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Mackay (Australia)

Practical information on Mackay

  • Beach / Seaside Resort
  • Nature Reserve / Wildlife Observation / Safari
  • Hiking / Trekking
  • Port
  • Countryside
  • River
3 / 5 - One review
How to get there
1 hour 45 minutes from Airlie Beach by car
When to go
From May to September
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Mackay

Alicia Munoz Seasoned Traveller
87 written opinions

Mackay is a town situated on the eastern coast of Queensland in Australia. Level with the Whitsundays, it's located around 900 kilometres north of Brisbane.

My suggestion:
For a transfer towards the Whitsunday archipelago, I would recommend Airlie Beach instead with its young and festive atmosphere. But Mackay may be a fallback solution if you prefer nature to tourist spots.
My review

Surprisingly, this town surprised me in a good way, even if it isn't an unmissable stop. However, due to its reputation, it was off to a bad start. We often hear of Mackay on account of its strong industrial and mining activity, quite devastating for the Grand Barrier Reef. The town is nicknamed "the sugar capital of Australia" as it produces a third of the country's sugar.

The town is very art déco, which makes it nicer than the majority of towns in Queensland. Amongst the building to see, I would nominate the Town Hall and The Historical Bank, typical colonial architecture. And for a pleasant walk, go to the Marina (a lovely lighthouse to photograph) or to the botanical garden.

The little "tip" to know: The green Eungella National Park, one hour west of Mackay, is the ideal place to see the extremely rare duck-billed platypuses. On our part, we didn't have the patience to wait but if you stay for a few hours, scrutinising the river, you will see them, according to the park staff.

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