WARNING: This is one LONG… but very beautiful blog post.
Potentially one of my favourites so far.
It’s full of photos though don’t worry, an easy post-Christmas scroll for you all.
I’ll give you a minute now to go and get a cup of tea (maybe some cake too).
So we arrived on the Greyhound bus
at Airlie Beach, dropped our ever-heavy backpacks at our hostel and went to explore.
Airlie beach is a small village, with a couple of main roads/ strips, one of which you can see in the photo above. All the hostels and amenities are along these strips making it viable to walk everywhere and crawl home after a couple of ciders.
The tourism here is pretty much soley driven in by the fact Airlie beach is THE gateway to The Whitsunday’s.
If you have no idea what The Whitsunday’s are – you’re in the right place.
Here at Airlie beach, much like Cairns, there is a communal lagoon because swimming in the sea is advised against due to the jellyfish lurking around – particularly this time of year (December).
But we aren’t fussy where we sunbathe if I’m honest…
…ALSO, if any of you ever come here you have to try the smoothies and food at a place called ‘Wisdom’ which is just next to the Lagoon.
My favourite being the Sweet potato quiche and their ‘Bliss balls’.
So anyway, we only had one day to sunbathe and explore (hard life) before boarding a 3 days 2 night boat to explore The Whitsundays.
For the one night prior to the boat we stayed in Beaches Backpackers
, which couldn’t be in a better location, was clean and one i’d highly recommend for those dorm – hopping.
Okay okay enough of me talking, down to business…
…or down to scrolling.
It’s time for me to show you around The Whitsundays – 74 island wonders located in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef.
TIP: If you want to get on a specific boat i.e. the Clipper party boat, don’t leave it until last minute like we did (in peak season) because they are sold our for weeks in advance.
At 1pm, we walked down to the harbour and boarded the Condor boat, setting sail at around 2pm.
We sailed for around 2 hours into The Whitsundays, sunbathing and meeting our fellow cabin members on the way.
We stopped for a spot of snorkelling & lunch at Ravens Cove followed by more sunbathing as we sailed to Hook’s passage for our overnight anchoring.
5.30am wake up call, 6am breakfast, 6.30am Sail to Tongue Bay aka Whitehaven Beach… voted the 3rd most beautiful beach in the world…
Are you ready?
The sand is literally the most beautiful sand i’ve EVER walked on.
‘The sand is minute powder-size grains of quartz and has been assayed at 99.89% pure, well above the minimum requirement for glass-making and suitable for the finest glass for optical lenses for binoculars.’
Demonstrated wonderfully here by my feet…
The sand stretches for nearly 7km and is snuggled by the most beautiful clear waters.
A piece of heaven on earth.
… until you get pied by a wave whilst trying to look peaceful in a photo.
Let the photoshoot commence…
Moment of appreciation for my beautiful travelling partner…
The early start and all the hard work sunbathing and modelling had worked us up an appetite and so we headed back to the boat at midday where lunch was already waiting for us…
The afternoon saw us head to Mackerel Bay another snorkel spot which was really beautiful – the coral was really stunning here and we saw a million beautiful fishes again.
Still no sign of turtles… and we were ITCHING to see them 🙂
We swam the afternoon away before sailing to Stonehaven Beach for our second night.
The sunset really was stunning and it was one of those evenings that I’ll remember when i’m old and grey.
We were completely at peace with a cold cider in one hand, best friend in another and a view that reminds you what a beautiful world we live in.
I live for moments like these.
We all enjoyed a few more ciders together before crashing out after to a long day exploring!
The cabin was way too hot to sleep in and so most of us opted to sleep on deck.
Not the comfiest place i’ve ever slept but it did mean falling asleep under the most beautiful blanket of stars and waking up to the sunrise at 5am…
(sleepy selfie…sorry Hayley)
Once my partner in crime woke around 6am, we grabbed a bowl of cereal and a cup of tea and enjoyed the peaceful bliss that accompanied the remainder of the sunrise…
Our final day sailed us to our last snorkel spot at Langford Reef.
By this time we had been completely spoilt by the Great Barrier reef and were actually hesitant about bothering to getting wet for another hour of coral and fish.
But in honour of people at home working, we didn’t complain and jumped straight in…
… which turned out to be the RIGHT decision because look who we found?
As you can imagine, we had MASSIVE GRINS on our faces for the rest of the day.
We saw about 4 turtles which was pretty surreal – another old and grey kinda moment.
Followed by Mr. Stingray…
Shortly followed by Nachos back on the boat.
All in all – a cracker of a last day wasn’t it?
We docked around midday back at Abel Point Marina, before reclaiming our backpacks and reflecting on the trip.
I throughly enjoyed the experience and will back up the claim that you can’t come to Australia without seeing it.
Hopefully I’ve captured the beauty of this trip through the photos – but honestly it still doesn’t do it justice.
This is one you’re all going to have to go and do for yourselves.
I know i’m forever nudging you all in the direction of ‘GO TRAVELLING’ and well, just a warning…
I won’t be stopping any time soon!
Thank you for reading, lots of love all the way from Australia…
Coming up… Exploring another BEAUTY – Fraser Island!