The City of Hervey Bay is about 290 kilometres north of Brisbane. The city is located in a natural bay that provides access to Fraser Island, a famous tourist attraction in Australia. Hervey Bay also provides access to Platypus Bay, where tourists arrive from all parts of Australia to do whale watching. Some of the activities available to tourists and residents alike are boating, fishing and swimming at the beach. The district thrives on tourism and it is especially popular amongst backpackers and independent travellers, who along with most residents consider the area to be a seaside village. Hervey Bay officially became a city in 1984 with an increase in population growth rate, along with a boom in businesses and industries.