Mackay is the largest city in the Whitsundays region and the commercial centre. It is a thriving vibrant city with a strong local economy with plenty of agricultural and mining enterprises contributing strongly to its economic activities. Mackay is a major stopover point for travellers moving north or south along the Bruce Highway. There are dozens of motels and hotels in town that cater for the overnight traveller. Do not, under any circumstances, travel to Mackay without an accommodation booking in place. Mackay is booked out almost every night and it is a long drive to the next town to find a place to stay. The city has a large commercial centre with plenty of shops and shopping plaza's and tourists are well catered for with plenty of cafes and restaurants to choose from.
Mackay now has a sensational new marina and boat harbour area which caters for ferry's accessing some of the Whitsunday Island resorts and plenty of day trips to entertain tourists. This is one of the best places on the Queensland coast to go on a reef fishing expedition and when the weather is good, fantastic catches of Scarlet Sea Perch, Red Emporer, Coral Trout, Spanish mackerel and Sweetlip can be expected from the surrounding reefs. Fishing in Australia is some of the best in the world due to the proper management of the resource. Surrounding the marina is a new accommodation precinct with lots of holiday apartments and hotel accommodation on offer. There are also ancillary enterprises like a tavern, cafes and restaurants.
Mackay has a domestic airport with regular flights from all east coast cities. It also has some great beachfront resorts on the northern side of the town in areas like Blacks Beach. In the Mackay hinterland there are some very special places to visit. The Eungella National Park is approximately 1 hour's drive into the hinterland. The mountain ranges here have produced some spectacular rain forest filled valleys and ridges with magnificent views over the coast line. The rivers here are one of the best places in Australia to spot a platypus and the dams are stocked with the mighty barramundi so if you fancy some sport fishing Mackay could well be a great place to visit.
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