The world’s largest living coral reef aquarium is located on Queensland’s Tropical Far North coast in Townsville and serves as the ultimate way to experience the natural wonder of the Great Barrier Reef without getting wet.
Reef HQ is the National Reef Education Centre for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, which translates to mean that Reef HQ is designed to show off the best of the Great Barrier Reef and educate visitors about this marvelous ecosystem. Reef HQ opened in 1987 as the vision of Dr Graeme Keller, who wanted to make the reef both accessible and affordable in order to spread awareness of conservation and get public support in protecting the Great Barrier Reef.
Reef HQ showcases the rare and extraordinary features of the Great Barrier Reef—one of the world’s richest and most diverse ecosystems in the world. Alongside exhibits of the reef, Reef HQ is involved heavily in reef research programs and runs a turtle hospital to rehabilitate sick and injured turtles.
Reef HQ is located within easy walking distance from both Townsville’s CBD and the Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal in Townsville’s attraction precinct. It's open from 9:30 a.m.to 5 p.m. every day except Christmas. Entry costs $28 for adults and $14 for children up to 16. Reef HQ is fully wheelchair accessible, and it is recommended that visitors allot about two hours to explore the facility.