Winter has truly arrived in Australia with Sydney experiencing record-breaking below zero temperatures in May, and Melbourne gone from summer to winter overnight. But here’s the good news, you don’t need to travel far to beat the winter blues, with Queensland boasting a year-round tropical climate and some of the world’s best beaches right in our own backyard.
With over 1,000 spectacular, sandy strips along the Queensland coastline, it can be daunting trying to decide which ones to visit. So STA Travel has handpicked its top 5 beaches where winter will seem like a distant memory.
1. Fitzroy Island, Great Barrier Reef
Considered as one of the most unspoilt islands on Great Barrier Reef, Fitzroy Island is only 45 minutes from Cairns by high-speed ferry. The majority of the island lies within the protected Fitzroy Island National Park, which includes open woodland, tropical rainforest and coral beaches. Surrounded by a reef system that forms part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, it makes a perfect base for snorkelling, diving and exploring the reef first hand. If you have always wanted to experience Australia’s Great Natural Wonder, then this is the ideal launching pad.
2. Whitehaven Beach, Whitsundays
Located on the largest of the 74 islands in the Whitsundays, Whitehaven Beach is not just impressive for its size. Its pristine white silica sand, stretching over seven kilometres along the eastern coast of the island, is amongst the purest in the world. As soon as you step onto the beach, it is not hard to see why it is one of the most photographed places in Australia. For the very best view, head to Tongue Point and watch the swirling sands of Hill Inlet. An Instagramworthy getaway is a good getaway!
3. 1770 Beach, Agnes Waters
Sitting on the tip of a peninsula on Queensland’s central coast, 1770 Beach is a hidden gem. The clear warm water at this picturesque beach makes it a perfect place to surf, and if you’re travelling south down the east coast, it is also the first surfable beach. 177o is historically significant because it’s the first place Captain Cook made landfall in Queensland and no wonder he decided to stay!
4. Four Mile Beach, Port Douglas
Four Mile Beach begins at the northern rocky headland of Port Douglas and continues for four more miles without any concrete development in sight. Whether you decide to take it all in on foot or cycle along the sand, Four Mile Beach offers uninterrupted ocean to rainforest views. If you are stuck in the daily grind longing for nature, it is the beach for you. Snorkel in the calm water or spend the day sunbaking listening to nothing but palm trees in the breeze. …head here for a real breather.
5. Tea Tree Bay, Noosa
Noosa is a favourite winter getaway destination for locals and tourists alike. One of its most popular beaches is Tea Tree Bay; a stunning stretch of sand where the beach is your oyster – fishing, surfing, stand-up-paddle boarding, swimming or sunbaking. You can easily get there by on foot via one of Noosa National Park’s many walking tracks. And an inside tip: koalas are often spotted in the trees behind the beach, so keep yours eyes open.
If this isn’t enough incentive to jump on a plane right away, STA Travel are offering free hotel nights in Queensland at http://www.statravel.com.au/beach-escapes-australia.htm, plus you can lay-by your domestic flight for just $29. So there’s no reason not to turn up the temperature this winter – pack your swimmers and get your camera ready to start inspiring some FOMO from Queensland where the sun shines all year round.