This Tropical Island Is The Perfect Combination Of Crowd-Free But Close To Civilization

Some of us love vacationing in bustling cities that offer shows, food, and just about every amenity under the sun. Others prefer secluded spots where we can delve into nature, largely untouched by humans. And then some seek that sweet spot of nature-filled adventures in close proximity to towns or cities that offer modern conveniences and fun activities. For those looking for the "Goldilocks" vacation spot that's just right, Great Keppel Island in Australia could be just for you.

Great Keppel Island is part of the Great Barrier Reef and offers all sorts of adventures and expeditions that range from hiking tropical forests to snorkeling and seeing a wide range of colorful fish and sea creatures. It's quieter than other islands close to the Great Barrier Reef and is only a short, 30-minute ferry ride away from Rosslyn Bay and Yeppoon, meaning you're relatively close to a town. You'll find accommodations and restaurants at this hidden gem destination.

There are plenty of adventures to choose from

Once you hop off the ferry, you'll have an array of activities to choose from. The island that's about 54 square miles is home to 17 stunning Australian beaches, each of them alive with vibrant sea life swimming in its waters. Places like Keppel Dive Water Sports offer scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, and scenic boat tours of the Great Barrier Reef.

Back on land, you'll have plenty of hiking options ranging from pleasant trails just over a mile long to longer journeys that are more challenging. You can venture from Svendsen's Beach to Butterfly Bay if you want something short and sweet. This moderate hike covers 1.5 miles of beautiful beaches and cliff-side trails and will take you about an hour to complete. For those looking for something intense and challenging, you can attempt the Lighthouse Trail, which takes you throughout the island as you trek the 9.5-mile trail.

When to visit Great Keppel Island

As we mentioned, the wildlife is spectacular. You can plan your vacation dates according to which animals you want to see most. If you visit between January and March, you increase your chances of seeing sea turtles since it's hatching season and whales are often spotted from May to August. You're more likely to encounter jellyfish between November and May, which can be a good or a bad thing depending on the type of water activities you want to do. You can take advantage of this great whale-watching opportunity by going on a tour to witness the massive mammals in their natural habitat. Places like Keppel Konnections give the chance to spot some from the safety and comfort of a boat.

If you want to spend a couple of days on Great Keppel Island, be sure to grocery shop before heading out or be prepared to dine at a restaurant for each meal since there aren't any grocery stores on the island. As for accommodations, customize your experience by indulging in luxury or keeping it simple and rustic. You can bring a tent and camp out, or you can rent a beachfront cabin.