Fitzroy Island, where the rainforest meets the sea off the far North Queensland coast, is the quintessential Australian escape from the day-to-day bustle of the city.

Fitzroy is part of a stretch of islands adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef, with bush trails, beach walks and hideaways that stretch the length of the beach. With only one resort on the island, Fitzroy quickly feels like a cozy home away from home, only with a lot more to do, such as water sports, snorkelling, National Park walks and diving just to name a few.

For the ‘water baby’ at heart, regular boat tours departing Cairns will take you across the crisp blue waters to the outer Reefs. For almost a full day, you’ll soak up the sun under the wide blue open skies and the care of the crew.

The boats are spacious and offer a variety of activities, from taking pre-booked helicopter rides, splashing down the waterslides into the ocean, or simply popping on flippers and a snorkel and jumping overboard.

The Island is also an extremely child friendly summer destination. The accessible stretch of beach on the island’s frontage is like a broad rimmed bay with gentle welcoming waters. It’s an idyllic spot for hiring a kayak or paddle board and skimming across the soft ripples along the coastline. All water sport equipment can be hired by the hour at one of two hire outlets on the island and both offer guided tours for snorkeling, kayaks, paddle boards and glass bottom boat tours.

To walk from the forest, with its canopy of broad leaves and dry bracts underfoot, across the sand where you can dip your toes in the cool waves, is an experience native to Queensland. On Fitzroy, the rainforest that climbs the hillside is just moments away from the beach. The nature trails allow you access to the beautiful hinterland and from the resort you can explore the high reaches of Fitzroy summit and the Lighthouse on a self paced hike. The Secret Garden walk and walk to Nudey Beach are a little more child-friendly, in their gentle climb and forest wildlife.

The fringing reefs surrounding Fitzroy Island make up the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef which give tourists a glimpse of one of the world’s most stunning stretch of corals. Beneath the water, the underwater world greets you with an abundance of sea life including clown fish, gropers, cods and many sea turtles.

Fitzroy Island is also home to a Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Centre, which you can visit whilst on the island.

For the more adventurous, the Fitzroy Island Dive Centre hires out equipment as well as offers structured lessons or guided dives after dark.

Fitzroy Island has just two eateries including a fine dining restaurant and open outdoor cafe with a beach-side bar. With the quiet lapping of the waves, the trill and warble of the native birds, Fitzroy Island offers the most peaceful escape wherever you choose to stay.

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