There's nothing worse than stage fright – especially on Valentine's Day. So if privacy tops your Valentine's wish list, then Queensland has just the place to release your inner love god; all away from prying eyes. P.S. don't worry about packing big – you won't need much at some of these Sunshine State hot spots.
1. Rent an entire tropical island for less than $2,000Why settle for a beach for two when you can have an entire tropical island? Pumpkin Island, off the coast of Yeppoon on the Southern Great Barrier Reef, becomes Cupid for the modern-day Casanova. You get a private island for as long as your heart desires (and the bank balance allows), harvest-fresh oysters (direct from the rocks at low tide) and a nightly display of romance by sunset while bobbing around in a private plunge pool. Could this be the backdrop for a proposal?
2. Sail into love…Charter your own Love Boat and sail into the sunset for some luvin' on the high seas. The Whitsundays' is home to 74 islands, countless calm coves and well-hidden beaches to anchor and explore. Play Captain Stubing and go it alone, or hire a skipper (and even a chef) to guide you on your romantic way.
3. Ultimate beach picnicUp your beach picnic game and chopper your significant other to a remote stretch of sand in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef. Our pick for loved-up picnic action is Vlasoff Cay. Surrounded by coral gardens and azure blue water, this is THE place to get down on one knee. Just ask the pilot to discretely disappear to the other side of the chopper. GBR Helicopters can get you there from Cairns or Port Douglas for a two-hour sojourn for just $899 per person.
4. Castle in the rainforestIn need of some romantic inspiration? Travel 90 minutes south of Cairns to Mena Creek Falls near Innisfail, where the rainforest reveals the ruins of a 90-year-old castle built by Spanish immigrant, Jose Paronella, as a monument for his intended back home. Between all the hard yakka to raise funds (Mr Paronella bought and sold cane farms) and plan his edifice Jose, kind of forgot to tell his squeeze of his undying love. By the time he returned to Spain 11 years later, Matilda had already moved on and married someone else! Fortunately, little sister Margarita was single and thus began one of Australia's greatest love stories, the construction of a Catalan castle in Queensland, and a joyous match that lasted through until Jose's death in 1948.
Dalliers take heed. Get inspired by Australia's own Shah Jahan (the Moghul who built the Taj Mahal) and express your love under the lush avenue of Kauris at Paronella Park. Careful gents, your plus-one may expect their own castle after hearing about this hopeless romantic.
5. Get your kit offQueensland is famous for its glorious sunshine and what better place to go the whole hog and work on your all-over tan than a clothing optional Queensland escape. Feel the wind on your… ahem at Turtle Cove Resort in Tropical North Queensland or Taylor Wood Resort in the Whitsundays and get to know your valentine (warts and all). Fun fact: TV host Edwina Bartholomew did a live TV weather cross for Sunrise from Taylor Wood Resort in nothing but a smile.
W: http://turtlecove.com/ and http://www.taylorwoodresort.com.
6. Lovers of the bushNothing stirs emotion and beauty like Australia's Outback – thanks to Hugh Jackman and that unforgettable scene from the movie Australia. Re-create your own self-dousing bucket backdrop at Gilberton Outback Retreat's five-star hut. Run the bath and settle in for a glorious Outback Queensland sunset before snuggling in to the outback-chic four-poster bed. Love birds looking for more action can go on a 4WD safari or an Aboriginal art tour.
Tourism and Events Queensland.