Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia

In the latest guest post on Amanda’s Wanderlust, Nicole Noel from HighStyleLife takes us on a tour of Queensland – the eco heart of Australia…

With increased awareness of the necessity of preserving natural treasures and cultural environments, tourists can and must experience new lands in a more responsible and respectful way.

The latest research shows that ecotourism and other forms of more meaningful traveling are gaining momentum through independent journeys and an increasing desire of new generations to step away from the mass-tourism offer. With that in mind, Australia is one of the most popular destinations to discover.

Ranked #6 on the Lonely Planet’s best traveling destinations in 2016, Australia is a land of indigenous culture, rainforests, reefs, and amazing biodiversity that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Queensland is an absolute winner with five places chosen as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. Here’s what you won’t want to miss in the eco heart of Australia…

The most extensive rainforest in the world

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest post on Amanda's Wanderlust
Creative Commons ‘The Tree of Souls’ by Tatters is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Lamington National Park has an exceptional ecological importance. It’s part of Gondwana rainforest, the largest one in the world and an important World Heritage Site. Lamington is home to many interesting and endangered species, such as the spotted-tail quoll, Richmond birdwing butterfly, eastern bristlebird, Coxen’s fig parrot, tree frogs, and platypus.

Most popular activities include visiting the tree top walking trails, where you can experience the rainforest from 180 meters high! You can also take a walking tour in the Green Mountain area, or climb Mount Bithongabel for a perfect view. The wildlife sanctuary at Currumbin national park is also worth a visit; and you can check out the other Queensland national parks, too.

The surreal Wet Tropics

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest post on Amanda's Wanderlust
Creative Commons ‘Our Cabin’ by Ed Hunsinger is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Yet another World Heritage Site, Queensland’s Wet Tropics are a must for your travel bucket list. The most popular tourist destination within it is the Daintree National Park, located in the far north. There is a wide range of accommodation options available, including lodges, holiday houses, retreats, and camping spots. You can also choose to share a place with house mates who can show you around and discover hidden places for you.

Eco tours are very popular and include guided cruises on the Daintree River and walking tours with expert guides where you can learn a lot about Daintree’s biodiversity. Don’t miss out on visiting the Daintree Discovery Center. With an interactive program and audio guide, you’ll find out many interesting facts about this rainforest. See for yourself why 400,000 tourists visit every year.

Discover amazing marine life

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest post on Amanda's Wanderlust
Creative Commons ‘Great Barrier Reef from above’ by Tchami is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s biggest coral reef system. Being home to 400 different coral species and over 6,600 marine species, it is one of the world’s most popular destinations for scuba diving. Cairns and Port Douglas are the most popular destinations that offer daily boat tours.

If you’re not a big fan of diving, there are accessible reefs and sites that are shallow enough for you to explore just by snorkeling. Swim with manta rays, turtles, various fish, eels, and even with gentle and harmless giants – such as sharks and whales. The vivid sea biosphere will make you appreciate life and all its wonderful creatures.

Please bear in mind that high-volume tourism can pose a threat to coral reefs such as the Great Barrier Reef. Please ensure you only visit the reef with an operator who has adopted voluntary standards for sustainable tourism.

Mesmerizing Whitsunday islands

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest post on Amanda's Wanderlust
Creative Commons photo by ilaria is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Bordered by the Great Barrier Reef, the Whitsunday islands are a group of 74 different islands and each of them is considered to be a true tropical paradise. There is definitely a lot to see here: from historical and heritage sites, to national parks, natural pools, and white sand beaches. Don’t miss the Whitehaven Beach which was voted the “Best Beach in the South Pacific” on TripAdvisor.

Whale watching in Hervey Bay

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest post on Amanda's Wanderlust
Creative Commons ‘Hervey Bay Whales 1000’ by Michael Dawes is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

There are many sailing tours in Hervey Bay that will give you an opportunity to observe magnificent whales. If you’ve read Herman Melville’s “Moby Dick”, you’ll know how fascinating these beings can be. When you see them jump out of the water and flip around for the first time – it will be an incredible moment you’ll never forget.

A short ferry boat ride will take you to Fraser Island, where you can enjoy dreamy beaches, safaris, and sightseeing tours. Take a 4WD guided tour and discover the tranquility of the Central Station Rainforest. Take a 4-hour drive south of Hervey Bay and reach another site in Lower Beechmont – the amazing Killarney heart-shaped pool.

Sustainable traveling should be the only way we explore the world. Discover amazing Queensland – the eco heart of Australia, the land down under!

Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia | Guest Post | Amanda's Wanderlust

Thank you to Nicole for contributing this guest post. Nicole is a lifestyle blogger who is passionate about travel and healthy living. She always seeks new adventures and enjoys sharing her experiences with others. In her free time she likes to prepare healthy and delicious food for her friends. You can also find Nicole on Twitter.


37 thoughts on “Visit Queensland: the Eco Heart of Australia”

  1. Nice! I’ve been visiting Queensland for four years (living in Brisbane) and I love it. There is so much diversity nature-wise. It’s fascinating! I learnt a bit more about Lamington NP in this post, Thank You for sharing!!

  2. I really enjoyed this write up about ecotravel in Australia. I’m definitely interested in the tree top trails (they sound super cool) and snorkeling in the great barrier reef. I hope more countries and tourism boards will adopt sustainable travel methods/procedures.

  3. I live in Queensland and have visited those places. The Great Barrier Reef is the jewel in the crown but most of those others are great spots to experience what Queensland has to offer.

  4. Queensland! had just heard the name, but seriously never knew that it is so lovely place to be. Want to experience the tropic area its so cool, will surely plan with my buddies for sure.
    Keep Posting 🙂

  5. The Whitsundy’s and the Barrier Reef have long been places that I’ve wanted to visit. I’d never heard of the rainforest until now though. Since Australia is so big and I’ll probably have to visit it on multiple trips, I might have to look at focusing solely on theQueensland region for my first trip Down Under.

  6. Queensland looks like a paradise for me. I lives 6 months in Perth. Unfortunately I didn’t have the time at the time to travel around much, but I definately want to retun Down Under and explore more.

  7. There is no doubt that Australia has a serious advantage when it comes to natural beauty. I didn’t know that it has the most extensive rainforest in the world, I would’ve guessed like Borneo 😀 I would love to visit Queensland especially!

  8. The other half of Grassroots Nomad, Jimmy, grew up in Hervey Bay so we know the area well. Fraser Island has to be one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to in Australia so it is wonderful to see it included in the list. Great guest post!

  9. Australia looks so amazing – there’s something to see everywhere! I hope to get there someday. I love the push toward sustainable travel too, great attitude to have!

  10. I really enjoyed my time in Queensland, although it was pouring rain from a Cat 5 cyclone! Because of the weather, I missed out on a few things. This post is a good reminder of what I should do next time.

  11. The rainforest looks absolutely stunning! I’m glad to see that there were eco tours there. Were they lead by the native aboriginal population there? Also the Whitsunday islands look absolutely stunning! Would you be able to get to the Great Barrier Reef from there? Also is the Great Barrier Reef still worth visiting? (I’ve heard it’s pretty much entirely dead now.)

    1. Hi Deni. Thanks for commenting. I will pass your questions on to Nicole, who wrote the guest post. I agree that the rain-forest does look stunning. When Outside Magazine published the ‘obituary’ to the Great Barrier Reef, I don’t think it was meant to be taken literally be people. But of course the nature of social media means that it was taken on face value, shared widely without context, and made global news. Scientists were fairly quick to point out that it is not dead yet, fearing people would give up on trying to save it. The article was meant to highlight the urgency of the situation, because it is in big trouble with a large proportion of it now affected by bleaching. What is clear is that urgent action is needed to save it.

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