When the party’s over Midsumma, Mardi Gras and ChillOut revellers traditionally head north to wash off the glitter, as SCOTT ABRAHAMS reports.

As Queensland continues it massive clean-up, Mardi Gras revellers have a unique opportunity to help not only the state’s recovery, but their own.

Not only do our brothers and sisters in the Sunshine State need our cash donations, their business could do with a boost as well.

Given the state’s historic popularity as a Mardi Gras recovery location, there’s never been a better time to head north when the party’s over.

For more than a decade Turtle Cove has been one of the more popular recovery zones, so much so that the resort — which is a 40-minute drive north of Cairns — puts together a week of recovery events to cater for the vast numbers of people seeking to wash off the glitter in the surf.

“Turtle Cove attracts people to the recovery party because of its beachfront location, spectacular weather and friendly atmosphere,” resort marketing manager Jacob Banks said.

“You can either continue to party on or just laze by the pool, relax and recharge your batteries, the choice is yours.”

Turtle Cove is ideally located for those wanting a tropical north Queensland experience. It is close to Cairns, the Daintree rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef.

“We always recommend our guests visit the Great Barrier Reef as it is one of the best snorkelling and diving locations in the world,” Banks said.

“We also recommend the incredible tropical Daintree rainforest. Both of these areas are World Heritage-listed locations and must be seen to be believed.

“The entire tropical far north Queensland is teeming with fabulous things to see and do, like massive waterfalls, barramundi fishing and visiting a crocodile farm.”

For those wanting to extend the recovery period and take in more of the great weather of the north, there are plenty of other spots to head to after your week at Turtle Cove.

Why not try the Whitsundays — one of the few places left on earth where you can escape. There are no crowds, clean beaches and the aquamarine waters of the Whitsunday Passage are one of the world’s best year-round aquatic playgrounds.

Airlie Beach is the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands, which are all within 50km of Shute Harbour. Of the 74 islands, seven have resorts while camping is permitted on many. Try skippering your own boat or join a crewed tour.

If life’s a beach, then the Sunshine Coast’s the life. Surf beaches, top restaurants, a charming hinterland and access to World Heritage Fraser Island make it the perfect place to unwind.

In fact for many years Noosa and the Sunshine Coast was the place to recover.

From Caloundra to Fraser Island, through the surfside towns of Maroochydore, Mooloolaba, Coolum and Noosa, and the villages of the Glasshouse Mountains, the Blackall Ranges and Eumundi, there’s lots for the more adventurous to take in while the more sedate reveller can just sit back and relax in the sun.

Those looking for something more commercial should also consider the Gold Coast.

No longer just the domain of end-of-year school leavers, the Gold Coast is rapidly upping its cultural content, and of course still offers some amazing theme parks, shopping and a casino.

You can fly direct into Coolangatta and grab a bus or cab to one of the many beachfront hotels that can become your base for a recovery that can include options as diverse as golden surf beaches, a rainforest-clad mountain hinterland and chic shopping and dining.

For more on GLBTI-friendly travel options visit www.galta.com.au. To find out more about Turtle Cove, visit www.turtlecove.com.

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