum houses a number of exhibits including a gallery of tropical Queensland, a dedicated rainforest, a helmet display section, galleries and much more that will surely make the experience an enchanting and interesting one.
You can walk to the Reef HQ from the CBD of Townsville. If the effort seems too strenuous, you may also opt for a cab ride that will cost around $8-$10.
Located in Condon, the Riverway is riverfront parkland that offers a number of options to enjoy leisurely and pleasurable activities with friends and family. Crystal clear lagoons for relaxing swim, peaceful broadways and pathways for strolls, BBQ options along with the adjacent galleries, exhibits, cafes and restaurants make the Riverway an ideal spot to enjoy a day of your vacation or your day off.
The easiest way to access this cool tourist spot is to drive your own car of take a cab ride that takes approximately 20 minutes and costs about $45-$50.
- Queens Garden
Set against the scenic pink backdrops of the Castle Hill, the Queens Garden serves as a peaceful oasis amidst the busy CBD of Townsville. Originally home to economic and food plants, the Queens Garden occupies an important position amongst the must visit places in Townsville. With numerous usual as well as exotic plant species like banyan, candle-nut, palms, bromeliads, heliconias, aroids and so on, the Garden offers a laidback environment to enjoy a lazy evening, relaxing your limbs and your soul.
The Queens Garden is within the CBD of the city and you can walk to the Gardens, if you are in the area.
- Perc Tucker Regional Gallery
The heritage listed Perc Tucker Regional Gallery is one of the best offerings of Townsville to art and history lovers. Exhibiting more than 2000 works of art and numerous exhibits and displays during the year, the Perc Tucker gallery attracts tourists all throughout the year. In operation since 1981, the gallery is home to art works from the Tropics as well Queensland. You can also attend lectures, talks, workshops, tours and much more that are convened at the premises.
Located at Flinders Street, the Gallery is within the CBD and walking is the best option for anyone staying or located in the CBD.
If you are a plant lover and more so of palms, then the Palmetum in Townsville will be a dream come true for you. Covering about 17 hectares of area, the Palmetum is totally dedicated to the family Palms (Arecaceae) and represents all 6 subfamilies in about 300 different species. While some are original to Australia while others have been collected worldwide and nurtured in the botanic garden that opened in 1988.
Located in Annandale, this park is best accessed via a car drive or cab ride of about 20 minutes from the CBD.
- Ross River Dam
Offering splendid views of the Ross River and numerous local wildlife, the Ross river Dam is a place to relax during the early morning or evening hours. Strolling through the dam area, you could soak in the tranquility of the place while you see nature exhibiting a fantastic panorama during the sunrise and the sunset. The expanse of the Ross river and the surrounds make up an ideal spot to relax or take some great photos.
A ride to the dam is about 40 minutes long and sums to approximately $80.
- Entertainment and Convention Center
If you are a fan of basketball or concerts, check out the Entertainment and Convention Center in Townsville that hosts numerous leagues, performances, shows and concerts throughout the area. Check out with their official site for tickets, schedules and more.
The center is located just a minute away from the CBD and you can either walk or drive, depending on your location.