Hervey Bay is a prominent city in Queensland. This city lies roughly 290 kilometres away from Brisbane which is the state capital. This is a naturally formed bay between the Fraser Island and Queensland Mainland. The local economy of the city mainly relies on tourism above all else. The entire tourism circuit in this city mainly centres on whale watching in Platypus Bay in the northern parts, Fraser Island, recreational fishing, boating and some lovely beaches with undeveloped foreshore zones. These are some of the biggest growth drivers of the tourism industry in the city. The population of the city is approximately 50, 000 and it has witnessed high growth in this regard. The city is originally home to the indigenous Butculla people and James Cook was the first explorer to set his sights on this city and he named it after the naval officer Augustus John Hervey who was also a Lord of the Admiralty and the Third Earl of Bristol.
Till the 1980s, the city was mainly serviced by the Main North Coast railway line that witnessed a diversion from Aldershot and passed through Walligan, Takura, Pialba, Nikenbah and Urangan among other areas. This was a major hub for freight transportation for the Maryborough Port and also for the sugar cane industry. Road transportation was yet to take over during this time and it is today the major transportation medium for industries in the city. The city was officially called the City of Hervey Bay till 1984. This is usually known as a city owing to its successful local economy, thriving tourism sector and industrial progress. This is a quaint yet bustling city that has been drawing tourists in droves over the last few years. The city is home to several top class heritage sites including Woody Island Lighthouses & Ancillary Building Site and Fraser Island, both of which are huge attractions for visitors.
Hervey Bay lays around 3 and a half hour away from Brisbane through the Bruce Highway while Maryborough lies around half an hour away from it. The high speed Tilt Train also serves the city along with the Hervey Bay Airport which offers direct flights to Sydney through Virgin Australia or Brisbane through Qantas. Hervey Bay is also slated to get an improved airport master plan which stipulates the construction of a taxiway running parallel to the central runway and a bigger terminal. The passenger ferry service also runs till Fraser Island and other places. This is also a major source of transportation in the city. The railway line is still a major transportation lifeline for residents of the city and has been maintained carefully by the authorities.
Hervey Bay essentially encompasses several communities and villages which have now taken precedence as its suburbs and outskirts. The city comprises of places like Pialba, Urangan, Eli Waters, Dundowran, Scarness, Point Vernon, Urraween, Wondunna, Takura, Kawungan, Dundowran Beach, Torquay and more. There are several townships that lie outside the city including Aldershot, Burrum heads, Booral, Howard, Craignish and River Heads among many others. There are several leading schools in Hervey Bay including the Kawungan Preschool, Urangan Point Preschool, Yarilee Preschool, Kawungan State School, Pialba State School, Torquay State School, Hervey Bay State High School and the Urangan State High School among others. Higher education institutions in the city include the Fraser Coast Anglican College, Xavier Catholic College, St James Lutheran College, Hervey Bay Christian Academy, Wide Bay Institute of TAFE and the University of Southern Queensland campus.
There are several sporting and recreational attractions for visitors. The natural foreshore area possesses a 14 kilometre long pedestrian and bike path that merges recreational fitness into the community and environment. There are several competitive sports that are popular in the city and are played against neighbouring cities like Maryborough, Gympie and Bundaberg. The lovely waters and beaches are hotbeds for these competitions in disciplines like kite boarding, sailing, wake boarding, water skiing, out-rigging, kayaking, scuba diving, snorkelling and ocean swimming among others. The Hervey Bay Triathlon started in the year 1988 and has been annually held ever since. The local rugby league team is called the Hervey Bay Seagulls and is very popular amongst locals in the area.
As mentioned, whale watching is a popular activity in this city. Rather, it is often referred to as the whale watching capital of the entire country. Several humpback whales migrate to the coast of Hervey Bay between the months of April and October each year. There are several studies that have been conducted by Oceania Project researchers over 14 years which found the bay to be a social hub for these rare humpback whales. The number of whales has gone up from 2, 000 in the year 1992 to approximately 7, 000 and more in recent times. This city is the resting place for these humpback whales, calves and mums. The bay is where these whales refuel, recharge and build energy for their arduous journeys back all the way to Antarctica. The adults often play and socialize amongst themselves as has been observed at the bay and are usually relaxed while whale watching tours are conducted.
As can be seen, Hervey Bay is a popular hotspot for tourists who love nature and the sea equally. Hervey Bay offers several attractions and activities to visitors all throughout the year along with several diverse activities like whale watching. The latter is one of the most unique and fulfilling experiences that you can have in the whole of Australia. If you're into competitive sports and other activities, you will enjoy the wide range of facilities for tourists and surfers on the beaches at Hervey Bay. Additionally, you can get your fill of the city's natural exploration zones and other trails. From fitness to good food and ample adventure, Hervey Bay is but a normal choice for tourists wishing to unwind amidst nature's bounties. Hervey Bay automatically makes it to the travel calendar for most tourists visiting Australia throughout the year and particularly during the whale watching season.