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Guided tours

A guided tour or outdoor activity through Queensland's parks and forests is a great way to experience and enjoy our natural areas and wildlife.

Tours and activities are conducted by rangers from Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service and authorised tour operators. Bookings are essential for some tours and activities, others may require on-site registration.

View our selected list or find more activities in and around national parks.

On this page:

Mon Repos (nesting marine turtles)

Turtle laying eggs.

Visitors can participate in Turtle Encounters at Mon Repos.

Visit Mon Repos to see the largest group of nesting marine turtles in eastern Australia.

  • Book a ranger-led turtle tour to watch nesting and hatching turtles on the beach (November to March). 
  • Discover walking and cycling tracks, the site of Bert Hinkler's first glider flights, a tidal lagoon, rock pools and an historic basalt stone wall.

Located near Bundaberg, North Queensland.

Chillagoe-Mungana Caves (limestone caves)

Cave decorations in Donna Cave.

Spectacular limestone caves are decorated by stalactites, stalagmites and flowstones.

Visit Chillagoe-Mungana Caves National Park to:

  • See spectacular limestone caves—caverns and passages are decorated by stalactites, stalagmites and flowstones.
  • View small galleries of Aboriginal rock art in the National park.
  • Watch wildlife such as birds, wallabies and bats.
  • Explore the historic Chillagoe Smelters relic site from the 1890’s.
  • Book a ranger-guided cave tour or explore some caves on your own.

Located approximately 3 hours drive, west of Cairns in North Queensland.

Mount Etna Caves National Park (bat viewing)

Ghost bats on cave wall.

Mount Etna is one of the few places in Australia supporting a colony of vulnerable ghost bats.

Visit Mount Etna Caves National Park to:

  • Discover Bat Cleft cave—one of only seven recorded little bent-winged bat maternity sites in Australia.
  • Join a ranger-guided evening tour to Bat Cleft cave (December to mid-February)—feel thousands of tiny bats rushing past you as they leave their roost at dusk.
  • Walk along Cammoo Circuit, a 600 m self-guided walk through old dry rainforest attached to limestone outcrops and formations.

Located 3 km south of Mackay.

Fort Lytton National Park (cultural and military history tours)

Fort Lytton cannon firing.

Hear the big guns roar as the historic 64 pounder and 6 pounder cannons are fired.

Visit Fort Lytton National Park to:

  • Discover the military history of Fort Lytton— a pentagonal fortress built in 1881 and used to protect Brisbane from attack until the end of the Second World War.
  • Book a guided tour of the historic ruins, colonial prison, forts and quarantine stations or walk around at your own pace.

Located at Lytton, on the southern bank of the Brisbane River.

St Helena Island National Park (cultural history tours)

Ruins at St Helena Island.

Tour the prison ruins, buildings, museum and cemeteries to learn about rough 19th century life.

Visit St Helena Island National Park to:

  • Discover the ruins of the State's first penal settlement, which operated from 1867 until 1932.
  • See remains of the prison stockade including the bakery, workshops and underground tanks, warder accommodation, sugar mill, lime kiln, jetty and Queensland's first tramway.
  • Book a guided tour or walk around at your own pace—the southern corner of the island is open to the public without a tour guide; and the rest of the island, including the prison ruins, is only accessed by guided tour.

Located in Moreton Bay, off Brisbane, accessible by boat from Manly or New Farm.

David Fleay Wildlife Park (wildlife presentations)

Mahogany glider.

The mahogany glider—once presumed extinct—is on display in the nocturnal house. This beautiful glider was rediscovered in 1989.

Visit David Fleay Wildlife Park to:

  • Explore three distinct wildlife habitats from a network of boardwalks and pathways.
  • See animals in settings as close as possible to their natural homes—including the endangered southern cassowary, yellow-bellied gliders and endangered mahogany gliders.
  • See iconic Australian animals including koalas, emus, brolgas and dingoes.
  • Watch a park ranger wildlife presentation to see platypus feeding, learn about snakes and tree-kangaroos, and watch crocodiles jump from the new feeding platform (select times only).

Located at Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast, 90 km south of Brisbane.

Mamu Tropical Skywalk (panoramic rainforest views)

A section of the skywalk looking out over the rainforest.

The skywalk has been designed to provide safe and easy access for visitors of all ages and abilities.

Visit Mamu Tropical Skywalk to experience the unique elevated walkways and enjoy World Heritage rainforest with close-up views of plants, insects and birds.

  • Walk the elevated skywalk—350 m long, rising from ground level to 15 m above the ground.
  • Climb the 10 m long cantilever and 37 m high observation tower with two viewing decks, providing views over the North Johnstone River gorge and surrounding rainforest.
  • Explore more than 1100 m of forest walking tracks, connecting the elevated skywalk, cantilever and tower.

Located 115 km (90 minutes drive) south of Cairns.

South East Queensland Wildlife Centre (wildlife presentations)

Ranger showing children a snake skin.

South East Queensland Wildlife Centre has daily animal feeding sessions and wildlife talks given by rangers.

Visit the South East Queensland Wildlife Centre to:

  • Learn about our wildlife in natural habitat exhibits—reptiles, amphibians, birds, fish and mammals.
  • Discover nocturnal wildlife in a night-house and birds in the walk-through aviary.
  • See up close a platypus, wombat and kangaroos.
  • Join a Wild Encounters daily animal feeding session and wildlife talk by rangers (book at the Visitor Centre).
  • View many of our national parks through a virtual lookout platform at the Visitor Centre, and walk along the banks of the Enoggera Reservoir.

Located at The Gap, 12 km from Brisbane’s city centre.

Ex-HMAS Brisbane Dive Access (world-class dive site)

Divers exploring the front gun.

Photo courtesy of and copyright Scuba World, Mooloolaba.

The wreck is an artificial reef that offers excellent habitats for marine life and exciting opportunities for divers.

Dive the ex-HMAS Brisbane—a former Royal Australian Navy warship:

  • Explore the growing artificial reef in 28m of water (all vessels, divers and snorkelers need a permit).
  • See clownfish, blue and green wrasse, octopus, scorpion fish, lion fish, puffers, massive Queensland Groupers, flathead, hermit crabs, occasional leopard shark or shovel nose ray and bull rays.
  • Book a dive tour with a licensed dive tour operator (permit supplied) or obtain a QPWS permit for private divers—all divers must have a recognised scuba diving qualification.

Located 9km offshore from Mooloolaba, 100 km north of Brisbane.

Undara Volcanic National Park (lava flow remains)

The Arch lava tube.

The Undara lava tube system is Australia's longest— it contains craters, lava ponds and flows, and perennial springs.

Visit Undara Volcanic National Park to:

  • Explore one of the longest lava tube cave systems in the world from an eruption about 190,000 years ago.
  • See rainforest plants and wildlife such as rock-wallabies, bat colonies and owls in the caves.
  • Book a guided tour of the lava tubes (access is by guided-tour only)
  • Take a walking trail to explore the national park.

Located 300 km south-west of Cairns or 420 km north-west of Townsville.

Licence
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia (CC BY 3.0)
Last updated
25 June 2014
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