26 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

26 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Great Barrier Reef itinerary planner

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Route & dates

26 days in Great Barrier Reef Itinerary

Start: Baku
Fly:  28​h
1
Cairns
— 4 nights
bus:  1​h 15​min
2
Port Douglas
— 4 nights
shuttle + Fly:  4​h 15​min
3
Townsville
— 2 nights
train:  4​h 15​min
4
Whitsunday Island
— 1 night
bus:  45​min
5
Airlie Beach
— 3 nights
ferry:  1​h
6
Hamilton Island
— 3 nights
+3
Fly + Drive + ferry + Drive:  9​h
7
Fraser Island
— 4 nights
+3
Drive + ferry + Drive + Fly:  32​h
End: Baku

4
nights
Cairns

A neat, cosmopolitan city of shaded plazas and laid-back neighborhoods, Cairns serves as a popular base for exploration of the surrounding region and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as a center for watersport activities like surfing or waterskiing.
Step out of the city life by going to Scuba & Snorkeling and Palm Cove Beach. Step out of Cairns to go to Palm Cove and see Spas, which is approximately 30 minutes away. Spend the 27th (Mon) wandering through the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. There's lots more to do: trek along Esplanade Boardwalk, take in the architecture and atmosphere at St Monica's Cathedral, enjoy some diversion at Esplanade Lagoon Pool, and soar above the sights with a balloon tour.

To find more things to do, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Cairns trip builder app .

Baku, Azerbaijan to Cairns is an approximately 28-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Baku to Cairns is 6 hours. Expect a bit warmer temperatures when traveling from Baku in May; daily highs in Cairns reach 32°C and lows reach 24°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Wed) early enough to catcht the bus to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trip

Palm Cove
Find places to stay May 25 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Esplanade Boardwalk ©
Esplanade Boardwalk
Nature & Wildlife Tours

4
nights
Port Douglas

A holiday in Port Douglas balances an activity-filled getaway with plenty of opportunities to relax, thanks to its proximity to the Great Barrier Reef and bustling beach life.
Escape the urban bustle at Safaris and Scuba & Snorkeling. There's lots more to do: identify plant and animal life at Hartley's Crocodile Adventures, see the vivid underwater world at Opal Reef, stop by With Sugar, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Port Douglas road trip tool .

Traveling by bus from Cairns to Port Douglas takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle. Expect a daytime high around 32°C in May, and nighttime lows around 24°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Sun) early enough to travel to Townsville.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Wildlife Outdoors Tours

Side Trip

Hartley's Crocodile Adventures
Find places to stay May 29 — Jun 2:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Safaris
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures ©
Hartley's Crocodile Adventures

2
nights
Townsville

Tucked snugly beneath a steep, craggy mount--known as Castle Hill--the vibrant city of Townsville is as picturesque as its backdrop.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Mon): identify plant and animal life at Wildlife Areas. On the 4th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: head off the coast to Museum of Tropical Queensland, kick back and relax at The Strand, and then go for a walk through Castle Hill.

To see ratings, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, go to the Townsville day trip tool .

Traveling by combination of shuttle and flight from Port Douglas to Townsville takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of shuttle and bus. Expect slightly colder evenings in Townsville when traveling from Port Douglas in June, with lows around 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Tue) to allow time to take a train to Whitsunday Island.

Things to do in Townsville

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Jun 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
The Strand ©
The Strand
Castle Hill
Castle Hill

1
night
Whitsunday Island

Whitsunday Island ©
Start off your visit on the 5th (Wed): explore the activities along Hill Inlet and then kick back and relax at Whitehaven Beach.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Whitsunday Island online day trip planner .

Traveling by train from Townsville to Whitsunday Island takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or fly. In June, daytime highs in Whitsunday Island are 28°C, while nighttime lows are 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to take a bus to Airlie Beach.

Things to do in Whitsunday Island

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Jun 4 — 5:
Highlights from your plan
Hill Inlet ©
Hill Inlet
Whitehaven Beach ©
Whitehaven Beach

3
nights
Airlie Beach

Very much a town with an emphasis on the tropical lifestyle, Airlie Beach offers exotic surroundings with palm trees and charming, sandy beaches.
Get outdoors at Scuba & Snorkeling and Waterskiing & Jetskiing. On the 8th (Sat), spend a thrilling day on the water with a speed boat tour. There's more to do: kick back and relax at Airlie Beach Lagoon and take in the pleasant sights at Bicentennial Walkway.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, you can read our Airlie Beach road trip planning website .

You can take a bus from Whitsunday Island to Airlie Beach in an hour. Alternatively, you can ride a ferry. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Whitsunday Island in June since evenings lows in Airlie Beach dip to 21°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Sat) early enough to catch the ferry to Hamilton Island.

Things to do in Airlie Beach

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Jun 5 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Waterskiing & Jetskiing
Scuba & Snorkeling
Speed Boats Tours

3
nights
Hamilton Island

A trip to Hamilton Island takes you to a car-free destination mostly covered in bushland.
Step out of the city life by going to Scuba & Snorkeling and Wild life Hamilton Island. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Catseye Beach, take in the waterfront activity at Hamilton Island Marina, head outdoors with Jetryder, and play a few rounds at Hamilton Island Golf Club.

To see other places to visit, reviews, maps, and tourist information, use the Hamilton Island trip planner .

You can ride a ferry from Airlie Beach to Hamilton Island in an hour. In June, daily temperatures in Hamilton Island can reach 26°C, while at night they dip to 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Fraser Island.

Things to do in Hamilton Island

Outdoors Parks Tours
Find places to stay Jun 8 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Catseye Beach ©
Catseye Beach
Hamilton Island Golf Club ©
Hamilton Island Golf Club

4
nights
Fraser Island

Fraser Island ©
Get outdoors at Lake McKenzie and Eli Creek.

Plan my trip to Fraser Island with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

Traveling by combination of flight, ferry, and car from Hamilton Island to Fraser Island takes 9 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry, bus, and car. Traveling from Hamilton Island in June, expect little chillier with lows of 14°C in Fraser Island. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 16th (Sun) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Fraser Island

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Jun 11 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Lake McKenzie ©
Lake McKenzie
Seventy-Five Mile Beach ©
Seventy-Five Mile Beach
Central Station Rainforest ©
Central Station Rainforest

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