Great Barrier Reef: Places to Explore


Lizard Island

The small, upscale resort on secluded Lizard Island, just under 150 mi off the North Queensland coast, is the farthest north of any Barrier Reef hideaway. At 2,500 acres, it's larger than and quite different from other islands in the region. Composed mostly of granite, Lizard has a remarkable diversity of vegetation and terrain; here grassy hills give way to rocky slabs interspersed with valleys of rain forest.

Ringed by two dozen white-sand beaches, the island is actually a national park with some of the best examples of fringing coral of any of the resort areas. Excellent walking trails lead to key lookouts with spectacular views of the coast. The highest point, Cook's Look (1,180 feet), is the historic spot from which, in August 1770, Captain Cook finally spied a passage through the reef that had held him captive for a thousand miles. Large monitor lizards, after which the island is named, often bask in this area.

Lizard Island at a Glance


Sports and Outdoors