Queensland’s Tropical Coast and Great Barrier Reef Islands Fly-Drive

18 nights from £3,445 per person

Best time to travel DEC - MAR

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Itinerary Highlights

  • Explore the world's largest sand island by 4WD on a two night Fraser Island adventure
  • Snorkel over the Great Barrier Reef directly from the beach at Heron Island
  • Sail through Whitsundays, 74 rainforest clad islands off the coast of Airlie Beach
  • Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Tropical North Queensland on a 4WD rainforest adventure

What's Included

  • Inspiring Travel Company - Accommodation Throughout Accommodation Throughout
  • Inspiring Travel Company - Car Hire Car Hire
  • Inspiring Travel Company - International Flights International Flights
18 nights from £3,445 per person
Best time to travel DEC - MAR
All of our holidays are tailor-made to your requirements by an expert Travel Specialist
Enquire Now Video Consultation

Enjoy fine dining along Noosa's upscale Hastings Street, take a 4WD adventure on the world's largest sand island, Fraser Island and discover Australia's greatest nature wonder, the Great Barrier Reef at Heron Island. Sail through the tropical Whitsunday Islands and explore the ancient rainforests of Daintree and Cape Tribulation.

Embark on an 18-night fly-drive adventure along Queensland’s magnificent coastline from Brisbane in the south to Port Douglas in the Tropical North. Indulge in fine dining and peruse exclusive boutiques in the upscale seaside towns of Noosa and Port Douglas.

Take a four-wheel drive adventure across the world’s largest sand island, Fraser Island, exploring its inland lakes and rainforests. Catch a catamaran to Heron Island, on the southern reaches of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, where there is always something on the wildlife calendar throughout the year, including nesting birds, hatching turtles and migrating whales.

Cross the Tropic of Capricorn and travel through endless sugar cane fields to Airlie Beach, the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands. Choose to relax and take in the wonderful views of the rainforest clad islands, or hop on a boat and take a picnic on the pristine Whitehaven Beach.

Enjoy the unspoiled tropical paradise of Mission Beach or for a thrilling time whitewater raft the Tully River. Drive through remote farming communities and the Atherton Tablelands, stopping at the raging Millaa Millaa Waterfall and visit Mareeba Tropical Savanna and Wetlands Reserve, a sanctuary for wetland flora and fauna. Your final stop is Port Douglas, the gateway to the Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation, explore this pristine wilderness on a four-wheel drive adventure heading deep into this ancient rainforest.


Day 1  UK to Brisbane

Take a flight from the UK to Brisbane, Queensland’s capital city.

Day 2  Arrive Brisbane

Arrive at Brisbane Airport, catch the efficient Brisbane Airtrain to Central Station where your hotel is located directly above. The remainder of the day is for you to discover the city’s highlights at your leisure. Relax by the lagoon and man-made beach on South Bank or enjoy a picnic in the lush Royal Botanical Gardens, bordered by the Brisbane River and Parliament House.
Hotel – Sofitel Brisbane

Day 3  Brisbane to Noosa (92 miles)

Drive north out of Brisbane towards Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, encompassing lively beach resorts and the peaceful hinterland of rolling lush valleys and magnificent mountains. Take a diversion through the Glass House Mountains National Park, stopping at the numerous scenic viewpoints. Follow the Bruce Highway and stop at Eumundi Markets or take the Sunshine Motorway via seaside resorts such as Mooloolooba and Coolum to the upscale resort of Noosa.

Day 4  Noosa

Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of this desirable seaside village. Stroll along Hastings Street, perusing the boutiques and galleries, stopping at a pavement café to people watch at your leisure. Soak up the sun at Main Beach or hike through Noosa National Park in search of hidden beaches and the expansive Alexandria Bay. Look out for koalas while hiking through the forests, there are reported to be up to 30-resident in the park.

Day 5  Noosa to Fraser Island (122 miles)

Depart Noosa early for Hervey Bay, secure your car at River Heads, Hervey Bay before boarding the ferry to Fraser Island, the world’s largest sand island. You will be staying at the award-winning Kingfisher Bay Resort, a beautiful eco-resort, surrounded by nature. Enjoy an afternoon by the pool or in the day spa, or learn more about Fraser Island’s World Heritage-listed wilderness, Aboriginal culture, bush tucker and bush medicines.

Day 6  Fraser Island

Spend a day out off-roading on Kingfisher Bay’s Four-wheel Drive Beauty Spots Tour. Visit the island’s top attractions that include the gorgeous Lake McKenzie. Drive along Seventy-Five Mile Beach to the Maheno shipwreck and coloured sands of The Pinnacles. Follow the boardwalk along Eli Creek through banksia and pandanus then float back down towards the beach where up to four million litres of water pours in to the ocean each day.

Day 7  Fraser Island to Agnes Water (156 miles)

Return to Hervey Bay on one of the scheduled catamaran crossings and continue the drive north. Stop at Bundaberg, a historic sugar cane city and home of Bundaberg Rum, take a diversion to Mon Repos Regional Park where eastern Australia’s largest concentration of nesting sea turtles can be found. Continue past lush green sugar cane fields until you reach Agnes Water where you can enjoy a stroll on the serene beach.
Hotel – Lagoons 1770 Resort and Spa

Day 8  Agnes Water to Gladstone (Heron Island) (78 miles)

A leisurely morning’s drive will bring you to Gladstone where you will catch the Heron Islander catamaran early afternoon to the exclusive Heron Island, on the southern end of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. There is an abundance of wildlife that will amaze you, from nesting turtles and migrating whales to thousands of birds during nesting season.
Hotel – Heron Island

Day 9  Heron Island

Although the island is small enough for you to be able to walk around in 20-minutes, it has everything you need for a relaxing barrier Reef Island experience. Relax by the pool, stroll along the beach or swim directly out on to the reef and snorkel amongst a sea full of colourful tropical fish, turtles and rays. Certified divers can head out on one of three fully equipped dive boats.
Hotel – Heron Island

Day 10  Heron Island

Island activities such as the semi-submersible, diving, fishing, kayaking and sunset cruises can be arranged at an additional cost. There is always a wildlife spectacle for you to enjoy any time of year, with turtles nesting and hatching between November and February, birds nesting between February and September and whales migrating June to September.
Hotel – Heron Island

Day 11  (Heron Island) Gladstone to Mackay (275 miles)

Take the morning catamaran crossing back to Gladstone to continue your drive north to Mackay. Stop at Capricorn Caves and tour through this magnificent limestone cave network. Continue along the Bruce Highway to Mackay, where sugar cane fields dominate the landscape. Spend the evening at Mackay’s Marina Village with its impressive array of shops, bars and restaurants.
Hotel – Clarion Hotel Mackay Marina

Day 12  Mackay to Airlie Beach (92 miles or 156 miles via Eungella National Park)

We suggest a slight diversion into this morning to the isolated Eungella National Park. This area of natural beauty with forest-clad mountains is one of Queensland’s most ecologically diverse parks. There is an abundance of wildlife, a haven for platypus and the Eungella honeyeater and the park has more of 12-miles of walking tracks taking you through rainforests, past waterfalls and to the impressive Finch Hatton Gorge.
Hotel – Mirage Whitsundays

Day 13  Airlie Beach

Airlie Beach is the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands, a collection of 74 rainforest clad islands, most of which are uninhabited, that sit off the Queensland Coast in the Coral Sea. There are several experiences we can arrange for you from Ocean Rafting to Sunset Cruises, picnics on the pure white sands of Whitehaven Beach or full day cruises to the Outer Great Barrier Reef.
Hotel – Mirage Whitsundays

Day 14  Airlie Beach to Townsville (170 miles)

Travel north through Bowen, where its claim to fame is a large fibreglass mango that sits next to the town’s tourist office. Continue to Townsville, home to The Reef HQ Aquarium where you can tour through the Sea Turtle Hospital. Sick and injured sea turtles are cared for and rehabilitated here. In the evening, stroll along The Strand, a waterfront walkway affording spectacular views across to Magnetic Island.
Hotel – Grand Hotel and Apartments

Day 15  Townsville to Mission Beach (146 miles)

Follow the Bruce Highway catching glimpses of the Coral Sea and islands such as Hinchinbrook, an untouched tropical paradise popular with hikers that take the 20-mile Thorsborne Trail through cloud-cloaked mountains, rainforest and along wild natural beaches. Arrive in Mission Beach, an unspoilt tropical paradise of golden sandy beach and World Heritage-protected rainforest.
Hotel – Castaways Resort & Spa

Day 16  Mission Beach

Australia’s Great Barrier is only 23 miles off-shore, the closest mainland access point and only just over an hour away, meaning less time travelling and more time for you to explore this magnificent underwater world. For real thrill seekers, consider a full day tour to include up to 5 hours of white water rafting on the Tully River.
Hotel – Castaways Resort & Spa

Day 17  Mission Beach to Port Douglas (126 miles or 164 miles via Atherton Tablelands)

Choose to take the coastal route along the Captain Cook Highway to Port Douglas, passing through Cairns and Palm Cove, or head inland through fields of sugar cane and climb up through the highlands passing through farming communities of the Atherton Tablelands. Stop at Millaa Milla Falls and enjoy a refreshing swim in the waterhole, continue to Mareeba Tropical Savanna and Wetlands Reserve, a sanctuary for wetland flora and fauna.
Hotel – Peninsula Boutique Hotel

Day 18  Port Douglas

Port Douglas is the gateway to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation. This upscale town sits on the majestic 4-mile beach where you can swim in the clear waters or doze under the palms. There are plenty of adventure activities to get your adrenaline pumping too, from ziplining through the canopy of the Daintree Rainforest to Mountain Biking on the Bump Trail along a historic gold rush trail.
Hotel – Peninsula Boutique Hotel

Day 19  Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation 4WD Adventure

Head in to the World Heritage-listed Daintree Rainforest and up to Cape Tribulation on a four-wheel drive adventure with Billy Tea Safaris. Look out for estuarine crocodiles on the Daintree River. Wander through the rainforest on an elevated boardwalk and take a refreshing dip in the freshwater Emmagen Creek. Enjoy a relaxing evening strolling along Macrossan Street and Marina, perusing the boutiques and stopping for dinner in one of resorts many eateries.
Hotel – Peninsula Boutique Hotel

Day 20  Port Douglas to UK

Today your Queensland self-drive adventure comes to an end when you drop your rental vehicle at Cairns International Airport in time for your flight back to the UK.

Queensland’s Tropical Coast and Great Barrier Reef Islands Fly-Drive
18 nights from £3,445 per person
All of our holidays are tailor-made to your requirements by an expert Travel Specialist
Enquire Now
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