Top four reasons to explore the Great Barrier Reef.
When it comes to natural attractions and beautiful scenery, Australia is pretty spoilt, and what better way to take advantage of this than on your next Queensland family holiday.
As one of Australia's most popular family holiday destinations, Queensland offers plenty of activities and attractions.
However, it's safe to say that any trip to Queensland would be incomplete without checking out one of its most beautiful natural sights, the Great Barrier Reef!
Located in the Coral Sea just off the state's coast, the reef is packed with things to do and see - but here are the top four reasons you should consider including a trip to the reef into your itinerary.
1. A natural wonder
Without a doubt, the Great Barrier Reef is one of Australia's most beautiful natural attractions, a breathtaking sight that pulls in visitors both from within the country and overseas.
Tourism in the Great Barrier Reef is estimated to generate over $4 billion annually, and it's not hard to see why - with its vibrant natural beauty, the reef has been named as one of the seven wonders of the world by CNN and has been a World Heritage Site since 1981.
It's the world's largest coral reef system, comprised of more than 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching over 2,600 km - and it can even be seen from outer space!
"There are a wide range of dive sites all along the reef as well as calm, protected and shallow spots perfect for beginners around the islands, so every family member can get in on the fun."
2. Diverse and full of life
The reef supports a wide variety of life and has a diverse ecology thriving underneath its crystal clear waters.
Many vulnerable or endangered species of sea animals reside within the Great Barrier Reef - it's home to 30 species of whales, dolphins, and porpoises as well as large populations of dugongs.
The reef is also home to a diverse range of fish, sea snake and sea turtle species, so if you happen to be scuba diving, snorkelling or cruising along the reef you're sure to catch a glimpse of a few of these beautiful creatures.
3. Make a splash
Luckily for visitors to this beautiful region, there are plenty of diving and snorkelling tourism operations running in the Whitsundays and Cairns areas, so you can get right up close to all of the action under the water.
The Great Barrier Reef is perfect for families who fancy a bit of a swim, as it is renowned for its beautiful diving locations and warm, clear waters.
There are a wide range of dive sites all along the reef as well as calm, protected and shallow spots perfect for beginners around the islands, so every family member can get in on the fun.
Once underwater, you'll be treated to an amazing view of all the gorgeous wildlife and scenery the reef has to offer.
4. Cruising the reef
If you're not inclined to get in the water, you can still treat your family to an amazing experience at the Great Barrier Reef with a boat trip or a helicopter tour.
Glass bottom boat tours allow you to get a great view of all the natural beauty of the reef without having to get into the water, so this option is perfect for family members who may not be able to swim or are very young.
A helicopter tour will also give your family a unique view of the reef from high above the water, with the extra option of visiting incredible locations that would otherwise be inaccessible, like the Coral Sand Cay.
Visitors staying at hotels in Cairns like Mantra Trilogy will be pleased to know they'll be close to tourism operators like Great Barrier Reef Helicopters, one of the largest and most experienced helicopter charter companies in Queensland.