Welcome to the Capricorn Coast, home of Rockhampton and Great Keppel Island, gateway to the Great Barrier Reef and northern Queensland's unspoiled coastlines.
Great Keppel Island is located within the Great Barrier Reef world heritage area along the Capricorn Coast of Central Queensland. It lies 15 kilometres from the coast off Yeppoon and is the largest of the eighteen islands in the Keppel Group.
Rockhampton or, 'Rocky' if you're a local, is proudly referred to as Australia's beef capital. It takes this title because of its close proximity to some of the country's larger cattle stations. Rocky is where local farmers come to trade. It is a coastal town situated on the Tropic of Capricorn in Darumbal country traditional home of the Darumbal Aboriginal people.
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Planning on staying in Rockhampton on your way to Great Keppel Island and the Great Barrier Reef? Here's what you shouldn't miss.
- Visit the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens and venture into the Rockhampton Zoo, home to more than 250 native and exotic animals.
- Koorana Crocodile Farm to experience the powerful estuarine crocodiles shoot vertically out of the water to catch their food.
- Watch the various wildlife such as birds, dolphins or whales at play on Great Keppel Island
- Book a snorkel or dive trip, a sunset cruise or an island drop off, or bring your own gear and adventure out to the 17 pristine beaches - with water skiing, wake boarding and tubing trips also offered.
- Camping is also allowed in the Keppel Bay Islands National Parks of North Keppel Island
The Capricorn Coast, where bush meets beach. Rockhampton's bustling country-town streets to Great Keppel's remote island beaches brings the best of two worlds.
Rockhampton is a coastal Queensland town situated on the Tropic of Capricorn in Darumbal country. The central business district, particularly Quay Street and East Street, make one of Australia's most elegant streetscapes. The concentration of old buildings, tree-lined streets and the Fitzroy River make Rockhampton a unique place.
Attractions in this region range from the informative to the adventurous, from the mainland to the deep sea. They include the Rocky Arcade Markets held every Sunday, the Mount Archer Lookout, the gardens tearooms and zoo located in the botanic gardens, Capricorn Caves, Byfield National Park, Cooper Downs Cattle Station, Blackwater BHP Coal Mine and the Rockhampton Art Gallery.
Great Keppel Island
Great Keppel Island is one of the Coral Sea's stunning unspoilt gems. Boasting a generous spattering of remote sandy white beaches with pristine aqua waters. Up until recently the amenities have been basic but change has come to these parts with additional accomodation, activities and facilities following in its wake. Think eco luxury villas, golf course, premium retail village, day spa and research centre all proposed to be coming soon.
Great Keppel Island is home to 90 species of birds that call the island home. Dolphins and whales play in its waters during the winter months. Divers and snorkllers can experience 40 locations and see tropical fish, hard and soft coral, friendly turtles, sea snakes, dolphins and giant manta rays.
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Rockhampton has a subtropical climate with dry humid summers and mild winters. Divided by the tropic of Capricorn, the region is south of the tropics and therefore doesn't experience heavy monsoon seasons or rainfall. It's also far enough north to escape the cold fronts of the south east coast. Average temperatures reach a maximum of 32°C and a minimum of 22°C in summer with temperatures falling to 23-9°C in winter.
From the airport
Rockhampton Airport is quite centrally located, and only 10 minutes from the city centre which makes it relatively easy affair to get there.
If you're visiting the region the best option is to hire a car so you can explore and take in the sights in your own time. Qantas Frequent Flyers can earn Qantas Points^ when booking with Avis and Budget, while you can enjoy great rates and no booking fee with all our car rental partners.
The alternative option is to book a taxi to get you where you need to go.
Rockhampton car hire
Enjoy great rates with Avis, Budget, Hertz or Thrifty and no booking fees. Qantas Frequent Flyers can also earn Qantas Points^ with Avis and Budget.
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* Prices are based on payment at qantas.com by BPAY or POLi for bookings made 7 days or more before departure or by debit or prepaid card for bookings made within 7 days of departure. A fee applies for other card payments. Fares may not be available on all flights or days. Some flights are operated by partner or subsidiary airlines. Prices are not guaranteed until payment is made. Prices may fluctuate if taxes or foreign exchange rate change. Add Card Payment Fee per passenger, per booking: credit/debit cards AU$7 domestic or trans-Tasman or AU$30 international; debit/prepaid cards AU$2.50 domestic or trans-Tasman or AU$10 international. Also add AU$30 for domestic or AU$60 international per passenger for bookings made on 13 13 13 or at the airport. Passengers booking Premium Economy may be seated in Economy on connecting flights. Check the fare rules for more details before booking. Inclusions vary between flights. All schedules subject to change, including last minute aircraft changes. QantasLink flights operated by Sunstate Airlines (Qld) Pty Ltd ABN 82 009 734 703, Eastern Australia Airlines Pty Ltd ABN 77 001 599 024, and National Jet Systems Pty Ltd ABN 11 008 279 203. Licence No per state: QLD – 407, NSW – 2TA000237, VIC – 30362, SA – TTA155, WA – 9TA52.
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** Prices are per room, per night and vary depending on date of check in, length of stay and room type. Conditions apply.