Road Trip: Southern Great Barrier Reef – Wrap Up

Sponsored by Tourism and Events Queensland

I long to be back on this beach in the middle of the ocean! I’m reflecting back on our busy long weekend in the Southern Great Barrier Reef region and writing a wrap up retracing our travel steps.  I did the same thing after our road trip from Brisbane, right down to Canberra in 2011. 

Lady Elliot Island

Southern Great Barrier Reef

The Southern Great Barrier Reef stretches from Bundaberg — includes Lady Elliot, Lady Musgrove, Herron, Wilson and Great Keppel islands — through to Gladstone and up to the Capricorn Coast.  There are higher profile areas of the Great Barrier Reef, which what makes the southern part so fun to visit: it’s a hidden gem of a place to explore and you can find many quiet spots of beach magic along the coast. The region is family friendly, stunningly beautiful, the weather is conducive to all kinds of outdoor fun (even during Winter), and there is a natural, relaxed pace.

Southern Great Barrier Reef Region

Day 1: Exploring Childers

Childers is an archetypal Queensland town full of charm and character nestled amongst the cain fields.  See pictures and read more about our day in Childers here.

Day 2: Exploring Lady Elliot Island

The highlight by far!  The kids keep saying “I can’t believe we swam in the Great Barrier Reef!” We were all blown away by this experience; if you get the chance do it, the memory lasts a lifetime.   More of this special day here.

Day 3: Exploring Bundaberg

The capital of the Southern Great Barrier Reef: an historic sugar town and a great place to base yourself when exploring this amazing region.   What we did in Bundaberg is here.

Southern Great Barrier Reef - Bundaberg

Southern Great Barrier Reef - Bundaberg

Even though we managed to cram a lot into the weekend, there seemed to be so many more things we could have done had we had the time.  Bundaberg is only 4 hours from Brisbane and we will be back, to enjoy the things we loved and explore those we have yet to experience.

Our Route 

Queensland Road Trip - Brisbane to Great Barrier Reef

Southern Great Barrier Reef

Travel Stops

1. Brisbane QLD 

2. Kybong QLD (There’s a huge Matilda travel station here; a great place to stop)

3. Lake Redbrook Holiday Retreat, 122 Farnsfield Rd, North Isis QLD 4660

4. Snakes Downunder Reptile Park and Zoo, 51 Lucketts Rd, Childers QLD 4660

5. Mammino Gourmet Ice Cream, 89 Churchill St, Childers QLD 4660

6. Kellys Beach Resort, 6 Trevors Rd, Bargara QLD 4670

7. Bundaberg Airport, Airport Dr, Kensington QLD 4670

8. Kellys Beach Resort, 6 Trevors Rd, Bargara QLD 4670

9. Lady Elliot Island Resort, Lady Elliot Island QLD 4216

10. The Bundaberg Barrel, 147 Bundaberg-Bargara Rd, Bundaberg QLD 4670

11. SSS Strawberries, LOT 2 Rosedale Rd, Oakwood QLD 4670

12. Grunske’s by the River, 11E Petersen St, Bundaberg QLD 4670

13. Playground near Lake Ellen, Bundaberg South, Queensland 

14. Gympie QLD

15. Brisbane QLD – Home again

In Words & Pictures

I need to finish this off by throwing out some words and pictures.

Explorer hands

Southern Great Barrier Reef - Lady Elliot Island



Blue, blue water

Snorkel right off the beach - Lady Elliot Island

Beach curls

beach curls

Colours, everywhere

Coloured coral

Watching my husband as a father

watching my husband father

New experiences

Southern Great Barrier Reef - Lady Elliot Island

A sense of wonder


Seek tenderness

Cuddling a snake

The wind, the sky and a smile

the wind and the sky

That joy!

strawberry picking

Other Posts

Hidden Treasure Challenge – Southern Great Barrier Reef

Day 1: Southern Great Barrier Reef (Childers)

Day 2: Southern Great Barrier Reef (Lady Elliot Island)

Day 3: Southern Great Barrier Reef (Bundaberg)

Wrap Up Video

Thank to Tourism & Events Queensland for working with me on this little project. I aim to continue to showcase more of this beautiful country we live in!

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