Magnetic Island is a tropical paradise located off the coast of Queensland, Australia, known for its beautiful beaches and stunning natural scenery. While the island's natural beauty gives plenty of charm, it's also home to a vibrant food and drink scene in peak season, as well as unique and comfortable places to stay. So, don't miss out on experiencing the best our island has to offer, check out our range of transport options too!
EAT & Drink
These are our restaurant recommendations on the island that reflect our personal recommendations and ones which we eat in on a regular basis.
Saltwater Magnetic Island - Modern Australian Seafood restaurant in the heart of Nelly Bay. Open Wednesday’s to Sunday’s. Bookings essential. BYO only. 0414 352 762
Scallywags Cafe - Casual pirate themed cafe which is great for breakfast and does amazing burgers for lunch. Bookings not required. Open 8am to 2pm daily.
Granite - Cocktails, tapas and pizzas. A great place to unwind at the end of the day. Bookings recommended. Also during the day they sell great bread, cakes and pies in their kiosk.
Stuffed on Seafood - Casual seafood restaurant, Booking not required unless a large group. Licensed.
Magnetic Island Brewery - Highly recommended. Great beers with a special one on rotation. Check the days they open.
Mamma Roma - fresh and authentic Italian, sometimes have live music playing on the weekends. Check their facebook page for details. BYO. Open from 5pm for dinner. Bookings essential (07) 4778 5456
The Reef Bar Cafe - Great breakfasts and lunches. Tuesday to Sunday from 12 till 2 pm and on Friday night 5.30 till 8 pm.BYO. Bookings recommended. (07) 4758 1477
Stage Door Theatre Restaurant - Cheesy but brilliant. You'll laugh, you'll sing and you'll have a super fun night out. Three course dinner and a show! Bookings essential. (07) 4778 5448
Aqua in Arcadia- Fantastic restaurant offering breakfast and lunch from Thursday to Sunday. Lovely garden setting with great quality food. (07) 4778 5029
The Early Bird - great spot for Breakfast or Lunch next to Horseshoe Bay beach. Bookings not required.
Cafe Nourish - healthy breakies and lunches. Bookings not required.
Barefoot Art Food Wine - the fine dining option in Horseshoe Bay. Good for lunch or dinner. Combines an art gallery and a restaurant. Bookings recommended. (07) 4758 1170
Magnetic Island has a wide range of accommodation to suit any budget and taste. Most are self-catering accommodation with only a couple of the resort style properties with an in-house restaurant. And out of the resort-style properties, Peppers is our pick as it’s in a very convenient location next to the marina, ferry & bus terminal. It has two great pools and a restaurant.
Best of Magnetic has the largest portfolio of properties which suit a range of tastes and group sizes. Here are a few of our favourites which are available on Best of Magnetic unless specified.
For Large Groups:
Magnetic Island has 23 bays and beaches to explore and nearly 25 kilometres of walking tracks meandering through the national parks. Listed below are the best methods of transport to ensure you see the best of our Island during your stay
By Foot: Select one of the beautiful walking tracks on the island. There are walks of all length and difficulty. Our favourites are The Forts Walk and Hawkins Point. Check out more information on the National Parks website.
By Car: Hire a open top car and cruise the island with the wind in your hair. Our recommended car hire companies are Isle Hire, who hire the classy convertible minis and the topless cars or MI Rentals with their funky jeeps and a range of other cars too.
By Boat: Obviously our preference! There are many beaches on the island which are only accessible by boat. Pilgrim Sailing and Pilgrim Adventures should have you covered here.
Here are some other businesses who offer slightly different experiences on the water:
For families with young kids we'd recommend Aquascene. Adam and Steph, the owners have lived on the island over 30 years and know all the special spots. They run half day tours where you can snorkel, fish and explore...
For the diving enthusiasts, book in with Adrenalin Dive for a trip to the outer reef for a Dive or a Snorkel. Highlights in the region are the SS Yongala, one of the top 10 dive sites in the world and the new Museum of Underwater Art.
The Museum of Underwater Art features a dive site, The Coral Greenhouse and a snorkel site, The Ocean Sentinels. The Coral Greenhouse is a groundbreaking underwater museum at John Brewer Reef, 30 nautical miles north-west of Magnetic island, which was created by Jason deCaires Taylor a world-renowned underwater artist. It combines marine science, coral gardening, and environmental art and architecture to offer a fresh perspective on the Great Barrier Reef and its ecology. In June 2023, a new snorkel trail at the same location featuring Ocean Sentinels, which is a collection of sculptures that blend human figures with natural marine forms. These sculptures represent influential Australians who have made significant contributions to marine science and conservation.
If you’re looking for a fishing charter, contact Dom from Horseshoe Bay Fishing Charters.
For fast and furious look no further than Jetski Hire Magnetic Island for the largest jet ski area on the east coast of Australia or Magnetic Jet who do guided jetski tours around the island.
Alternatively if you’re looking for something a bit slower, jump on a kayak with Magnetic Island Sea Kayaks for a sunset or morning tour.
Magnetic Island offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, delicious cuisine, and comfortable accommodation that make for an unforgettable island experience. With so many options for food, drink, and sleep, you can truly indulge in the best that the island has to offer.