Lonely Planet rates Cairns region tops for families

Lonely Planet has named Far North Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef as the Number One family-friendly destination in Queensland and fourth best Australia-wide.

Cairns and the FNQ region rated above the Gold Coast theme parks, Victorian High Country, Kangaroo Island and south-west Western Australia in the respected travel guide's list of Australia's Top 10 family-friendly destinations. Queensland scored two other places in the Top 10 list.

The list is based on points from reviewers who travelled widely across the country to create the list.

"Launch your Great Barrier Reef expedition from Cairns or Port Douglas, with a high-speed catamaran trip to an inner-reef atoll or an extended day trip to the pristine outer reef. Either way, snorkeling over this hyper-coloured world is mind-blowing," says Lonely Planet. 

"Scuba diving is an option for teens; a sedate sail in a glass-bottom boat will help the little ones to see into the sea. 

"Back on dry land, far north Queensland resorts are geared for family function, with structured activities, pools, waterslides, wave skis, paddleboards and kids' food options all standard issue."

Australia's Top 10 Family-Friendly Destinations according to Lonely Planet are:

  1. Sydney Harbour
  2. Touring Tasmania
  3. Darwin & the Top End National Parks
  4. Far North Queensland & the Great Barrier Reef
  5. Canberra
  6. Gold Coast Theme Parks
  7. Victorian High Country
  8. Kangaroo Island
  9. Brisbane
  10. Southwest WA
Last updated: 10 July 2015