Discover Reef HQ and the Turtle Hospital

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The world’s largest living coral reef aquarium – Reef HQ

Queensland is home to the worlds largest living coral reef aquarium where you can experience the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef without needing a boat. Reef HQ is located on Flinders Street, Townsville and features a 2.5 million litre coral reef exhibit and a turtle hospital that cares for sick and injured sea turtles.


About Reef HQ.

Reef HQ, as it’s known today was opened on June 24, 1987 and has previously been known as The Great Barrier Reef Aquarium and Great Barrier Reef Wonderland.

Reef HQ was created from the vision of Dr Graeme Kelleher who aimed to create the Great Barrier Reef on land so it can be accessible to everyone and also gain public support and spread a reef conservation message. Dr Kelleher is a former chairman of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA).

The aquarium is open every day from 9:30 am till 5:00 pm (Except for some public holidays). Reef HQ recommend visitors set aside two – two and a half hours to fully experience the reef.

Pricing is very reasonable with adult tickets for $28 and family passes for $70. Click here to view all the pricing information and details about memberships.

Things to do.

Your day will be busy at Reef HQ with the many activities available including:

  • The Predator Dive Show.
  • Discovery Lagoon Session.
  • Turtle Talk.
  • Shark Feeding Show.
  • Animal feeding Tour.

Times and days vary between activities. Click here to find out more.

Reef HQ Aquarium

Turtle Hospital.

Reef HQ has a dedicated turtle hospital where they care for and rehabilitate sick and injured marine turtles. The turtle hospital was officially opened by the honourable Peter Garrett AM MP, Minister for Environment Protection Heritage and the Arts on the 24th of August 2009.

Marine turtles face many threats in the wild including fishing lines/nets, being struck by boats and general litter/plastic.

You can help protect marine turtles by ensuring you take home all your fishing gear, operating boats slowly and carefully, not disposing of litter in the ocean and generally reducing your use of plastics.

If you come across injured or stranded marine life call the Queensland Government Wildlife Hotline on 1300 130 372.

Would you like to directly help the Reef HQ turtle hospital? You can donate directly to them by visiting the Reef HQ Turtle Hospital ‘MyCause’ website or by contacting Reef HQ on 4750 0800.


Find out more about Reef HQ.

If you would like to find out more about Reef HQ:

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