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Magnetic Island Sunset Locations You Won’t Want to Miss

Magnetic Island Sunset Locations You Won’t Want to Miss

A quick guide to the best sunset locations on Magnetic Island off Townsville, Queensland. Find out where to enjoy the best sundowners on this epic little island paradise!

Just a quick boat ride from Townsville, Magnetic Island has you covered for tropical island sunsets. But, where are the best Magnetic Island sunset locations? In this guide, I’ll outline all of the best spots to go to wind up your day on Magnetic Island.

I’ve also written a comprehensive guide to the best things to do on Magnetic Island based on my experience, so go check that one out too for more inspiration!

Magnetic island sunset spot backflip
Olly gaspar

By Olly Gaspar, full-time traveler & adventure photographer for 6 years with 700+ published travel guides. I visit every place I write about & share real tips from what I learn.

How to Get to Magnetic Island

Getting to Magnetic Island is as easy as a 20-minute ferry ride from the coast of Townsville, operating daily.

The best ferry company is SeaLink, which has ferries operating roughly every hour from Townsville to Nelly Bay ferry terminal on Magnetic Island.

The cheapest SeaLink ticket can be booked online in advance on GetYourGuide, which gives you a scannable QR code to use on your phone when you board. The cost for the return trip to Magnetic Island on SeaLink is $40.50 per adult with some concession options available.

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Magnetic island sunset

Magnetic Island Sunset Locations

I'm sure that the sunset will be epic wherever you decide to watch it on Magnetic Island. But, if you're looking for the best places to catch snaps of the Magnetic Island sunset, consider the spots below.

1. Horseshoe Bay

Horseshoe Bay is located on the Northern end of Magnetic Island and is the island hotspot for jet skiing and kayaking. It's also one of the best places on the island to catch the sunset.

In the drier months, the sun will set right next to the western headland, casting its colours and light across the bay. There are usually also plenty of sailing boats cruising through, which make for some epic pictures.

Magnetic island sunsets at horseshoe bay

2. The Magnetic Island Wreck Viewpoint at Cockle Bay

An epic viewpoint spot on the south side of Magnetic Island is a secret local lookout known as Sail Rock.

From here, the sun will set across the island and light the sky up around the bays. What's best about this sunset location is that you'll most likely have it to yourself.

This spot is located on a hill overlooking both Cockle Bay and Picnic Bay. You can even get a distant view of the famous SS City of Adelaide Wreck, a great spot to catch that magical Magnetic Island sunset.

Magnetic island viewpoint sail rock
Magnetic island wreck cockle bay ss adelade drone photo

3. The Forts

The Forts are one of the more popular hikes or bushwalks on Magnetic Island, but for good reason.

The walk starts at the Forts carpark on Horshoe Bay Road. It then continues up the mountain to some historic World War II war fortifications.

There are plenty of places to stop and watch the sunset over the bays. However, my personal favourite Magnetic Island sunset location is on the upper fort. This will reward you with 360 panoramic views over the island, and you can watch the sunset perfectly behind the headland at Horseshoe Bay.

While you're on the walk, make sure to keep an eye out for wild koalas, as the Forts walk is one of the best places to spot them in Queensland.

Magnetic island koalas on the forts walk
Forts walk koalas on magnetic island

4. Radical Bay

If you want a more secluded bay to watch the tropical island sunsets on the water, then Radical Bay would be a great option.

Radical Bay is only a short walk from Horseshoe Bay, following a 20-minute track from the East side of the beach.

Another alternative close to Radical Bay is Balding Bay. However, keep in mind that it is a nudist beach, so probably best to not bring a camera.

If you're wondering how to get to Radical Bay and surrounding bays, then you can read the full blog post below.

Read More: How to Get to Florence Bay and Surrounding Hikes

Magnetic island sunsets at the bay track

What Time is Sunset on Magnetic Island?

The answer is that it varies depending on the season.

In the wetter, summer months, the sun usually rises at 5:30 AM and sets at 6:30 PM. In the busier winter months, also known as the dry season, the sun rises at 6:40 AM and goes down at 5:30 PM.

To get accurate Magnetic Island sunset and sunrise times, check out the WillyWeather forecast.

Magnetic island sunsets at horseshoe bay
Magnetic island sunset palms at horseshoe bay
Horseshoe bay sunset view
Koala mum and baby in kuranda, australia

1. Selina Magnetic Island Top-Pick

This is one of the best-rated accommodation options on Magnetic Island. It has a good chill-out area, pool, yoga an option to sleep on a converted bus, and on-site koala tours.

Nomads magnetic island accommodation on the beach

2. Nomads Magnetic Island

This hostel offers shared rooms and private rooms. Rooms are small cottages that overlook the reef right on the water's edge in Nelly Bay.

Double bedroom at cstay in picnic bay on magnetic island, australia

3. CStay

One of the best value accommodation options for couples is CStay in Picnic Bay. There are several twin rooms available with an outdoor pool. It is located close to public transport and walking distance to many restaurants.

More Adventures on Maggie and Queensland

I hope that you enjoyed this quick guide to catching the best spots for sunset on Magnetic Island. While you're here, why not check out some of my other adventure and travel guides around Queensland? Below are a few to start!

Best sunset spots magnetic island
Thanks for Reading

I'm Olly Gaspar, adventure travel journalist & photographer. Traveling non-stop since 2018, I've published over 700 travel guides on We Seek Travel. These draw on my personal experience to share unique itineraries, accommodation tips, & fun adventure guides covering hikes, viewpoints, beaches, waterfalls, & tours. Read my Publishing Ethics Statement.

Your feedback & updates are crucial to keep my guides factual & current. Got new info or updates? Drop a comment below or contact me directly.

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