Why Queensland is the best place to be in Winter
TALK about a winter wonderland.
While a day at the beach is currently a dream for shivering southerners, it's just another day in paradise in Australia's best climate.
While parts of the state can expect cooler than average temperatures later in the week, in the southeast it's as if summer never left with the mercury hitting the mid-20s as ocean temps remain warm enough for a refreshing dip.
Queensland Tourism Industry Council CEO Daniel Gschwind said for many, the Sunshine State was at its most appealing in winter when southern states struggle to crack double digits on the thermometer.
"It's just spectacular," he said.
"It's hard not to be captivated by the beauty and the weather at this time of year, which is exactly why so many people from the southern states want to come here. If you had to be trapped anywhere at the moment, Queensland would have to be it."
Southern Cross University tourism professor Kevin Markwell said it was a phenomenon consistent with patterns around the world where those in colder climes headed for warmer weather in winter.
"Destinations lower in latitude, closer to the equator, that have warmer climates have been magnets for tourists from higher latitudes," he said, citing the large number of British and Northern Europeans who head to the Mediterranean to escape the continent's brutal winters, a trend repeated in North America where Florida, Mexico and the Caribbean become tourist Meccas in winter months.
"In Australia, we certainly see that movement north into Queensland with people from southern states escaping the cold and heading north."
Queensland Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the state's winter weather was the envy of shivering southerners unable to escape their dreary surrounds.
"Nothing sends a stronger message that we're 'good to go' than this amazing weather we're having at the moment," she said.
"It was fantastic to see on the weekend so many Queenslanders taking advantage of the weather by getting out and about, visiting our beaches, rainforests, national parks and attractions.
"As more attractions reopen and this weather keeps up, we hope to see Queenslanders getting behind our tourism industry and supporting local businesses."
On the Sunshine Coast, Matt Heath and his family have been making the most of the perfect beach conditions and weather.
"There's been some absolute cracker couple of days this past week." Mr Heath said.
"You know it is winter, but up here you just don't feel it, there's just nothing else like it in the country."
"It is just the best, you can have the sun nearly every day of the week and just go out with the kids, you just can't complain about it."
"I don't think my kids know what winter is really supposed to be like."
Originally published as Why Queensland is the best place to be in Winter