Visit and explore The Whitsundays
Nothing says you’re on holiday like a warm tropical climate, palm trees swaying in the breeze, and spectacular ocean views. If the idea of blue waters, island life, and unforgettable experiences smack-bang in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef floats your boat, then a trip to The Whitsundays in tropical North Queensland might be for you. The Bonza news? We’ll soon be flying direct to The Whitsundays twice a week!
Easily accessible from Whitsunday Coast Airport, The Whitsundays is a cluster of 74 islands located 55km off the coast of popular resort town Airlie Beach. Located a short 30-minute drive from the airport, Airlie Beach is the mainland hub and gateway to the Whitsunday islands and a popular base to explore the best the region has to offer. The town itself has a great mix of accommodation options to suit a backpacker budget through to those looking for a luxe escape. You’ll find palm-lined beaches, vibrant beachfront restaurants, parks for the family, local markets, and Airlie Beach Lagoon - a massive swimming pool right in the centre of town. Check out this 3 day itinerary to get your holiday juices flowing.
If you’re a thrill seeker, maybe ocean rafting, jet ski tours, sky diving, helicopter rides, speed boat or sailing tours are more your speed? Don’t forget the amazing underwater adventures that await via snorkelling or scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef. The Whitsundays has a plethora of tour operators to get your motor running. Did you know the Whitsundays is also known as a fishing mecca? With over 70 islands making up the Whitsundays, plus inland lakes on the mainland, you’ll be spoilt for choice when you throw in a line. Whatever your fishing style, you’ll enjoy luring in some of the 1500+ species that live within the Whitsundays and Great Barrier Reef waters. If you want to head out to the islands, Daydream Island is a popular family resort featuring a kids club and a living reef on site. If a more exclusive adult-only island escape is what you’re after then Hamilton Island, Hayman Island, and Long Island all provide accommodation suited for those looking for peace, tranquillity and maybe even a touch of romance.
Eat & Drink
Whether on the mainland or enjoying a bite to eat on an island paradise, you’re in for a treat! Airlie Beach favourite The Deck Restaurant is a popular spot with locals and tourists. Known for their use of fresh produce and hunger-busting breakfast favourites, it will set the whole family up for a day spent exploring the Great Barrier Reef. Seafood lover? Fish D’vine and Rum Bar in Airlie Beach is one of the region’s longest established restaurants renowned for their rum tastings coupled with local Coral Sea tiger prawns, chilli mud crab and D’vine Poke Bowl. Don’t forget to add this Airlie institution to your itinerary! Fan favourites across The Whitsunday Islands also include Pebble Beach, One Tree Hill Bar, Bommie, Beach Club Restaurant, Mariners Restaurant, and Sails to name just a few. Check out TripAdvisors top spots here.
There’s no shortage of events to keep you entertained while visiting The Whitsundays. Most weekends you’ll find live music, markets, and entertainment galore in Airlie Beach and on the islands. Time your trip with the Airlie Beach Festival of Music – one of Queensland’s premier live music events - that sees Airlie Beach come alive with music and entertainment spread throughout the best party venues in town. The crystal-clear waters of The Whitsundays make it the ultimate spot for sailing regattas and ocean swims. The Great Barrier Reef Festival held annually in August celebrates the Great Barrier Reef and showcases the Whitsunday lifestyle and community with food, art, culture, and environmentalism.
Explore the region
From exclusive honeymoon or adult-only island escapes to beachside camping spots, this region has you covered from the bush to the beach. Known as the gateway to The Whitsundays, Airlie Beach is the perfect base to explore the once-in-a-lifetime experiences The Whitsundays has to offer. A year-round tropical climate makes this the perfect spot for a family vacay, or a mesmerising couple’s getaway. If the rainforest and tropical waterfalls are more your style, Conway National Park is the best way to get off the beaten path. Amazing bushwalks, camping, fishing, swimming and biking are all on offer for those adventure lovers. Visit the famous Whitehaven Beach, voted one of the most beautiful beaches in the world time after time. Famed for its white sand, made up of 98% pure silica, it also contains traces of gold which makes the surrounding turquoise waters even more picturesque. In the Whitsundays there is no shortage of beaches, so why not check out this top 5 list of world class beaches that the region has to offer? If you’d like to get a taste of a few places why not island-hop or enjoy a daytrip to some of The Whitsundays most popular island spots including Hamilton Island, Hook Island, Hayman Island, Daydream Island, Whitsunday Island or Long Island. With a vast arrange of island-based accommodation also available, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
The Whitsundays Schedule - two flights a week