When arriving the coast after driving Australia’s inland for so long we really wanted to do some water related activities. We loved the tour we took the last time to get a taste of the Whitsundays, we loved it so much that we wanted to do it again. And we knew we could get a calm but fun filled day with Whitehaven Xpress (a booze cruise and party-party isn’t our style of traveling), so we contacted the company a day or two in advance and they could take us.
Early in the morning they picked us up at the Big4 camp we stayed at close to Airlie Beach and drove us down to the marina where the boat were waiting. On the way out we all got a stinger suite (to rent). It’s highly recommended to use that as it was the high season for jellyfish. The season lasts from November until June! By using a lycra suite you do yourself a favor as the stings from a jellyfish can be very painful, in worst case deadly (and you are in protection from the sun too *BONUS*).
First stop of the day was Whitsunday Island where we went for a bush walk to “Hill Inlet Lookout” to get the perfect view of beautiful Whitehaven Beach and the Whitsundays. The walk takes around 15 minutes each way and isn’t too demanding.
When we all were back at the beach we got picked up again (an inflatable boat is used for transfer to and from the vessel), and we set course for Whitehaven Beach. Whitehaven Beach is the beach of all beaches: Its pure silica sand makes it so soft and white (Have you ever touched potato flour? Imagine you walking on that stuff!), and it’s so beautiful surrounded by turquoise crystal clear water.
We spent 2-3 hours here, and we could do whatever we wanted to; relax on the beach, go for a swim (use your stinger suite(!), everyone looks good in lycra – at least that was what they told us, haha), take a walk or just sit down in the cool shade. The crew cooked up a BBQ lunch, which included various kinds of meat (steaks, burgers and sausages), rice, bread, salads and tropical fresh fruits. Cold drinks were available for a cheap price.
When sitting down to eat you should be a bit careful, and we do not recommend sitting on the ground. It’s plenty of tables and benches to sit at, and try not to drop any food. The reason for this is that there are plenty of goannas, and they can we pretty curious and ongoing.
You can’t take a day out in the Whitsundays without any snorkeling, and that’s the last stop of the day before returning to the marina.
They have snorkel equipment available for everyone, and before jumping into the water they are going through some hand signals to communicate with when you are away from the boat.
We were swimming and snorkeling over spectacular corals and exotic fish were swimming with us. It’s such a unique experience! If you aren’t a fan of swimming or snorkeling you can join a tour with a guide in the glass bottom boat.
Just a short clip from our snorkeling experience
On the way back to the marina they served cheese and biscuits. We arrived around 5pm and then we got dropped off where they picked us up.
Good to know
Bring swimwear and towel, hat, sunscreen lotion, camera and/or underwater camera, a light jacket/sweater for cool or windy days, credit card or cash.
Normal tap water is available for free and bottled water is for sale, so no need to bring that.
This day tour is well worth the money as they are providing a personal unique experience. As last time we had such a great day; the crew was awesome, the food was tasty, and I think we could go on a tour with this small family operated company again and again and again. A big bonus: they don’t take too many on this tour (approx. 40) unlike some of the other companies.