10 Things to Do While You Wait for your Heron Island Transfer

The breathtaking beauty of the troubled Great Barrier Reef may never be the same as it is right now, especially at Heron Island. Heron Island should be on everyone’s bucket list, located as it is right on the reef itself!

But to get to the island, you have to take a flight to Gladstone, and from there take a boat offshore to the reefs. The boats generally leave once a day at 10 am, and don’t ply on Tuesdays and Thursdays. So, what can you do in Gladstone while you wait for your transfer? Here’s some advice.

1. Check Out the Gladstone Visitor Center

You’ll need to go there anyway to book your ferry to Heron Island. But while there, do check out what’s cooking. Locals there will be happy to help you with event and tour ideas. And the boardwalk is great for walking and enjoying the marina, even with kids (there are play areas for the little ones).

2. Go on a Morning Coffee Cruise

Try and book the coffee cruise around the harbor. You can book this at the visitor center. It includes commentary, excellent coffee and muffins, plus superb views.

3. Gamble at the Pokies

If you’re bored in your hotel room and yearning for some action, you can always check out what the local pokies have to offer. Gladstone is Queensland’s gambling hotspot, and spending time at the poker and gaming machines are popular activities before going to Heron Island. Luxury casinos will bring you a lot of

4. Take your Kids to the East Shores Water Park

Kids will love the fountains, playgrounds and space to run around in at the Easy Shores Water Park. It’s lit up at night, and you can enjoy burger and gelato while you’re there. Plus, it’s free!

5. Walk in the Tondoon Botanic Gardens

The lush vegetation and tall trees of these botanic gardens offer plenty of relaxing walking trails to nature lovers. You will find turtles in the lake, mossy paths where you can enjoy walking without your shoes on, and a BBQ area for a picnic. The kids will love the playground too.

6. Admire Local Art

The Gladstone Regional Art Gallery and Museum is a great place for art lovers to check out what’s going on in the local art scene. The gallery exhibition changes often. Plus it is housed in a beautiful old Town Hall with oak timber-work.

7. Take a Racket to the Tennis & Squash Club

Get some action going on the tennis and squash courts at the Gladstone Tennis & Squash Club. You’ll find the prices to rent a court are inexpensive, and the people are nice. If you’re alone, you could join the organized social playing activity, twice a week.

8. Relax at the Gecko Valley Winery

This winery is a great place to sit outdoors and enjoy the beautiful hillside scenery on a cool summery day, or sample the excellent menu and local wine indoors.

9. Hang Out at the Turf Club

If the races thrill you, you can enjoy the meets held at the regional Turf Club, with a large bar, betting area and a mixed crowd of casual and well-dressed punters.

10. Catch a Show at the Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre

This is a great convention centre to check out local shows, concerts, theater and other programs. With so many things to do in Gladstone, the wait for your ferry to Heron Island will pass by in a breeze.