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Talk to any fresh-faced traveller who has just arrived in Australia, ask them where they plan on visiting and you’ll usually hear the same answer, “Sydney Harbour, Gold Coast, Cairns and maybe the Whitsundays.”

Yet one of the greatest things about spending time in any country is putting down the guidebook, talking to the locals and finding out about some amazing hidden or unusual places; after all, it’s always good to see something a bit different! As such, I thought I’d let you in on 7 great places to visit in Queensland if you’re looking to do just that.

7. Boodjamulla National Park

You cannot miss out on Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park. This is one of Australia’s most incredible stretches of preserved wilderness with plenty of hiking, camping, bird watching and kayaking available. The park is characterised by steep sandstone gorges, fossil fields and crystal-clear green waters and there is an amazing swimming hole at Adels Grove.

6. Dingo Beach

Once you spend just a little time in Queensland talking to a few fellow travellers, you’re going to hear about Airlie Beach. No one, however, will tell you about Dingo Beach. Whilst Airlie is the mid-Queensland Coast’s mecca for backpackers, Dingo Beach is the place that only locals in the know go to chill out and relax.

5. Purple Pub

The Purple Pub is situated in the town of Normanton in the Gulf of the Carpentaria. If you are one of those people looking for the authentic Queensland Outback watering hole experience, this is the pub to try! The Purple Pub is one of the best places to visit in Queensland and handily offers rooms for the night, as well as drinking activities!

4. Dinosaur Trackways

Far out west near the town of Winton, lies the world’s only recorded evidence of a dinosaur stampede. Dating back 95 million years, the footprints here inspired scenes in Jurassic Park and the surrounding museums and exhibitions make this the dinosaur capital of Australia and one of the best places to visit in Queensland.

3. Byfield Rainforest

Byfield is a fantastic rainforest, situated about 30 minutes north of Yeppoon on Queensland’s Capricorn coast. This place has quite an alternative vibe, with a real emphasis on relaxing and getting back to nature. Enjoy bushwalking, cycling or take a few days and explore the nearby Great Keppel Island too.

2. Mount Isa

Mount Isa is a surprising one on this list considering it’s a mining town situated in Northwest Queensland and not usually a recommendation for tourists. Once a year, however, the Mt Isa Rodeo takes place and this is the time to visit! Held every year, the Mt Isa Rodeo is one of the largest held in the Southern Hemisphere and taking part is a once in a lifetime event! Running since 1958, the event now attracts more than 25,000 visitors who all come to watch some of the world’s best cowboys and girls compete for the $200,00 prize money!

1. Carnarvon Gorge

Northwest of Brisbane, Carnarvon Creek has carved a winding course through sandstone over millions of years. The resulting Gorge, now part of Carnarvon National Park, is an oasis in the semi-arid heart of Central Queensland and a haven for birds and wildlife. Camping, hiking and kayaking are all great activities to enjoy in and around the gorge, certainly making this one of the best places to visit in Queensland.

So that’s my list of the 7 great spots to visit in Queensland if you’re looking to see something a bit different! Hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

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Stephanie Parker / Big World Small Pockets

Stephanie Parker is a travel addict and creator of Big World Small Pockets. Originally from Jersey, Channel Islands, but currently based in Australia, she backpacks the world on a shoestring collecting tips, advice and stories, to share with a smile.

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