With summer fast approaching it's time to dust off the swimming cosy, unfurl the beach umbrella and set the summer beach plans in motion. There’s no doubt it’s shaping up to be a hot summer. But with so many gorgeous beaches to choose from on Queensland’s 7,400 kilometre coastline, how do you go about finding the best one?
That’s where you, our readers come in. We wanted to hear about your favourite Queensland beach or hidden stretch of sand, where the warm waters and cool ocean breezes put you in that joyful summer frame of mind.
So we set up a poll on our Flight Centre Facebook page asking the question: 'What's your favourite beach destination in Queensland?' After sifting through the responses, we soon discovered that tropical north Queensland was a clear favourite.
From the responses we received, the top three beaches in Queensland were revealed. And the survey says...
3 - Mission Beach, North Queensland
This tropical north Queensland crowd pleaser came in at number three in our voter responses. Nestled into the shores of the Coral Sea, Mission Beach is a family favourite with calm waters and a pleasant off-shore reef that is exposed during low-tide.
Dunk Island is just a short four kilometre ferry or water-taxi ride from the shore, where tourists and locals shuttle back and forth for day trips or extended stays.
Surrounded by the Great Barrier Reef on one side and tropical rainforest on the other, it's no wonder this thriving village and beautiful beach location made it onto our list.
2 - Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Island
Aqua waters, pristine silica sands, tropical island views; it's easy to see why Whitehaven Beach is the most photographed beach in Australia. Even Oprah Winfrey claims it as one of her favourite locations.
With a picturesque seven kilometre shore line, Whitsunday Island is the largest of the 74 islands that make up the Whitsundays. Sail your way to shore or fly in by helicopter or seaplane for a truly unique experience. Take a picnic, enjoy the beautiful surroundings and simply relax.
1 - Palm Cove, North Queensland
We asked for your favourite and here it is! Named for the swaying palm trees that line its shore, this impressive beach just north of Cairns is popular among locals and tourists alike.
The pristine beach is a favourite for joggers and cyclists and has a year round patrolled area that is netted for maximum safety when swimming. Many big name resorts line the charming ocean front parade, providing guests with stunning views and top notch accommodation.
Some other worthy mentions...
Broadbeach - Gold Coast
The Gold Coast boasts many beaches, including the famed Surfers Paradise beach and Snapper Rocks. We spoke with surfer and Gold Coast local Josh Hardcastle as to why he thinks Broadbeach is his favourite on the Gold Coast.
"We spent many family days here when growing up," said Josh. "It's a relaxed beach where you can swim year round, it’s always patrolled and there are many nearby restaurants and cafes just a short stroll away. It’s also a great place for dinner at night and not far to the casino!"
Read more in our Foodies Guide to the Gold Coast.
Noosa Main Beach - Sunshine Coast
With its relaxed atmosphere, board walk and calm waters, Noosa is worth a visit any time of year. One of the few beaches that face north, this popular spot is located near the stylish heart of town and nestled against the green hinterland areas.
With so much to offer, this beach makes for a perfect family holiday or romantic getaway. Walk the scenic headlands of Noosa National Park and don't forget to look up as koala sightings are common.
Point Lookout - Stradbroke Island
One hour from Brisbane by ferry will see you on beautiful North Stradbroke Island. Point Lookout is a popular surfing location with year round swells. Nearby, the calmer waters of Cylinder are popular for families. Climb the headlands to view wildlife from both land and sea.
Whale watching is a popular activity during their migration north for the winter. Dolphins, manta-rays, turtles and dugong are also plentiful. Stroll along the sand dunes and you’ll most likely see koalas, wallabies, birds and large monitor lizards.
If your favourite beach wasn't mentioned, let us know your pick and what makes it special to you.