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Townsville enjoys over 300 days of sunshine each year, which lends itself to tourism activities all year round and an abundance of outdoor activities. Popular attractions include 'The Strand', a long tropical beach and garden strip; Riverway, a riverfront parkland attraction located on the banks of Ross River; Reef HQ, a large tropical aquarium holding many of the Great Barrier Reef's native flora and fauna; the Museum of Tropical Queensland, built around a display of relics from the sunken British warship HMS Pandora; and Magnetic Island, a large neighboring island, the vast majority of which is national park.
Townsville can provide the ultimate tropical holiday. The area is unique because of the convergence of differing landscapes. With the Great Barrier Reef to its east, the city is bordered by pristine palm-lined beaches. A couple of hours drive to the west and you get to know what country life in Australia is all about. The dense rainforests and the beautiful islands near Mission Beach to the north and the sugarcane and mango farming communities to the south, complete the amazing and diverse picture that one associates with holidays in Queensland.
Shops and services are generally open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and until lunchtime on Saturday. In cities and larger towns, many shops stay open late on Thursday or Friday evening - usually until 9pm - and all day on Saturday. Shopping malls are often open on Sundays as well.
In remote country areas, roadhouses provide all the essential services for the traveler and, on the major highways, are generally open 24 hours a day. In tourist areas, even ones well off the beaten track, tourist offices are often open every day or at least through the week plus weekend mornings; urban information centers are more likely to conform to normal shopping hours.
Tourist attractions such as museums, galleries and attended historic monuments, are often open daily, though those in rural communities may have erratic opening hours.
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