Rainbow Beach

A pleasant, quiet holiday spot with a wonderful wide strip of beach. The small town serves as a gateway to Fraser Island to the north, and Cooloola National Park.

Location: 260 km north of Brisbane.

Cooloola Recreation Area

Part of Great Sandy National Park, a vast coastal national park, it features untouched beaches, large sand dunes, heathlands, rainforests, swamps, creeks, freshwater lakes and mangrove forests. Cooloola Recreation Area is situated on the coast between Noosa Heads in the south and Rainbow Beach in the north and covers 184,00 ha.

Cooloola Great Walk

A five-day hiking trail, showcases the very best of the Cooloola Recreation Area's outstanding natural attractions. Up to 102 km long, this extensive walking track system winds through rainforest, tall eucalypt forest, dry coastal woodland and heath plains.


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Brief history

Rainbow Beach was gazetted as late as 1969 when it was established to service the local sand mining industry. Until that time there was no road to Rainbow Beach, with the only access being via boat from Tin Can Bay. Sand mining ceased in 1976.

Origin of name: Originally known as Back Beach, Rainbow Beach was renamed after the coloured sands located near the town

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