Best swimming locations to cool off this Summer
10 September 2023
Summer is here, and it's the best time of year to explore some of the top swimming spots in Townsville North Queensland! Here are the top 10 picks of the best swimming locations to cool off this summer.
1. Big Crystal Creek & Little Crystal Creek, Paluma Range National Park
Located between Townsville and Ingham, Paluma Range National Park is the oldest continually living rainforest in the world. Little Crystal Creek is well known for its historic stone arch bridge built in the 1930s and the cascading waterfalls which feed into one of the best freshwater swimming holes in the North. Take a dip into the crystal-clear waters, perfect for a refreshing swim nestled in nature.
If you want to explore a little further, Big Crystal Creek is located a short drive from Little Crystal Creek. Big Crystal Creek features a large swimming hole, a large picnic area, a natural slip ‘n’ slide, camping spots (permits required) and wild nature to explore at your leisure.
Little Crystal Creek, Paluma Range National Park
2. Forrest Beach, Ingham
Escape the hustle and bustle and spend some time relaxing on Forrest Beach. Enjoy the long sandy beach front which overlooks Orpheus Island and the Palm Island Group or take a swim in the patrolled beach which also features stinger net protection during the summer months.
3. The Great Barrier Reef
The ultimate swimming spot, and the world’s greatest natural asset! With coral gardens rich in marine life, this underwater wonder is an easy boat trip from Townsville. Featuring some of the most pristine reefs waiting to be explored by snorkelers and divers of all experience levels. Townsville and Magnetic Island is also the launchpad to the world’s first underwater museum – the Coral Greenhouse! Explore internationally renowned art, then explore further through underwater canyons, gullies, coral bommies, and immense coral gardens . The reef has many shallow areas, well suited to snorkelling and introductory diving.
4. Rockpool, The Strand
Enjoy a stinger resistant seawater pool at The Strand Rockpool. Located on the northern end of The Strand (Townsville), the rockpool has easy access to a wide range of facilities. The Strand Rockpool is the perfect place to enjoy a picnic or BBQ and cool off! The pool is gently sloped with a shallow area suitable for wheelchair access and children, which leads into a deeper pool for swimming.
5. The Strand Beach
The Strand is Townsville’s most popular main beach and foreshore. The beach is 2.7km long and faces north-east toward Magnetic Island. Close by to ice cream, playgrounds, cafes and restaurants, The Strand Beach is the place to be when enjoying the sunshine this summer.
6. Riverway Lagoons, Townsville
Located in the Riverway Precinct in Pioneer Park, The Riverway Lagoons cover an area in size of more than three Olympic swimming pools. The lagoons are suitable for all ages and is protected for year-round safe swimming, with a stunning outlook over the Ross River.
7. Zoe Falls, Hinchinbrook Island
Home to one of Queensland’s most instagrammable swimming locations, Zoe falls is a short 900m walk from Zoe Bay. Walking through the rainforest, you’ll be led to the sparkling freshwater pool at the base of Zoe falls. Sit back (or swim), relax and enjoy the serenity that this place has to offer. If you’re feeling adventurous, trek to the summit, and enjoy nature’s own infinity pool!
8. 23 Bays and Beaches, Magnetic Island
Magnetic Island offers many amazing swimming spots. If you are looking for an extra quiet getaway, Arthur Bay is the perfect location. It is surrounded by granite boulders and hoop pines, as well as featuring some of the most beautiful coral close to shore – be sure to pack your snorkel gear.
Horseshoe Bay is an awesome area to have some fun with the family. It’s a popular spot for water sports, swimming, and family activities. Once you go there, you won’t want to leave!
Picnic Bay is host to some of the most picturesque beaches, as well as the tranquil setting and the iconic jetty. Snorkel and explore the abundant marine life of Picnic Bay or see what you can spot from above while taking a stroll along the jetty.
9. Alva Beach, Burdekin
Alva is a relaxed Burdekin location, only a 15-minute drive from Ayr. Alva Beach is the perfect private beach area to escape life and just enjoy the sand between your toes. Throw in a line to try your luck or just enjoy splashing in the water and building sandcastles. At low tide Alva Beach makes for excellent exploring being one of Australia’s longest sand spits. It’s also a launching point for a dive tour to the world-famous dive wreck on the Great Barrier Reef, the ‘SS Yongala’ – Australia’s largest, most intact historic shipwreck.
10. Jourama Falls Swimming Hole, Paluma Range National Park
Jourama Falls is about an hour north of Townsville, being a few kilometres off the highway. The access road takes you to a peaceful swimming hole and picnic ground. Fringed by rainforest, Waterview Creek tumbles down many picturesque cascades and rapids, offering beautiful spots to relax, camp, walk and observe the surrounding native wildlife. Jourama Falls is a great swimming location with plenty of swimming spots to choose from. There are plenty of crystal-clear rock pools to soak in and a series of falls to wash over you. From the top of Jourama, make your way up Waterview Creek to the Black Hole. Jourama Falls is a truly magical place to explore.