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Castle Hill
Vacation Travel Guide

Catch the sea breezes on this pink granite landmark in the city’s heart and enjoy 360-degree views of the city’s harbor and across to Magnetic Island.

Castle Hill is the pink granite outcrop that has been a prominent Townsville icon since the town was built in its foothills. As seen from below, the colored hill is an impressive sight, especially at sunrise and sunset when its deepening pink hues make the monolith look spectacular. Stand on its summit for unrivaled views of the region, with Magnetic Island across the bay and the Ross River meandering through the suburbs below and spilling out into Cleveland Bay.

At 938 feet (286 meters), Castle Hill falls just short of making this monolith a mountain. It was known to the Aborigines as Cutheringa. In 1864, during early European exploration of the Ross River area, Andrew Ball named it Castle Hill. To save its vegetation, much of Castle Hill was declared a reserve in 1888.

Facing the northern cliff face from below, look up to see a large graffiti. The Saint is the lasting result of a 1962 prank by students of the local James Cook University. On the northern-most peak of the three-peaked summit is a 1942 bunker that served as an observation post during World War II.

Dotted with water reservoirs and radio communications installations, the hill still serves the town in more than one way, although its main use remains that of a recreation reserve. You can potentially find 300 plant species and 50 bird species on the hill, including nesting peregrine falcons and brahminy kites. Also look for rock wallabies, which can often be seen hopping around.

Head to the summit at your own leisure to familiarize yourself with the town. Many locals use the tracks for their daily exercise, especially the Goat Track, leading from the lower northern slopes to the top of the cliffs. The Summit Walk has a steep set of stairs, if you’re keen to get in shape.

Drivers can follow winding Castle Hill Road to the summit of the second peak. To the east, view the pink granite bluffs overlooking The Strand, the city’s bustling foreshore. See the nearby stone monument for Robert Towns, the city’s founder. Come here just before sunset and bring a picnic or takeout with you, to see a sea of lights come on over the town as you dine.

Castle Hill is located just above downtown Townsville and has many access point. Facilities include parking spaces, public toilets, water fountains and shaded benches.

Top things to do in Castle Hill

Top Hotels Close to Castle Hill

Madison Plaza Townsville
Madison Plaza Townsville
4 out of 5
409 Flinders St., Corner Of Stanley And Flinders St., Townsville, QLD
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $57 per night from May 1 to May 2

Located in the heart of Townsville, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Catholic Diocese of Townsville and Castle Hill. Townsville Entertainment & Convention ...

3.8/5Good! (966 reviews)

"Great central location. Close to supermarket and eateries."…"

Reviewed on Mar 29, 2021

Madison Plaza Townsville
Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
4.5 out of 5
334 Flinders Street, Townsville, QLD
The price is $90 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26

Located in the heart of Townsville, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Perc Tucker Regional Gallery and Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal. Maritime Museum ...

4.3/5Excellent! (634 reviews)

"The friend welcome and the fact that the staff remember my name and my preferences... ie new TV.... they even remembered that I prefer milk chocolate over dark chocolate for the lovely welcome gift is a wonderful touch. The Papuan lady on reception is just delightful, she always remembers me. I’m ..."…"

Reviewed on Apr 1, 2021

Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
Aquarius on the Beach
Aquarius on the Beach
4 out of 5
75 The Strand, North Ward, QLD
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With direct access to the beach, this North Ward hotel is on the boardwalk and within 1 mi (2 km) of Strand Park, Castle Hill, and Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal. ...

4.2/5Excellent! (978 reviews)

"Excellent location. Could not keep the balcony doo open."…"

Reviewed on Apr 10, 2021

Aquarius on the Beach
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Castle Hill

Madison Plaza Townsville
Madison Plaza Townsville
4 out of 5
409 Flinders St., Corner Of Stanley And Flinders St., Townsville, QLD
The price is $57 per night from May 1 to May 2
Madison Plaza Townsville
Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
4.5 out of 5
334 Flinders Street, Townsville, QLD
The price is $90 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
Aquarius on the Beach
Aquarius on the Beach
4 out of 5
75 The Strand, North Ward, QLD
Aquarius on the Beach
The Robert Towns
The Robert Towns
4 out of 5
261 Stanley Street, Townsville, QLD
The price is $61 per night from Apr 21 to Apr 22
The Robert Towns
The Ville Resort - Casino
The Ville Resort - Casino
4.5 out of 5
Sir Leslie Thiess Drive, Townsville, QLD
The price is $119 per night from May 9 to May 10
The Ville Resort - Casino
Grand Hotel and Apartments Townsville
Grand Hotel and Apartments Townsville
4.5 out of 5
8-10 Palmer Street, South Townsville, QLD
The price is $96 per night from Apr 16 to Apr 17
Grand Hotel and Apartments Townsville
City Oasis Inn
City Oasis Inn
4 out of 5
143 Wills Street, Townsville, QLD
The price is $80 per night from Apr 20 to Apr 21
City Oasis Inn
Cabin Sky Glorious Views Magnetic Island
Cabin Sky Glorious Views Magnetic Island
3 out of 5
32 Stanton Terrace, North Ward, QLD
Cabin Sky Glorious Views Magnetic Island
Oaks Townsville Gateway Suites
Oaks Townsville Gateway Suites
4.5 out of 5
2 Dibbs Street, South Townsville, QLD
The price is $110 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Oaks Townsville Gateway Suites
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.