Queensland Bucket List: 75 Incredible Things To Do

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Are you looking for the best things to do in Queensland? This is the ultimate Queensland bucket list, with some of the most spectacular and adventurous things to do in the sunshine state of Australia. But don’t worry, there’s plenty of low-thrill fun to be had too! And some of the most scenic places in the country.

With 75 exciting activities to do in Queensland, from Brisbane and South East Queensland, all the way up to the top of tropical Queensland. 

If this list doesn’t make you want to visit Queensland, nothing will!

Planning to road trip Queensland? Read our Jucy campervan review!

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The Ultimate Queensland Bucket List

As Queenslanders ourselves, we know a thing or two about how lucky we are to live in this Aussie state! We are blessed with some beautiful places on our doorstep and plenty more worth travelling for. 

And there are still plenty of spectacular sights and tourist attractions that didn’t make this list too. We might be biased, but we reckon Queensland is the best place to visit in Australia

You can read our guide on the best places to visit in Queensland here, in case you need extra help planning your visit, but let’s get into the good stuff!

Best Things To Do In Queensland Australia

Here are 75 Queensland attractions and experiences that belong on everyone’s QLD bucket list: 

1. Scuba Dive Or Snorkel The Great Barrier Reef

Man snorkelling with gopro camera in hand.

The most famous coral reef system in the world and UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Great Barrier Reef is a natural wonder that needs to be experienced. This protected coral reef is so big, it can be seen from space on satellite images. 

There are a lot of great ways to experience the Great Barrier Reef and plenty of places in QLD that you can visit from but we think one of the best ways is to do a snorkel or scuba diving tour in the outer reef from North Queensland or our other favourite – a Lady Musgrave Island snorkelling tour.  

On our most recent visit, we swam alongside sea turtles and enormous fish. It was magic! 

But even if you’re not keen to get into the water, you can still get a taste of its beauty. There are glass bottom boat or semi-submerged boat tours or take a scenic flight over the reef. 

2. Float Down Eli Creek At Fraser Island

Fraser island is one of the most popular places to go camping in Queensland, but even if you aren’t a camper, you can spend a day or 5 enjoying the beauty of Fraser Island. 

One of the coolest experiences to have on Fraser Island, or K’gari, as it is now known, is grabbing a pool float and floating your way down Eli Creek. 

This tranquil experience through the tropical rainforest can get pretty busy during the summer months so come down for an early morning float and beat the crowds.

3. Wildlife Spotting In The Daintree Rainforest

daintree river cruise daintree rainforest.

If exploring ancient rainforests isn’t on your bucket list, it should be! The Daintree National Park is the oldest rainforest in the world and one of the most beautiful too.

It’s also a perfect place to spot wildlife. 

Take a Daintree River cruise and see if you can spot saltwater crocodiles. There’s also plenty of bird life, reptiles and ground animals if you keep alert. Or even a wild pig roaming around near Mossman Gorge. That was an unexpected sighting I had last visit. 

You can easily visit the Daintree from Cairns or take a guided tour.

4. Learn The History Of Paronella Park

paronella park day trip from cairns.

If you’re wondering what the most popular attraction in Queensland is, aside from the glorious natural wonders, one that tops many lists is Paronella Park – the Spanish castle in the jungle.

This is the last thing you expect to find in the rainforests in Tropical North Queensland but it is by far an experience you won’t want to miss. Come to learn the romantic and inspirational story of Joseph Paronella and his dream turned reality. 

While the buildings are now in various states of ruin, restoration efforts are always working to bring them back to their former glory and there is so much to see when you visit. 

They also have a free camping ground for ticket holders and a nighttime light show that is meant to be incredible. We haven’t had the chance to go at night but it’s a must for next time. 

5. Go Whale Watching In Hervey Bay

See majestic humpback whales in the wild as they migrate each year along the Australian coastline. 

Hervey Bay is considered the whale-watching capital of Australia and during the migration season between July and October, this is one of the best places to see the whales. 

Book a whale-watching tour for a great chance of seeing whales and their young before they head off again in November.

6. Climb The Brisbane Story Bridge

Brisbane Story bridge.

You might be aware of the Sydney Harbour Bridge climb experience, but did you know you can also climb the Brisbane Story Bridge?

We first did the Story Bridge Climb back when it was in its early days of offering the unique Brisbane experience. These days you can often see groups at different points of the bridge as they take in the views of the Brisbane CBD and Brisbane River.

The best time to climb? Sunrise or sunset so you get the best of city lights and daylight but any time of the day means epic views. 

7. Snorkel The Wrecks At Tangalooma

tangalooma wrecks beach.

The Tangalooma Wrecks off Moreton Island are iconic in Queensland and one of the most recognisable wreck sites in the state.

They were intentionally placed a great many years ago and now they have created a spectacular underwater ecosystem for a variety of marine life.

You can swim to the wrecks off the beach of Moreton Island during a Moreton camping or resort stay at Tangalooma Island Resort. It’s a 75-minute ferry ride from Brisbane. 

Or take a dolphin-watching cruise that combines wildlife spotting and snorkelling for one of the best Brisbane day trips

The view of the Queensland coast and wrecks from the top of the sand dunes is pretty spectacular too. 

8. Sail Out To The Whitsundays Islands

If there is a place in Queensland that is on many bucket lists, that is certainly the Whitsunday Islands!

This island network consists of 74 different islands. While some are small sand cays, others are home to resorts and campgrounds.

But the best way to explore the Whitsundays is certainly by boat! There are sailing tours departing every day out to the different islands or to multiple islands in one day, with many visiting beautiful Whitehaven Beach. 

Some of the most popular islands in the Whitsundays include Daydream Island, Hamilton Island, Hayman Island and Long Island. 

9. Cuddle A Koala At Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

lone pine koala sanctuary.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is the closest wildlife sanctuary to Brisbane and while it is still a bit of a distance from the city centre, you can enjoy a river cruise up the Brisbane River, all the way to Lone Pine. 

This is one of the best places to visit in Queensland for native animal encounters. Feed the kangaroos and cuddle a koala while you’re there. 

Lone Pine holds a special place in my heart since it was where I did my high school work experience, back when I wanted to be a zoologist studying animals in the African savannah. That dream didn’t pan out, but we love taking our kids here now. 

10. Ride The Scenic Railway To Kuranda 

kuranda scenic railway.

One of the best day trips from Cairns is to the mountain town of Kuranda and the best way to get there is by riding the Kuranda Scenic Railway.

This unique historic train experience takes you through the beautiful mountain range with some of the best viewing points for the incredible Baron Falls – one of the best waterfalls near Cairns.

In Kuranda, you will find plenty of fun things to do, such as markets, a Butterfly House and a wildlife sanctuary, plus walking tracks and plenty of places to eat. 

You can either catch the Kuranda Scenic Rail back down again or take the Kuranda Skyrail Rainforest Cable Car for a whole different perspective from above. You can get a combination ticket that includes both experiences.

11. Get Your Thrills At The Gold Coast Theme Parks

dreamworld winterfest.

The Gold Coast is home to Queensland’s biggest thrill rides. Okay… probably Australia’s best thrill rides if we’re being totally honest.

All the best theme parks call the Gold Coast their home.

Meet your favourite characters at Movie World where you will also find the best roller coasters in Queensland. See the dolphin show and have plenty of toddler-friendly fun at SeaWorld. Or enjoy the best of both worlds with wildlife encounters and thrill rides at Dreamworld

One of our favourite places to stay is Seaworld Resort because you can get a package deal that includes theme park entry, for Sea World, Movie World and Wet N Wild.

Get a 3-day theme park pass for Movieworld, SeaWorld & WetnWild or a Dreamworld & WhiteWater World 3 day pass to make the most of your theme park time!

12. Stay Overnight At Green Island

having a drink at green island bar.

Another must-do for your Cairns itinerary is a visit to Green Island. You can do a day trip and spend a half or a full day enjoying the island activities or extend your visit for an overnight stay.

Green Island Resort is an eco-resort on a sand cay in the Great Barrier Reef. This beautiful island is small enough to walk the perimeter in about an hour but there is a surprising amount of fun things to do.

It’s one of the best places we have been for snorkelling with kids since there is a lifeguard-patrolled beach that you can snorkel from.

There is also a crocodile and reptile park with daily animal shows, a restaurant and bar and a swimming pool that can be used by hotel guests and day visitors. 

But the best moments are when the sun sets over the reef and all the day visitors have gone back to the mainland! 

13. Take A Dip At Southbank Beach

southbank brisbane.

Did you know there is a beach right in the Brisbane CBD? Yes, it’s a man-made beach but it’s still fantastic for cooling down during the Queensland summer months. 

The beach is patrolled by a lifeguard, as is the swimming pool area. Plus there are water splash areas making it a load of fun for kids of all ages. 

14. Meet The Animals At The Llama Farm

the llama farm video.

There aren’t many animals quite as cute as a llama and the largest herd of llamas in Queensland lives near Ipswich in the western suburbs. 

The Llama Farm is a working farm that opens its gates on weekends and school holidays for farm tours and guided llama walks and the whole experience is really fun.

You get to meet all the animals of the farm, including camels, donkeys, horses, giant rabbits and geese, the beautiful Maremma dogs and of course, the llamas. Feed the llamas and get to know their personality quirks. So much fun!

Or you can take a sunset walk along the banks of the Brisbane River with your own personal llama friend instead. This experience is for adults and older kids or teens and is perfect for some magical photo opportunities.

15. Watch The Croc Show At Australia Zoo

robert irwin feeding a crocodile at australia zoo.

Most people around the world know who the Irwins are and Australia Zoo was the dream come true for passionate wildlife warrior Steve Irwin. While Steve is no longer with us, Australia Zoo continues to carry on his legacy with his family keeping his dream alive.

This is by far the best zoo in Queensland and the passion for wildlife is held by each of the staff at the zoo, making it a pretty special place to visit. 

Australia Zoo is located in Beerwah, not far from the beautiful Glass House Mountains in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland so it’s a good excuse to stay and explore this beautiful region while you’re here.

Get your Australia Zoo tickets online.

16. Take A Nature Hike Through Noosa National Park

Noosa National Park is a stunning area of natural beauty, with kilometres of trails and plenty of wildlife.

Embark on a nature hike through the park to explore its diverse ecosystems, breathtaking views and hidden gems. This is an experience you won’t soon forget!

17. Feed The Lorikeets At Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

feeding kangaroo at currumbin wildlife sanctuary.

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary on the Gold Coast is a wonderful day out for the family and one of the most popular Gold Coast attractions.

Here you will see plenty of native Australian wildlife. There are also playgrounds and play zones the kids will love. 

One of the most well-known experiences at Currumbin Sanctuary is feeding the lorikeets. They hand out trays of food and the bird swarm you for a feast. It’s a lot of fun… usually!

As a kid I had a lorikeet sneeze it’s gross food into my mouth, so I’ve been a tad traumatised by it since. I only feed them with my mouth closed now. HA!

18. Walk An Alpaca At O’Reillys Canungra Vineyard

child with alpaca at oreilleys Canungra vineyard.

There are some wonderful vineyards in the Gold Coast Hinterland and the Canungra Winery and Vineyard is absolutely a favourite place to do a wine tasting and grab a bite to eat. They have a delicious Moscato.

But the kids will tell you that it’s the alpacas that are really the best part! 

You can ‘rent’ your own alpaca to hang out with. The sessions start at 15 minutes for up to 3 people to walk with and feed an alpaca but you can extend your session and enjoy walking along the river banks with your new friend. 

We had an alpaca called Lucky and he was food-obsessed! It was so much fun!

19. Explore The Caves At Atherton Tablelands

The Atherton Tablelands is an area of spectacular scenery, home to ancient caves and underground streams. You can take a guided tour through the caves to discover its unique history and explore mysterious formations. 

The trip to the Atherton Tablelands also takes you past some of the biggest mountain ranges in the area and the most breathtaking waterfalls, along the Atherton Waterfall trail. 

20. Taste Wines in Stanthorpe

Each state of Australia has its own wine region and in Queensland, that region is the Granite Belt. One of the most popular places to visit in the Granite Belt is Stanthorpe. 

You would be forgiven if you thought Stanthorpe was actually part of NSW. This border town is unusually cold in comparison to the rest of Queensland. This is because of its high altitude above sea level. Sometimes it even snows! 

But that’s what makes for such perfect grape and apple growing! This is the place to come for winery tours and to grab yourself some fresh produce to take home. 

21. Practice Your Shots At Top Golf

Love golf? Even if you’ve never played before, Top Golf is a lot of fun! This Gold Coast attraction is a high-tech driving range and drinks lounge, with a full-service bar and menu!

You don’t need to be good at golf to have fun here.

22. Be Amazed At Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Surfers Paradise

world's tallest man statue at ripleys believe it or not gold coast.

The Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Museums are always a lot of fun for all ages and the Surfers Paradise museum is no exception. Simon and I have been visiting here since we were kids and there is always something new to see and learn.

The oddity museum is full of quirky facts and real-life stories of people and things that defy the odds and blow our minds. They even have a Star Wars exhibit as of our recent visit, but things are always changing.

This is by far one of the best ways to spend a rainy day on the Gold Coast too.

23. See Marine Life At SEALife Sunshine Coast

sealife aquarium sunshine coast.

SEALife Aquarium in Mooloolaba is a fun way to spend a couple of hours seeing the marine life you wouldn’t normally get to see.

The aquarium is located on the Mooloolaba Wharf so you can easily make a day of your visit, starting with an aquarium visit and seal show then following it with lunch at one of the many restaurants on the waterfront.

It is one of the most popular things to do on the Sunshine Coast. Especially on a rainy day!

And finishing with ice cream at the ice cream parlour. That’s how our day usually ends! 

24. Camp At Rainbow Beach

drone image of inskip point peninsula.

If you’re looking for fun things to do in Queensland that involve a bit of adventure, then camping at Rainbow Beach is the perfect way to spend your time. Pitch your tent and explore this beautiful coastal area brimming with things to see and do. 

From snorkelling and swimming to fishing, horse riding on the beach and hiking – Rainbow Beach is considered one of the most beautiful beach camping areas in Australia!

25. Enjoy A Drink With A View At Howard Street Wharves

view of story bridge from felons brewing co.

By far the best place to get a drink with a view is at the Howard Street Wharves. It helps that you can get some great food too!

This is a newer dining precinct in Brisbane, converting these former functional wharves into a family-friendly riverfront precinct. 

Our favourite place is Felons Brewery which is enormous, with plenty of seating right along the river with views of the Story Bridge and the passing boats.

There are also grassy areas with beanbags and a playground for the kids. Sometimes there is live music and food trucks too. This is the ultimate Sunday arvo session spot!

26. Ride A Bike Around Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island is an easy day trip from Townsville by ferry and the perfect place to explore by bike. Rent a bike for the day and enjoy its stunning beaches, natural beauty and wildlife. 

Magnetic Island has one of the largest colonies of koalas in the wild!

27. Sample The Flavours At Bundaberg Brewed Drinks

Bundaberg Brewed Drinks are pretty famous here in Australia and you can get the different flavours in supermarkets and cafes. But it’s so much more fun when you can visit the source!

A Bundaberg Brewed Drinks tour is great value as it takes you on a short self-paced tour of the museum to learn how the drinks are made, and then you get to enjoy a tasting.

You can taste every single flavour they have on offer or just the ones you most want to try. And the best bit is you get some drinks included in your tour to take home with you. Woohoo! 

28. Dinner & A Show At Australian Outback Spectacular

Experience the Australian outback with a 3-course meal, without leaving the Gold Coast! Located between Movieworld and WetNWild, you will find this unique stage show that brings to life the outback with a live performance.

The Australian Outback Spectacular has music, farm animals and incredible horse stunts as they tell the story. All the while, you’re enjoying a delicious meal with Aussie flavours. 

This is a fun experience, especially if this is your first visit to Australia and you want to get a bit of outback culture – without visiting outback Queensland!

29. Go White Water Rafting In Tropical Queensland

White water rafting is one of the most exciting things to do in Queensland if you love adventure – and there are a few places offering this exciting activity.  

Take a day tour from Cairns for a once-in-a-lifetime experience on the Tully River, or along Barron River in Barron Gorge National Park.

The Tully River experience is considered one of the best across Australia and New Zealand, which is a huge call! 

We haven’t had the chance to go yet but my brother did many years ago and said it was the best thing he’s ever done! Massive call! 

30. Laze About On Four Mile Beach In Port Douglas

four mile beach port douglas.

Port Douglas is a popular place to stay in north Queensland if you’re keen on beach days and sunshine. There is a net area for swimming that keeps the not-so-friendly sea creatures out at One Mile Beach.

There’s also a scenic lookout at one end of the beach too.

31. Road Trip Brisbane To Cairns

By far one of the best road trip routes to take through Queensland is Brisbane to Cairns (or right up to Cape Tribulation) or in reverse! 

From South East Queensland, all the way through the best of Central Queensland and Far North Queensland. This is a trip that you need a decent chunk of time for. Don’t try and cram it all into a week. Take your time!

There are so many beautiful stops and outdoor adventures to have along the way and there really is no better way to travel Queensland. 

You can even extend your trip and drive Brisbane to Sydney if you have the time!

32. Sample The Food At Eat Street Northshore

eat street northshore food.

Foodies, this is for you! Eat Street Northshore is the place you go on an empty stomach because you will want a lot of room for all the delicious food.

This international food and drink market is on the site of an old shipping container dock and it has been converted into a foodie paradise. 

It runs Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights and there is often live entertainment or special themed events throughout the year. Plus you can catch the ferry from the city too! 

Make sure you save room for dessert! 

33. Slide Down The Rocks At Josephine Falls

josephine falls swimming hole.
Josephine Falls

Ever fancied sliding down a natural rock slide? That’s exactly what you can do at picturesque Josephine Falls. 

This beautiful waterfall and swimming hole is not too far from Cairns and is a popular destination for locals to cool off. But the rockslides are the biggest attraction here. 

The walk through the lush rainforest to the base of the waterfall is really beautiful too. 

34. 4WD At Cape York

Cape York is the most northern tip of Australia. Here you can explore remote beaches, ancient rainforests and untouched wilderness.  You’ll need a 4WD vehicle and the tracks are not for the faint-hearted. I get anxious just watching the videos!

But apparently, the experience is worth it and there are plenty of beautiful spots to stop off at along the way.

35. Sleep Overnight On The Reef Near Lady Musgrave Island

You can snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, scuba dive it, fly over it and boat across it, but did you know you can also ‘sleep on the reef’   

This unique overnight stay experience on the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park is sure to be a memorable item to tick off the bucket list. Go to sleep to the sound of the waves crashing against your luxury boat accommodation and wake up to the sunrise over the ocean. 

Early morning swim in the coral reefs? Sure, you can do that too! 

Find out more about the Reef Sleep experience here.

36. Take A Hike Up The Glass House Mountains

Take a hike up one of the 11 peaks of the Glasshouse Mountains and take in the magnificent views. From the top, you can see what feels like forever!

The most popular of the volcanic mountains to climb is Mount Tibrogargan and Mount Beerwah.

37. Watch A Sporting Match In Brisbane

Queensland is home to some fairly fanatical sports fans. We have quite a few different sports that are considered Queensland traditions but rugby and cricket probably top the list!

Depending on when you’re visiting, you could catch a game of NRL at Suncorp Stadium or AFL or Cricket at The Gabba in Brisbane. See the Gold Coast Titans or the North Queensland Cowboys at their home stadiums for NRL or even catch a soccer game. 

38. Enjoy A Scenic Flight To South Stradbroke Island

Seaplane Over Straddie.

One of the best ways to see the Gold Coast coastline is by seaplane and you can take scenic flights from Seaworld Resort to South Stradbroke Island for a relaxing day on the island.

This was something I surprised Simon with for a birthday one year and it was so much fun. The time on the island was really lovely too since most people only really visit North Stradbroke Island and skip its less populated sibling.

We got to feed wallabies, watch lizards running across the sand, swim and dine before taking a boat ride back to Southport. 

39. Buy Unique Gifts At Eumundi Markets

There are some impressive markets in Queensland, with handmade markets showcasing local artisans in many of the major cities and coastal towns, although one that really draws the crowds is the Eumundi Markets. 

It also happens to be the biggest artisan market in Australia! 

These markets in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland are open 8 am until 2 pm Wednesday and 7 am until 2 pm Sunday.

Not only can you find unique handmade gifts and original artwork, clothing and jewellery, but there is also an array of local musicians performing and delicious food to try. 

40. Kayak The Noosa Everglades

Noosa Everglades is a stunning area and perfect for kayaking. It is one of only 2 everglades in the world. The other is in Florida!

Here you can take in the incredible scenery while exploring meandering creeks, cypress forests, mangroves and secluded beaches.  

There are guided kayaking tours to guide your way around this beautiful maze of waterways.

41. Stargaze At Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium

Mt Coot-Tha Planetarium.

Want to go stargazing but don’t know the first thing about space? Head to the Planetarium instead!

The Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium has been operating since 1978 in the Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens (where we got engaged). 

The Planetarium is home to a 12.5-metre-diameter projection dome – the Cosmic Skydome. Enjoy one of the different shows, including a tour of Brisbane’s night sky, and wander the space museum area. 

42. Spend A Day At Beautiful Whitehaven Beach

best beaches in queensland - whitehaven.

Whitehaven Beach has been named the most beautiful beach in Queensland. In fact, it has been named one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

So how can you visit Whitehaven Beach? 

There are a few ways to get to Whitehaven.

Airlie Beach is one of the best starting points to visit the Whitsundays Islands and from here you can catch a private day tour by boat, seaplane or helicopter to visit the beautiful white sand beach. 

There are plenty of things to do in Airlie Beach for families for longer stays too.

43. Drive The Savannah Way Route

The Savannah Way Route is one of the most popular Australian road trip routes.  This iconic route takes you through some of the most remote areas of Australia, with its stunning landscapes and unique culture. 

Although this road trip doesn’t just take you around Queensland.

Starting in Cairns, it takes you right across the top of Australia, through Northern Territory and Western Australia, into Broome. A mammoth 3700km route!

You’ll experience everything from tropical rainforests, gorges, rivers and deserts. This one belongs on your Australian bucket list!

44. Stay Overnight At O’Reillys Rainforest Retreat

skywalk lamington national park.

O’Reillys Rainforest Retreat is the perfect place to stay in Lamington National Park.

Here you can enjoy the many walking tracks, including the rainforest canopy walk or take a guided night walk through the forest and explore its wildlife after dark, with nocturnal animals including sugar gliders and tawny frogmouths.

This popular hinterland retreat has been operating for close to 100 years, with views over the western McPherson Ranges. 

There is also a campground if you prefer something a little wilder!

45. Picnic At Wivenhoe Dam Recreation Area

Lake Wivenhoe.
Lake Wivenhoe – Logan’s Inlet

Wivenhoe Dam Recreation Area is the perfect place for a picnic. Here you can take in breathtaking views of the dam and enjoy the wide open spaces. There are playgrounds for the kids and plenty of room to kick the footy or throw a frisbee. 

This was a favourite picnic spot for my family when I was a child. We had the best times here! 

46. Hike Up Mount Coolum

Mount Coolum is a breathtaking mountain located in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland.  

The walk itself is only around 1.5 hours return and it takes up an elevation of 208 metres. 

Here you can take in spectacular views of the coastline from Double Point Island to Caloundra.  It’s definitely worth the effort and you’ll be rewarded with some of the best views in Queensland.

Coolum is also home to some of the most beautiful Sunny Coast beaches!

47. Take In The View At Picnic Point Toowoomba

Picnic Point Toowoomba.

Picnic Point in Toowoomba is appropriately named because it is a fantastic place to have a picnic. This scenic park and restaurant area has a viewing platform across Toowoomba.

This is a great spot for a family day out as there are two playgrounds – one at the top and another down the hill a little, which the kids love! 

And if you don’t want to bring your own picnic, the restaurant is great too. There are also walking trails to explore.

48. Have A Free Day Out At Queensland Museum

Brisbane Museum dinosaur skeleton.

The Queensland Museum is a must-visit for history buffs and culture enthusiasts. The museum’s collection includes over a million objects and specimens, ranging from dinosaur fossils to technology. 

Explore the state’s natural history, cultural heritage, and scientific achievements through interactive exhibits and immersive displays. 

They often have special exhibits on too, so check their website before you visit to see what’s on. These often have an admission price but are great for a rainy day in Brisbane!

49. Cruise The Brisbane River In A CityCat

Brisbane City Cat Ferry along river.

One of the best ways to experience Brisbane city is by cruising along the Brisbane River on a CityCat River Ferry! This is an easy way to get between some of the inner city suburbs while enjoying the scenery along the river banks. 

The Brisbane ferries travel between The University of Queensland (UQ) St Lucia to Northshore Hamilton.

There is also a free CityHopper service run by Brisbane City Council, stopping between 7 stops from North Quay and Sydney Street in New Farm. It runs between 5.30 am and midnight, from Sunday to Thursday.

The perfect way to see the sights and travel for free! 

50. Visit The Workshops Railway Museum 

Workshops museum Ipswich.

If you love trains and railway history, you will love the Workshops Railway Museum. 

This historic rail museum is one of the best things to do in Ipswich Queensland, our hometown,  and an easy day trip from Brisbane. The museum has plenty of interactive exhibits and loads of activities for the kids, making it perfect for a family day out.

Usually once a year they have a special event with Thomas The Tank Engine and friends coming to the museum with a replica Thomas kids can pose with and the Fat Controller hosting daily shows to entertain the kiddos. 

51. See the Mon Repos Turtles In Bundaberg

Every year, thousands of turtles come to the shores of Mon Repos beach in Bundaberg to lay their eggs.

Even better than that – you can witness this mesmerizing event for yourself! 

During turtle nesting season (November to March), visitors can join a ranger-guided tour and be lucky enough to get up close to these incredible creatures.

Then between January and March, you might get the exciting chance to see turtles hatching and scurrying towards the ocean. 

52. Dive With Manta Rays At Lady Elliot Island

Lady Elliot Island, the southernmost coral cay on the Great Barrier Reef, is a diver’s paradise. Day tours to the island are only by scenic flight, but what a special experience you’ll have!

Here you can explore deep and shallow reefs teeming with majestic manta rays – the world’s largest ray. They can have an impressive wing span of 7 metres! Crazy!

While you can see these incredible marine animals all year round, their numbers increase during the winter months. 

You will find many different unique wildlife experiences in this beautiful part of the reef.

53. Take A Scenic Flight Over The Whitsundays Heart Reef

There’s a pretty good chance you’ve seen the famous ‘heart reef’ in Queensland tourism promotions. But nothing quite compares to the real thing, right?

This amazing natural formation, located in the Great Barrier Reef, can only be fully appreciated from above.

Take a scenic flight over the Heart Reef and marvel at its beauty as you soar over the vibrant blue and green waters and pristine beaches. 

54. Head To The Annual Birdsville Races

The Birdsville Races is an iconic event in the Outback, on the edge of the Simpson Desert, and it’s easy to see why – it’s a vibrant celebration of culture with 2 days full of horse races, entertainment, spectacular campfires and plenty of bush hospitality. 

While the tiny town of Birdsville only has a popular of 110 people, on the first weekend of September each year, it becomes one of Australia’s most popular road trip destinations, with visitors from all around the country arriving in their vans, utes and trailers!

55. Go Stand Up Paddleboarding Along Tallebudgera Creek

Tallebudgera creek gold coast.

Tallebudgera Creek is one of the Gold Coast’s best-known waterways and it’s perfect for stand-up paddleboarding.

Whether you choose to explore the mangroves or venture out into the open waters, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of the surrounding landscape. 

This is also a great place to take the kids for a paddle with the shallow, calm waters making it perfect for families. 

56. Get Artsy At the Gallery Of Modern Art


The Queensland Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) is an absolute must-see for art lovers.

The museum houses a wide range of works from both Australian and international artists that span various mediums and styles, giving you the perfect opportunity to explore the creative side of things. 

There is also a children’s gallery that always has fun activities for the kids to enjoy while they explore their creativity. Our kids always love visiting.

57. Explore The Australian Dinosaur Trail At Winton

Winton, a small town in the Outback of Queensland, is home to one of Australia’s most important dinosaur sites. 

You can follow Australia’s Dinosaur Trail that links Winton, Hughenden and Richmond and where some of the world’s most important prehistoric fossils are still being found.

There’s even the opportunity to do your own digging for fossils, which is sure to make any Jurassic Park fan excited!

Don’t miss a visit to the Age of Dinosaurs Museum with interactive exhibits and exciting displays. 

58. Jetboat On The Gold Coast

jetboat extreme gold coast jet boat leaving surfers paradise.

See Surfers Paradise and the Gold Coast coastline from a new perspective, speeding around the water in a jet boat! The boats reach up to 80km an hour and take you as far as Wave Break Island and South Stradbroke Island.

Our eldest daughter went to a jetboat birthday party with Jet Boat Extreme. Talk about epic birthday fun.

59. Swim In Lake Mckenzie On Fraser Island

There are some breathtaking freshwater lakes on the world’s largest sand island – Fraser Island. And Lake Mckenzie is one of the most stunning. 

Lake McKenzie is one of the most visited attractions in the Great Sandy National Park. 

It’s actually a ‘perched’ lake, which means it contains only rainwater and no groundwater. It is not fed by streams and does not flow to the ocean.

The sand and organic matter at the base of the lake form an impervious layer, preventing rainwater from draining away.

60. Camp Where The Rainforest Meets The Ocean In Cape Tribulation

cape tribulation.
Cape Tribulation

Cape Tribulation is where the Great Barrier Reef meets the Daintree Rainforest, making it a unique and beautiful destination to spend a day or more. Take a guided tour of the area or explore on your own to discover its stunning landscapes.

This is also a gorgeous place to camp if you are in a van or doing a camping road trip. 

61. Watch The Sunrise Over Burleigh Heads National Park

Burleigh Heads National Park is an iconic spot just south of Surfers Paradise – and it’s the perfect place to watch the sunrise.

Here you can take a leisurely stroll along the golden beach, enjoy spectacular views from Burleigh Hill and explore lush coastal rainforest trails.

But there is no denying that watching the sunrise or sunset is the best time of day to be here! 

62. Walk The Coastal Track Between Mooloolaba And Alexandra Headland

Holly at Mooloolaba beach.

Head to the north coast instead for one of the most beautiful walking tracks on the Sunshine Coast. Walk between Mooloolah River and Alexandra Headland.

The full walk is 3.7km one way and there are lots of places to stop, including plenty of playgrounds to keep the kids happy. We haven’t done the full walk, but it’s a reasonable walk for all fitness levels and the views are incredible! 

63. Mine For Thundereggs At Thunderbird Park

Thunderbird Park is the perfect place to explore and try your hand at fossicking. 

Here you can search for thundereggs – a type of rock with an interesting crystal interior. You don’t know what you’ve got until they cut them open for you! 

Thunderbird Park is located at the bottom of Mount Tamborine in the Gold Coast Hinterland and there are loads of other fun things to do here as well, including accommodation. It’s a fantastic place to stay with the family. 

64. Admire the View From Mt Coot-Tha Summit

Mt Coot-tha Lookout.
Terrible old photo! But it’s a great view.

When I was a kid and we had relatives visit us in Queensland from Victoria, my parents always took them to Mt Coot-tha. For the best views in Brisbane… 

And the view is spectacular! Especially at night when the city lights come alive but even on a clear day, it’s incredible how far you can see.

We haven’t done it for a while, but it also used to be a place we went often as a couple for lunch at the Summit Cafe. 

65. Hike Through Carnarvon Gorge

Carnarvon Gorge, located in central Queensland, is a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers alike. Here you can explore lush rainforest trails and admire stunning sandstone formations. 

You will also find more than 2,000 examples of Aboriginal rock art.

The big trail – known as The Big Day Out, is 19.4km return from the visitor area and takes around 8 hours to complete.

66. Picnic At Roma Street Parklands

roma street parklands.

The Roma Street Parklands is by far one of the best public parklands in Queensland. There are some seriously cool playgrounds, beautiful gardens and paths for the kids to ride their scooters.

67. Shop At Pacific Fair Shopping Centre

Pacific Fair Shopping Centre in Broadbeach on the Gold Coast was once the biggest shopping centre in Australia. While it hasn’t held that title for a few years, now sitting around position 5 on the list, it’s still a fun place for a shopping spree.

You will find fashion, accessories, homewares, jewellery, and plenty of places to eat too.

There’s a free shutting bus to take you to and from Main Beach in Surfers Paradise. Woohoo… free is always great! 

68. Create A Custom Rum Flavour At Bundaberg Rum Distillery

bundaberg distillery giant bottle of rum.

For a truly unique experience, head to the Bundaberg Rum Distillery. Here you can create your own custom rum flavour and blend it with the signature Bundaberg mixology. Then, take home your very own bottle and impress your friends with a one-of-a-kind spirit! 

There are also distillery tours and tastings, of course! A must for visiting Bundaberg.

69. Stroll Through Springbrook National Park 

Natural bridge springbrook national park day trip from brisbane.

Springbrook National Park, located on the Gold Coast hinterland, is a stunning area of rainforest and waterfalls.

Our two favourite attractions are the Natural Arch (or the Natural Bridge as they called it when I was a kid) and Purling Brook Falls. 

There are many different walking trails in the national park to fill in a full day of exploring this beautiful rainforest.

70. See The Glow Worms At Mount Tamborine

glow worm experience on mt tamborine.

There is a manmade glow worm cave in Mount Tamborine and the experience is really cool! 

You get to walk through the tunnel and see these fascinating creatures illuminated in the dark. The best part is that you don’t need to wait until nighttime to see the glow worms light up as the cave environment is designed to eliminate light pollution. 

It’s located at Cedar Creek Estate Vinyard and Winery so it’s a good excuse to do a wine tasting while you’re here!

71. Enjoy Spectacular Views From SkyPoint Observation Deck

The SkyPoint observation deck at Australia’s tallest building, Q1, in Surfers Paradise offers some spectacular views of the coastline and surrounding area. 

The SkyPoint Observation Deck is 230 metres above sea level, so we hope you don’t mind heights!

If you’re up for a challenge, you can do Australia’s highest external climb. It starts on level 77 and takes you up the eagle’s nest to a height of 270 metres above sea level. Eek! 

That’s definitely one for your QLD bucket list! 

72. Abseil the Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Kangaroo Point Cliffs is a unique spot that offers panoramic views of the Brisbane River and the city skyline. 

It’s also the perfect place to try abseiling – with professional climbers there to help you out.  If you’re feeling extra adventurous, there are night descents available too!

But even if you’re not a fan of climbing and heights, the Kangaroo Point Park and River Walk are a beautiful way to spend a leisurely afternoon in Brisbane city. 

73. Cool Off At A Gold Coast Water Park

Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast Water Park Australia.

Queensland and water parks go together like sunscreen and summer! You will want to bring that sunscreen with you.

There are two big water parks on the Gold Coast – WetNWild and White Water World. Both are a lot of fun. Wet N Wild has been around longer so it does have more attractions, but you can easily fill a day at either. White Water World does shut down over the cooler months though. 

White Water World is next to Dreamworld while Wet N Wild is right near Movieworld and Paradise Country, so you could easily do half day at two places if you have a multi-park pass! 

74. Be Amazed At Infinity Attraction

The Infinity Attraction in Surfers Paradise is the ultimate immersive experience, with a mix of holograms, special effects and cool illusions.  

Here you’ll get to explore other ‘worlds’, enjoy interactive challenges and be transported into an amazing world of fantasy. 

It is recommended for older kids as little ones might find the darker areas and sounds a bit scary.

75. Tour the Capricorn Caves

The Capricorn Caves are located near Rockhampton with underground limestone caves and spectacular formations. You can join a guided Adventure Tour through the caves and see the epic views from the Summit. 

They have 3 different cave tours to suit different age groups. The Cathedral Cave tour is for all ages. 

What’s really cool about this Queensland attraction is that is a family-owned attraction and they have opened up their property to visitors near and far. 

or self-guided tours of the area, as well as enjoy photography, mountain biking and other outdoor activities. 

RECOMMENDED READING: Plan the ultimate trip to Australia with our Australia Travel Guide!

Best Time To Visit Queensland

Queensland is a year-round destination, but the best times to visit are from April to September when things start cooling off and the temperatures become more comfortable. This is definitely the better time to visit North Queensland too, outside of their wet season.

Queensland gets around 261 days of sunshine a year, hence why we call it the ‘Sunshine State’!

Quick Facts About Queensland

Did you know that Queensland is the second-largest state in Australia, and one of the most biodiverse places in the world? Here are a few more cool Queensland facts you probably didn’t know:

What is the tallest mountain in Queensland?

The tallest mountain in Queensland is Mount Bartle Frere, rising 1622 metres above sea level. It is located in Wooroonooran National Park in the Wet Tropics.

How Big Is Queensland?

Queensland has an area of 1,852,642 square kilometres. It is larger than all but 15 countries in the world. It is almost 5 times the size of Japan.

How many national parks are in Queensland?

There are more than 200 national parks in Queensland.

How many UNESCO World Heritage Sites are in Queensland?

There are 5 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Queensland. They include the Great Barrier Reef, K’gari (Fraser Island), Gondwana Rainforests, Australian Fossil Mammal Site in Riversleigh and the Queensland Wet Tropics.

What is the tallest building in Queensland?

The tallest building in Queensland is the Q1 Building in Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast, at 322 metres tall.

There is no denying there are some incredible things to do in Queensland! This list of attractions is sure to help you create the ultimate Queensland bucket list and will hopefully have you planning your visit soon! 

Which of these things to do in QLD would you most love to do?