13 Beaches in Queensland You Have To Visit

by Rose Foster

Looking for a nice getaway? Seeking the cooling embrace of the sea, or the fine cushion of white sand beneath your feet? Look no further. Queensland offers some of the most gorgeous and jaw-dropping beaches in Australia, and the world. Take you pick from our top 13 beaches in Queensland, and be sure to pay a visit during your Big Lap of Australia.

1. Whitehaven Beach, Whitsundays

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Sink your toes into the white silica sands of the renowned and award-winning Whitehaven Beach. The soft, cool white sandy beach hugged by sparkling turquoise waters is famous the world over.

The island is accessible by boat, seaplane & helicopter from Airlie Beach, as well as Hamilton Island. Talk about traveling Australia in style.

Trust us when we say you do not want to miss out on this hidden gem during your Big Lap.

The sand contains 98% silica meaning it is extremely fine and soft, with some comparing the consistency to that of baby powder. Because of the silica, the sand doesn’t retain heat and makes it a fantastic place to walk barefoot, even on a hot day.

If the gorgeous sand isn’t enough for you picky travelers, then take a dip in the crystal-clear water. A swim in this sea is a truly unforgettable experience.

Other things to do:

  • Scale the lookout.
  • Relax on the beach. 
  • Dip in the warm water, and enjoy the view.
  • Spot turtles and other marine life.
  • Visit Hill Inlet.
  • Test your fitness

Find out more here. 

2. Nudey Beach, Fitzroy Island

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There’s a reason why this treasure was named the best of Australia’s 11,761 beaches. That’s right. It didn’t come second. It didn’t come third. It came first. Number uno. So we think it’s safe to say Nudey Beach is a must-see.

Nudey Beach and its white coral-sand is a 45-minute ferry ride from Cairns, a $78 return trip for adults, and camping on the island is a mere $25 a night. Pretty fair for such an amazing experience, right?

This small stretch of pristine white sand and coral beach is nestled in amongst the Great Barrier Reef, surrounded by coral and rich colorful marine life and is covered in tropical rainforest. This place is perfect for some alone time too – you’ll often be sharing the entire beach with only a few other visitors.

You can even swim and snorkel amongst the colorful marine life that live in the shallow coral reefs that fringe the beach, only a few meters out from the shore, making it the perfect place for children on learner swimmers to see the Great Barrier Reef from complete safety and comfort.

We told you this place was a treasure. What are you waiting for?

Find out more here.


3. Four-Mile Beach, Port Douglas

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This safe, patrolled beach is the perfect spot to stay on your journey along the Great Barrier Reef Drive. Enjoy its compact white send and calm coral sea, or hire a bike and ride along its, you guessed it, four-mile-long beach. The number of activities available are endless, from kitesurfing lessons, to stand-up paddleboarding, to snorkeling the reef and sea life from above.

Tap into your adventurous spirit with a kitesurfing lesson or hire a stand-up paddleboard and see the fringing reef and sea life from above.

Four Mile Beach is also host to a number of events each year, including the family fun-filled Beach Day during Port Douglas Carnivale and features in the course for sporting events triathlons, mountain bike races, outrigging races, and running festivals.

Find out more here.

4. Palm Cove

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🌴❤️ From Palm Cove, Happy #mothersday! We hope you have a wonderful day full of love. Do you have plans to celebrate in a unique way today? 🌞 Thanks to all of the beautiful mums, grandmas, aunties and other ladies in our lives – you are the best 📸 @_sarahlatham ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #reefhouse #reefhousepalmcove #palmcove #cairns #queensland #thisisqueensland #seeaustralia #australia #holidayherethisyear #accor #tropicalnorthqueensland #beautifulonedayperfectthenext #beautifuldestinations #happyplace

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As Australia’s Cleanest Beach for many years, Palm Cove is without a doubt one of the most gorgeous beaches in Australia. This idyllic tropical beach is only littered by the offerings of mother nature over the changing seasons throughout the year.

Things to do:

  • Experience the stunning beaches, resorts, and scenery where the rainforest hugs the shores of the Great Barrier Reef at Palm Cove Beach.
  • Explore the waters on a kayak or sailboat and take in the views of forested hills rising up behind the beach’s string of swaying palm trees.
  • Enjoy the sunset with an invigorating drink in hand, or a tropical juice from one of the nearby oceanfront cafes
  • Go for a swim in the clear waters, which are patrolled year-round by lifeguards.

You’ll never run out of things to do at Palm Cove.

Find out more here.

5. Cape Hillsborough, Mackay

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Cape Hillsborough is a real Australian cliché. When you land in Mackay, you’ll straight away see images of Cape Hillsborough and its kangaroos. There’s no better place to get in touch with these gorgeous creatures than Mackay. At sunrise, wallabies come on the beautiful beach to feed. The best is to drive up there just after you land in Mackay and spend the night nearby. You can wake up early the next day to share the beach with the most iconic Australian animal.

Watching the sun rising on a beautiful beach, surrounded by the beautiful Cape Hillsborough national park and its kangaroos… it’s simply postcard perfect.

Find out more here.

6. Noosa Main Beach, Sunshine Coast

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This is the best beach for those of you who are not so confident in the surf, as its gentle waves and trusted lifesaver ensure the utmost level of safety. And if you’re looking to learn to surf, come on by! The easy waves are perfect to start off your surfing journey.

Moderate waves and safe for swimming all year round, Noosa Main Beach is patrolled 365 days a year and is only steps away from famous Hastings Street shopping, accommodation, restaurants, and bars.

Noosa Main Beach just across the boardwalk from bustling Hastings Street in Noosa Heads, or, if you’ve booked beachfront accommodation, just stroll across the courtyard to the golden sands and clear waters of this always-popular beach.

Find out more here.

7. Rainbow Beach, Sunshine Coast

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Famous for its dramatic dunes and swirling colored sands, the coastal town of Rainbow Beach is a major entry point to the Cooloola National Park and the southern gateway to World Heritage-listed Fraser Island. Rainbow Beach is the aquatic lover’s playground, and is also rooted heavily in history.

The town’s name derives from the rainbow-colored sand dunes surrounding the settlement.

According to the legends of the Kabi people, the dunes were colored when Yiningie, a spirit represented by a rainbow, plunged into the cliffs after doing battle with an evil tribesman.

Find out more here.

8. Tangalooma Beach, Brisbane

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Sheltered between Moreton Island and Moreton Bay, the Tangalooma Beach is a beautiful white sandy beach with calm waters, making it inviting for a swim, snorkel, kayak, paddleboard or even just floating around on an inflatable flamingo (yes we have seen it). Only a few meters walk from the resort center providing food and drinks makes Tangalooma a perfect beach for all resort guests alike. Let’s not also forget the nightly attendance of a family of wild dolphins, right beside the jetty on Tangalooma beach!

Please remember that there are no lifeguards patrolling anywhere on Moreton Island. Please use caution when swimming/surfing as strong currents are often seen around the Tangalooma Wrecks and the surfside of the island and remember it is never a good idea to swim alone.

Find out more here.

9. Mooloolaba Main Beach, Sunshine Coast

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Mooloolaba is the place where dreams come true. Everything you could possibly desire in a beach vacation is right at your fingertips – beach holiday bliss guaranteed!

Mooloolaba Beach has featured in TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Beaches list two years running – and it’s not hard to see why. Golden sand, clear waters and a gentle beach break make this stretch of coast one of the best places in Australia to pitch your beach umbrella and get some vitamin sea (yes, we just did that).

What are you waiting for? Head over to Mooloolaba now!

Find out more here.

10. Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast

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Burleigh Heads is where stunning views and bustling attractions come to meet in an explosion of wonder. The Burleigh foreshore is home to towering fragrant pine trees characteristic of the coast and in this parkland there are plenty of places in which to picnic or barbecue. This is also an ideal spot for regular art and craft markets, as well as some mouth-watering meals along the beachfront.

There’s never a dull moment at Burleigh.

Find out more here.

11. Street Beach, Brisbane

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Not many people can say they’ve been to a man-made urban beach with enough water to fill five Olympic-sized swimming pools. Luckily for you, Brisbane’s got you covered.

Right in the middle of the city of Brisbane, surrounded by skyscrapers, lifeguards patrol a stretch of sand lined with palm trees. South East Queensland is renowned for its beaches, but this is the only one that’s nowhere near the ocean. 

Find out more here.

12. Mission Beach, North Queensland

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Mission Beach is home to some of the most gorgeous features and scenery that Australia has to offer – let alone Queensland. This patch of paradise features a dreamy, laid-back vibe that locals crave for.

Cruise along the white-golden sands, or take a dip into the languid waters.

Mission Beach was the birthplace of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and is the closest access point for the reef, less than 40km offshore. It’s a quiet, uncrowded area of the reef and you’re unlikely to have to share your snorkeling or diving spot with any other boats.

The area around Mission Beach is also home to one of the highest concentrations of the endangered cassowary in Australia. These large flightless birds can be spotted walking through fields and gardens, and even occasionally swimming across rivers.


And there’s plenty more to offer, from trips to the nearby town, to an exhilarating time at the white-water rafting spot close to the beach.

Find out more here.

13. 75 Mile Beach, Fraser Island 

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Seventy-Five Mile Beach is the sand highway that runs the length of Fraser Island.

It is only suitable for 4WD and must be used with caution: the tides and winds cause changes hidden bumps, dips and washouts that can be hard to spot on the road! Despite all of this, it is known as one of the most fun 4WD treks in the world. As its a beach, its accessibility is determined by the tides. But once the waves allow access to the fine sand, you’ll be able to enjoy the scenic ocean views, as well as the gorgeous stretches of golden sea shells. 

Driving along the sand highway of Fraser Island is a must while spending time in Australia. The scenery is unbeatable as you have the open ocean on one side and island views on the other as you make your way around.

Along 75 mile Beach, you will also find Indian Head Lookout, Champagne Pools, and the Maheno Shipwreck, among others, which are all highlights of the island.

Note: Swimming is not permitted. Although the waters are great for diving, it is not suitable for swimming.

Find out more here. 


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