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Discover paradise in North Queensland

From the Great Barrier Reef to the Daintree Rainforest, natural wonders are galore and its the perfect region to simply pack a swimsuit and your camera. Visit a region of an unforgettable variety of natural beauty and you'll never want to leave.

  1. To have a picnic on the private sand cay: Vlasoff Cay 

    Among the islands and coral cays, nestled among the picturesque coral-studded sea of the Great Barrier Reef and beyond Cairns lies Vlasoff Cay. It is all secluded pure white sand and crystalline waters, perfect for a picnic and a camera.

  2. Vlasoff Cay by Liz Carlson  
  3. To pitch a tent under a ceiling of stars: Mission Beach 

    Beyond the sugarcane and banana farms between Townsville and Cairns is Mission Beach, four seaside villages linked by 14 kilometres of wide golden sands. Pitch a tent and stargaze under the north Queensland sky and when you wake, take your pick of water sports to capture some incredible images because nothing says #paradise like palm trees and beach front camping.

    Castaways Mission beach

  4. To SUP down a river with a history that dates back 40,000 years: Mossman Gorge 

    Stand-up paddle boarding (SUP) through a corridor of the World Heritage-listed Daintree rainforest is an extraordinary journey through natural history. Navigating the beautiful Mossman Gorge just near of Port Douglas provides the opportunity to capture one of its tens of thousands of species of plants and animals. 

  5. Mossman River image by Liz Carlson

  6. Photograph the seriously photogenic Nudey Beach, which isn’t actually nudie at all: Fitzroy Island

    On the southwest side of Fitzroy Island, is a beach with walkable coral and partial sand spots blanketing a beach where clothing is optional. After embarking the ferry from Cairns, perhaps people get a little too warm after the 1.8-kilometre walk through dense rainforest to reach this gorgeous beach.

  7. Girl snorkelling in Fitzroy Island
  8. To dive into the World Heritage-listed aquatic wonderland: Great Barrier Reef 

    This stunning 2,300 kilometre ecosystem comprises thousands of reefs and hundreds of islands comprising over 600 types of coral. You'll dive into a magical underwater kingdom of colourful fish, turtles, dolphins and sharks and breathe in the beauty of one of the world's great natural wonders. Heaven on earth.

    Great Barrier Reef aerial shot by Liz Carlson

  9. Rainforests here are Jurassic, like the Curtain Tree Fig: Atherton Tablelands 

    It is claimed to be one of the most amazing trees alive and tells more than a century of stories. The Curtain Tree Fig is a strangler – one tree was leaning against another on a 45-degree angle and the strangler vine grew along the oblique angle of the leaning tree. Thank you Mother Nature.

  10. Curtain Tree Fig by Liz Carlson

  11. The sun always rises over the coral sea: Palm Cove 

    This seaside village just south of Port Douglas where paperbark trees stand sentry is a tropical paradise and a gateway to the reef, rainforest and wildlife, proving to be a perfect place for any photographer to watch the sun rise and more.

  12. Alamanda Palm Cove

  13. The best seat in the house is flying over two world heritage listed sites by microlight: the Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef

    Witness turquoise waters and emerald rainforests as you soar over some of Mother Nature's greatest work by microlight and capture the most magnificent aerial scenery in the coolest way possible.

  14. Image of Green Island by Liz Carlson

  15. There’s no shortage of rainforest rock pools to take a dip in: Fairy Falls 

    Water cascades down the mountainside at Crystal Cascades and a private little area called Fairy Falls is the one to discover because reflecting on the beauty and staving of the humidity in a refreshing rock pool amidst the rainforest in pure bliss.

  16. Fairy Falls Cairns

Image Credit: Liz Carlson and Matt Glastonbury