Click here for the best places to stay in Queensland

All our Queensland collections:

Queensland has a lot more to offer than perfect beaches, but even if you don't make it further inland to the mountain ranges, sugar cane fields and dry mining towns, it's hard not to fall in love with this tourist darling. The best places to stay in Queensland are sprinkled throughout the laid-back centres and further out onto the reef and into the isolated and pristine far north.

For most visitors to Australia, Queensland - the 'Sunshine State' - is a much looked forward to part of their adventures. This is where Australia's coastline of tropical paradise can be found, and there really is a beach for everyone. At the southern end the beaches are golden and the northern beaches are made of minuscule grounds of bright white coral. On one side of this sand barrier are the dense green palaces of rainforest, and on the other the dazzling colours of The Reef.

Despite its popularity with visitors there are still plenty of quieter, less travelled spots in Queensland, if that's what you're looking for. For many, a drive up the coast is a way of seeing both the tourist highlights and the rough diamonds.

As for the main centres, apparently it's not enough for state capital Brisbane to be right up against the beaches of one of the world's most beautiful coastlines, it's also made a beach of its riverbank. With Brisbane's surfeit of beaches comes the sunshine, and the often tropical feeling humidity, which fuels a laid-back, relaxed vibe, with a great open-air dining and drinking scene. The shiny casinos and visitor attractions of the Gold Coast are relatively new, money was poured into the city for Expo '88, and Dream World, Sea World and Movie World lend Brisbane a 'Florida Down Under' feel - hence the local nickname, "Bris-vegas".

But that's just one part of town, and if you're looking for charming old Queenslanders, colonial architecture and local arts and culture then you'll not be disappointed. You'll also find a city rich with tropical gardens and welcoming public spaces - Brisbane is a wonderful place for a stroll.

Cairns is another laid-back, visitor friendly, tropical town. It's also close to the Great Barrier Reef, the magical Daintree Rainforest and hippy town Kuranda, and for many people Cairns is the beginning or the end of a journey up Australia's east coast.

As well as being a great base for some fantastic day trips, Cairns is also becoming a bit of an adventure capital, with diving, sailing, skydiving, hang gliding, ballooning, kayaking, whale watching and mountain biking all on offer. There are also plenty of operators who'll ferry you out into the Atherton Tablelands and up the coast in 4WDs. And of course the Kuranda Scenic Railway. And you're surrounded by pristine rainforest riddled with little tracks and trails.

Sandwiched between the reef and the rainforest, Port Douglas is a higher end piece of paradise, complete with a charming village, lovely marina, great bars, fantastic Sunday markets and some truly excellent cafes and restaurants.

Port Douglas is just an hour from the outer reef and an hour and a half from Cape Tribulation, so it's an amazing place to try your hand at sailing or fishing and there are numerous things to do in and around the beaches and the rainforests.

If you're interested in Queensland's islands, then the Whitsunday Group, sprinkled down the Queensland coast and surrounded by the calm, bright blue waters of the Coral Sea and the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef, might be your idea of paradise. Most of the Whitsunday Islands are designated national parks (69 of the 74 islands are entirely national parkland) - both on and off shore, hence the small number which are inhabited. And only seven of the islands in the group have accommodation options, ranging from camping on Hook Island to exclusive private island resorts.

Our selection of the best places to stay in Queensland ranges far and wide, from luxury rainforest lodges to sleek urban properties in Brisbane.

Best Places to Stay in Queensland

For Brisbane city breaks

  • In the heart of the nightlife district, the Limes Hotel has just 21 rooms, designed for the sophisticated party-goer. Small, but comfortably furnished, rooms have their own kitchenettes, perfect for mixing cocktails, or you can have one mixed for you in the rooftop bar with its two plunge pools.
  • Great value and right in the heart of town, the Hotel Urban has city views, a pool, bars, a gym and restaurant, and the vibe matches the name. The 179 rooms start from around £65 per night.
  • The Emporium Hotel is vibrant and fun, with a fabulous rooftop pool with city views, and easy access to bars and restaurants.
  • Spicers Balfour is a stylish nine room boutique hotel in New Farm, right by the river. Rooms are set around a lush courtyard and tropical gardens. And there's a spa, to make sure you're suitably relaxed at all times. You're also just 15minutes walk from the centre of town.

For The Great Barrier Reef

  • The QT Port Douglas is just back from the beach, and out of town, so it's ideal for visitors looking for a peaceful stay amongst tropical gardens. The decor is chic and retro and the well lit rooms look out onto either the hotel lagoon pool or the gardens. They also have apartments with one or two bedrooms.
  • One&Only Hayman Island is a private island resort about three miles by five in size and on the outer edge of the Whitsunday group, right on the reef. Rooms, suites, villas and penthouses are luxurious, each with a balcony looking out to sea.

For a relaxing beach break

  • The Shangri-La Hotel, Cairns is a five star luxury resort with all the trappings. You're right on the edge of the marina, with views over the water, the lush, topical hotel gardens or Cairns itself. As well as the peaceful spot, there are excellent facilities, including a fitness centre, and of course, waterfront dining.
  • An oldy but a goody, the Daydream Island Resort and Spa is a large resort known for family relaxation. There's a choice of spas, pools and restaurants and plenty of opportunities to explore the reef, or just relax on the beautiful, white, sandy beaches.

For an island paradise

  • Qualia is a small, stylish resort, offering the ultimate beachside resort experience. As well as the perfect beach, luxury spa and numerous private pools, Qualia is surrounded by lush tropical rainforest - a proper island paradise.
  • The Hamilton Island Yacht Club Villas are a collection of luxurious, self contained villas, each with four ensuite bedrooms and kitchen and laundry facilities, and all opening out onto the beach with views of the Whitsundays. You're also close to the Hamilton Island Marina.
  • The Palm Bay Resort is on Long Island, just off the mainland, and offers luxurious self catering accommodation in light, airy rooms with stunning views.

Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Queensland, or contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice.

Photo of Queensland

Search hotel availability

The best hotels in Queensland

Refine this list »         Check online rates
  • Hotel Urban


    Sleek and stylish contemporary hotel close to the city centre ensuring good value for money. City views from some rooms, plus a restaurant, bar and gym. For the urban-chic traveller - a well named establishment.

    179 rooms from $78
    Views  -  Stunning views over looking the Brisbane skyline
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor/outdoor
    Sights nearby  -  Well located for major sights.
  • QT Port Douglas

    Port Douglas

    Set back from the beach and away from the hustle and bustle of the town, QT is perfectly situated for a relaxing stay. Fun, light filled rooms, with chic retro decor, look out onto the garden or pool. One or two bed apartments are ideal for families or groups.

    170 rooms from $106
    On the beach  -  In front of the hotel.
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor/outdoor
    Recommended by  -  Mr & Mrs Smith
  • Shangri-La Hotel, Cairns

    Cairns (Pierpoint Road)

    Five star luxury with all the trappings. Large and spacious rooms all with balconies with views either over the city, gardens or bay. Excellent facilities including outdoor pool, fitness centre and spa, and waterfront dining. A great spot on the Marina away from the main street.

    256 rooms from $117
    Lively area  -  Located on Marina
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor/outdoor
  • Daydream Island Resort and Spa

    Whitsunday Islands

    The very name of the island invites total relaxation, which is exactly what this resort offers. Deluxe suites, three outdoor spas and a choice of restaurants make this the ideal place to unwind after a day exploring the reef. Particularly geared up for families.

    296 rooms from $118
    Great walks  -  In the rainforest
    Views  -  Out to reef
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
    Seaside  -  Ideal for a seaside holiday.
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
  • QT Gold Coast

    Gold Coast

    This jazzy hotel has gone in for vibrant and retro decor, matching its lively central location in the heart of Surfers Paradise. With the beach a stone's throw away, sea-facing rooms have spectacular ocean views, whilst others face the mountains. Fantastic spa on the lower level.

    297 rooms from $124
    Swimming Pool  -  Outdoor pool
    Lively  -  Hip and happening.
    Surfing  -  Suitable beaches nearby.
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Fodors, Mr & Mrs Smith
  • InterContinental Sanctuary Cove

    Gold Coast (Hope Island)

    Luxury hotel on the banks of the Coomera River marina in a 1940s building. Rooms are large and light, with timber sleigh beds and wooden floors overlooking the marina and lush tropical gardens. With an acclaimed golf course and one acre lagoon beach.

    243 rooms from $124
    Sights nearby  -  Gold coast theme parks such as Dreamworld and Warner Bros Movieworld
    Views  -  Coomera River marina
    Fishing  -  Excellent fishing nearby.
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
  • Emporium Hotel

    Brisbane (Fortitude Valley)

    This contemporary hotel is vibrant and fun inside which adds to the character and charm. A rooftop swimming pool with views across the city is the perfect way to unwind. Easy access to shops within the precinct and the city's top bars, restaurants and sights.

    102 rooms from $130
    Swimming Pool  -  Rooftop pool with sauna and loungers
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Sights nearby  -  Well located for major sights.
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
  • Limes Hotel

    Brisbane (Fortitude Valley)

    Situated in the centre of the city's entertainment and nightlife district "the valley", this is a designer hotel for the sophisticated party-goer. Comfortable rooms with kitchenettes are uniquely furnished. Have a cocktail in the buzzing rooftop bar with two plunge pools.

    21 rooms from $150
    Sights nearby  -  Close to Brisbane River and central Brisbane
    Restrictions on children  -  Must be over 18
    Lively  -  Hip and happening.
    Recommended by  -  Tablet
  • Royal Pines Resort

    Gold Coast (Benowa)

    Close to Surfers Paradise Beach is this resort with spacious double rooms, a spa, gym and tennis courts. Family friendly with adjoining rooms available and separate pool areas and slides for kids. Perfect for golf lovers as 27 hole course on site.

    331 rooms from $151
    Swimming Pool  -  Kids areas and slides
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
    Local markets  -  Good for local colour.
    Seaside  -  Ideal for a seaside holiday.
  • Spicers Balfour

    Brisbane (New Farm)

    This chic and stylish boutique hotel in Brisbane offers nine large, spacious contemporary rooms. The rooms are set around gardens and a courtyard. With a luxury spa and an in-hotel personalised service to match, this is the perfect place for both business and pleasure.

    9 rooms from $151
    Sights nearby  -  Only a 15 minute walk to Brisbane city centre
    Restrictions on children
    Local markets  -  Good for local colour.
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Fodors
  • Sheraton Mirage Gold Coast

    Gold Coast (Main Beach)

    Direct access to the beach, numerous swimming pools, and a spa and fitness centre are just some of the top facilities available at Gold Coast's only 5* hotel. Spacious & stylish rooms and suites many with sea views and great seafood buffet at Terraces Restaurant.

    295 rooms from $167
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor lap pool, outdoor heated pool and separate children's pool
    On the beach  -  Direct beach access
    Sailing  -  Can be booked nearby.
  • Mungumby Lodge

    Cooktown Cape York, Queensland

    Set in lush tropical gardens, this family owned and run hotel has bundles of charm. Ten wooden bungalows are minimal but authentically chic, and offer complete privacy. In a great situation for exploring Aboriginal art as well as the Great Barrier Reef. A great choice for families.

    10 rooms from $177
    Outstanding location  -  Located on northern edge of Mankal-Mangkalba National Park, borders famous Black Mountain (260 million year old rock formation)
    Swimming Pool  -  Outdoor pool overlooking the rainforest
    Great walks  -  To rainforest and deserted beaches
    Sights nearby  -  James Cook museum, Botanic Gardens
  • Palm Bay Resort

    Whitsunday Islands

    With a mesmerising location on Long Island, at the heart of the Whistsunday Islands, this resort offers luxurious self-catering accommodation. Modern amenities, including a kitchen and laundry facilities, are complimented by the light and airy rooms with stunning views.

    from $177
    On the beach  -  Private beachfront
    Barefoot Luxury  -  For total relaxation.
    Outstanding location
    Hideaway  -  Tranquil and intimate.
  • Lotusbird Lodge


    Situated on a billabong six hours north of Cairns on the Cape York peninsula, this lodge is set in a tropical wildlife haven, with over 200 species of birds in the area. Ten simple yet comfortable, wooden cabins have private bathrooms and verandas. Ideal for an inexpensive outback adventure.

    10 rooms from $183
    Birdwatching  -  Over 200 species of birds
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
    Outstanding location
    Hideaway  -  Tranquil and intimate.
  • Heron Island

    Heron Island

    The location of this resort cannot be beaten - Heron Island is a World Heritage listed site surrounded by coral reef, and a wildlife haven. Guests are invited to switch off from the outside world (there's no internet or tv in the luxurious rooms) and explore this breathtakingly beautiful place.

    109 rooms from $188
    Great walks  -  Free guided reef walks, island ecology walks and bridlife walks
    Outstanding location  -  Island is surrounded by a reef
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Secluded setting  -  For escaping.
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
  • Silky Oaks Lodge


    Luxury eco lodge on the banks of the Mossman River. Accommodation in stunning treehouses, suites and a riverhouse. Elegant interiors with hardwood floors, sumptuous en suites and verandahs overlooking the rainforest. Delicious food in the Treehouse Restaurant, and Healing Waters Spa for chilling.

    38 rooms from $244
    Outstanding location  -  Set in 88 acres of rainforest on the edge of Daintree National Park
    Restrictions on children  -  Must be 12 or over
    Great walks  -  Rainforest walks
    Full of character
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
  • Palazzo Versace

    Gold Coast (Main Beach)

    If you're not au fait with Italian fashion house Versace, you will be after a stay in this luxe hotel where all the furnishings come from their home collection. With huge rooms and top amenities including Australia's only water salon, the result is a purely indulgent hotel experience.

    200 rooms from $258
    Sailing  -  The hotel has a private marina
    Spa  -  Top notch Aurora Spa
    Designer  -  Versace furnishings
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Fodors
  • Peppers Ruffles Lodge and Spa

    Gold Coast (Willow Vale)

    Set high in the Gold Coast Hinterland, this luxury hotel offers a range of suites and villas with magnificent views out to sea or over Tambourine Mountain. An infinity pool, deluxe spa and three acre garden ensure a peaceful and intimate experience.

    12 rooms from $283
    Views  -  Stunning views out to sea from its perch in the Gold Coast Hinterland
    Great walks  -  There is a one km walking track around the lodge plus longer trails in the Eucalyptus forest.
    Spa  -  Ruffles Day Spa offering a wide range of treatments.
    Swimming Pool  -  Outdoor infinity pool with poolside bar
  • Haggerstone Island

    Haggerstone Island

    Roy and Anna Turner have spent twenty years creating the ultimate barefoot luxury resort. There are four huts built with local materials set along the beach of this stunning island, and all food is grown or caught on the island, and freshly prepared. A once in a lifetime experience.

    from $475
    Diving  -  1840s shipwreck nearby
    Barefoot Luxury  -  For total relaxation.
    Outstanding location
    Full of character
  • One&Only Hayman Island

    Whitsunday Islands

    This five by three mile private Whitsunday island is a tropical oasis of pristine white beaches and turquoise water. The only resort on the island offers luxurious rooms, suites, villas and penthouses each with a balcony or breathtaking sea view, and is the ultimate place to unwind.

    160 rooms from $478
    Views  -  Out to the reef
    Back to Nature
    Kids Club  -  Fully staffed.
    Birdwatching  -  Good birding near the hotel.
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Fodors, Mr & Mrs Smith
  • Hamilton Island Yacht Club Villas

    Whitsunday Islands

    These luxury self-contained villas have breath-taking views towards the Whitsunday Islands. Each beachfront Villa comes with four ensuite bedrooms, a kitchen and laundry facilities. Close to Hamilton Island marina, they're the ideal set up for families and larger groups.

    from $586
    Family Suites
    Swimming Pool  -  Waterfront lagoon pool surrounded by a tropical garden.
    Diving  -  Access to the Great Barrier Reef.
    Recommended by  -  Mr & Mrs Smith
  • Qualia

    Hamilton Island, Whitsunday Islands

    Explore the Great Barrier Reef from this stylish resort offering the ultimate private beachside experience. Breathtaking views, spa treatments, a fully stocked library and more - an island paradise.

    60 rooms from $656
    Swimming Pool  -  Private pools in some Pavilions
    Views  -  Each Pavilion has a searoom
    Restrictions on children  -  Must be 16 or over
    Back to Nature
    Recommended by  -  Tablet, Fodors, Mr & Mrs Smith
  • Spicers Peak Lodge


    With a setting to die for in Queensland's Scenic Rim, this luxury lodge offers suites and private villas for the ultimate retreat. There's an award winning restaurant, top notch spa, swimming pool & tennis court. Plus 4wd tours, guided eco tours and helicopter flights.

    12 rooms from $688
    Spa  -  Spa Anise offers a luxurious range of massages, treatments, body wraps, facials and couples sessions
    Private Hot Tub  -  Book one of the lodges for your own private infinity spa pool or hot tub
    Swimming Pool  -  Private lodges with outdoor infinity spa pools
    Views  -  Stunning views over Scenic Rim
    Recommended by  -  Mr & Mrs Smith, Fodors
  • Bedarra Island Resort

    Misson Beach, Bedarra Island

    Eight stunning villas nestled in the rainforest and looking out to the beach on this beautiful tropical island off the Queensland coast. Emphasis on sustainability. The ultimate place for barefoot luxury and relaxation.

    from $718
    Great walks  -  Self guided interactive walks through rain forest
    Restrictions on children  -  Must be 16 or over
    Kayaking  -  Sea Kayaks
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Recommended by  -  Fodors
  • Crystalbrook Lodge


    A luxurious haven in the midst of rugged Queensland outback. This lodge offers five suites with style, comfort and privacy, as well as stunning lakeside views. Local, fresh cuisine, an honesty bar and glorious infinity pool complete the experience.

    5 rooms from $1121
    Swimming Pool  -  Spectacular outdoor infinity pool overlooking the lake
    Fishing  -  Heli-fishing and guides available
    Great walks  -  Lakeside trail walks
    Outstanding location
Your shortlist (0)