Mackay Airport is the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef and beyond. Situated in North East Queensland, Mackay is simply magical, and home to Australia’s longest stretch of subtropical rainforest. It’s clear that as soon as you turn the keys in your Thrifty rental car at Mackay Airport, you’ll be on an adventure of a lifetime.
With a blissful tropical climate all year round, you can expect endless days of sunshine in the right season when you visit Mackay. The summer season is generally hot and wet, with the coast benefitting from a cool sea breeze. Mackay is also the perfect place for a winter break, with warm sunny temperatures throughout.
Mackay is the perfect spot for a road trip. As it’s situated eight hours south of Cairns and 11 hours north of Brisbane, you have the beautiful east coast to explore on your roadie! Once you pick up your rental car from Mackay Airport, this tropical city is your oyster, so buckle up and get set for endless days of exploring and discovering all it has to offer.
Have the Road Trip of a Lifetime from Mackay Airport with Thrifty
Mackay is the doorway to so many east coast adventures. Make sure to start your day bright and early and catch the glorious sunrise at Cape Hillsborough. While you’re there, keep an eye out for the kangaroos and wallabies that venture to the sand every morning for a spot of their seedpod brekkie.
For those wanting to escape the concrete jungle, head to a real one instead. Mackay is home to Eungella, meaning ‘a land in the clouds’, and it won’t disappoint. Here, the peaks of Eungella are constantly decorated with clouds, creating the most incredible sight. This spot is 800m above sea level, so pack a spare jumper just in case in the back of your Thrifty car - it could get chilly!
If you fancy a break from driving, then boat trips to the Great Barrier Reef have you covered. Simply drive to the harbour and park up for the day while you head off to explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Natural Wonder of the World. Spend the day snorkelling and exploring the Great Barrier Reef that magically sits on the doorstep of the Mackay region!
And, if road trips are your vibe, you must add Pioneer Valley to your itinerary. Drive through Mackay-Eungella Road and stop in the local towns like Marian, Garget, Pinnacle, and Mirani for some delicious food and local hospitality.
Experience All That Mackay Has to Offer with Thrifty
While Mackay is famous for its natural beauty, the city itself is definitely worth exploring. For history lovers, pay special attention to the architecture of the buildings in Mackay. In fact, take the Heritage Walk to learn all about the 1920s and 30’s Art Deco buildings and the history of Mackay.
For those wanting to explore at their own pace, we recommend starting at the Bluewater Quay. Follow the banks of the Pioneer River and have a tea break at one of the many bustling riverside cafes, like The Deli Nook, 9th Lane Grind, or Chances Cafe.
For those wanting to cool off from the warm sun, take a dip at Bluewater Lagoon or Harbour Beach. Both are popular spots with locals and tourists alike! While at Harbour Beach, keep a lookout for the luxury yachts while you have your arvo BBQ.
If art and culture is your jam, make the trip to Artspace Mackay. Located on Gordon’s Street, this regional art gallery hosts an exciting program of visual arts and social history. Or take your camera and check out Queen’s Park, home to a large collection of beautiful orchids at the Ken Burgess Orchid House.
Mackay Airport is the start of your next adventure. Start the ignition and get set for an adventure of a tropical lifetime - from the bush to the beach, you’ll have plenty to see and do! For more information on local destinations, head to our blog - we’ll see you at Mackay Airport!