How to have an 'event-ful' stay in Townsville
04 June 2023
Townsville North Queensland is the Events Capital of the North, with world-class stadium sporting events, month-long cultural festivals, active participation competitions and so much more!
Visiting the region for an event-ful holiday is a must-do, especially as the year ramps up with a jam-packed events calendar - matched only by the superb weather that comes with a North Queensland winter. Here's our ultimate event-ful stay in Townsville North Queensland (with options to stay longer) As we always say - Come for the event, stay for unexpected!
You've arrived - welcome! If you're coming in on the day of the event, we suggest soaking up the city atmosphere as the town sets to buzz - enjoy an afternoon of food and entertainment before gates open; with a selection of food vans, live music and kids’ entertainment. The earlier the better!
- Enjoy a walk (or e-scooter) along our city's heart - the bustling Strand foreshore. Here you will find an array of cafes, restaurants, and of course uninterrupted views to the iconic Magnetic Island. This is the place to pre-fuel before the main event.
- Take a moment of calm in the botanic beauty of Queens Gardens. With the best street view of the pink granite monolith - Castle Hill - this hidden oasis covers over 4 hectares of tropical colonial gardens, making it the oldest botanic gardens in Townsville (dating back to 1870).
- Retrace the footsteps of our cultural and historical past at Jezzine Barracks - featuring Kissing Point, and remaining military fortifications, and the Garabarra ethno-botanical walk which tells a 60,000 year old story of the traditional custodians - the Wulgurukaba and Bindal peoples.
STAY ON to Explore
Bright eyed and bushy tailed for the 7.45am passenger ferry to Magnetic Island where you can spend the day adventuring by bus, car, boat or foot! With a variety of eating options, walking tracks, beaches and tours available, it’s best to allocate at least half of your day to spend on the island.
Start the day off right with a bite to eat along Horseshoe Bay foreshore and enjoy a nutritious breakfast and juice along the esplanade looking out to the ocean. Horseshoe Bay is home to several great water sport activities such as paddle boarding and kayaking... so bring your swimmers!
If you love hiking and history, then hit up the Forts Walk - a great way to see the north-eastern coast of the Island from the top of the lookout, whilst spotting koalas on your way up! Home to Northern Australia's largest colony of wild koalas and prefer the view from the Forts, here is where you can immerse in military history with remains from the Battle of the Coral Sea. And really - you don’t want to miss out on the epic 360-degree views!
Cool off after your walk and head straight down to Arcadia where you have the option of a refreshing swim in Alma Bay, or a self-guided snorkel in Geoffrey or Nelly Bay! With a designated self-guided snorkel trail, adventure through stunning reef and marine life surrounding the Moltke wreck. Stinger suits and snorkelling equipment can be hired at a number of outlets on the island (stinger season November - May).
Hungry? The Arcadia Hotel and Bistro provides a great pub meal with views of the beach, or around the corner visit the new Baked on Maggie Bar and Grill for a lovely meal in their newly established beer garden. Scallywags back over in Nelly Bay can whip up a hearrrty pirate burger before you jump on the ferry!
The public bus meets every ferry, so if you haven’t been able to hire a car, you can purchase an all-day bus pass to make your own way around the island.
Once you have made your way back to the mainland, explore some of the urban culture with the self-guided Street Art Trail - even better by e-scooter! The trail will take you along some of the Melbourne-esk side streets, and marvel at the city lights as dusk approaches.
Townsville is full of great dinner options for foodies of every taste! All within walking distance, choose between City Lane, the Townsville Brewery (famous for its in-house Townsville Bitter brew) and Palmer Street. City Lane's dining and bar precinct offers a range of different cuisines. Palmer Street, similarly, has everything from burgers, pubs to fine dining. If you're feeling extra adventurous, Flinders Street is known for its night life and is home to some top-notch bars and clubs such as 237 Bar, Hooch and Fellow and the Heritage Exchange. If you're feeling a little fancy - be sure to book ahead and delight in one of three Chef-hatted restaurants - A Touch of Salt, Bridgewater or JAM.
There's more to Townsville North Queensland than meets the eye. In addition to our crowd favourites, this region is home to a trove of hidden treasures, serendipitous surprises, and a collection of stories just waiting to be told. Our diversity is our distinction - from the majestic Great Barrier Reef to the wonders of the World Heritage Wet Tropics rainforest.
Dusty outback drives and tropical island experiences - we’re proud of it, we preserve it.
Seek out new experiences, new stories - 6 UNEXPECTED EXPERIENCES
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