Comprising more than 70 islands and vibrant towns, the Whitsunday Region is one of Queensland’s most popular tourist destinations. It encompasses part of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef that sprawls across the Coral Sea and blissful beaches that can be viewed from the air or below.
Things to do in Whitsunday Region
The most famous beach in the Whitsunday Region is undoubtedly Whitehaven, a pristine stretch of blindingly white sand that is protected within Whitsunday Islands National Park. It can be accessed aboard catamarans or yacht sailing tours from the lively hub of Airlie Beach, as well as from the air by helicopter or seaplane. For spectacular views of Whitehaven Beach, follow the hiking trail that leads to the Hill Inlet Lookout.
If you’re taking to the skies, don’t miss the opportunity to see Heart Reef from above. This unique coral formation in the shape of a heart forms part of Hardy Reef and was discovered by a pilot in 1975. A flight above Heart Reef is not only one of the Whitsunday Region’s most iconic experiences but a popular option for couples wanting a romantic proposal.
Due to its protected status, you can’t snorkel or dive at Heart Reef but there are plenty of other sites in the Whitsunday Region where you can. Don a mask and snorkel to explore off the beach at Langford Island, explore the underwater wonders of Blue Pearl Bay or go scuba diving in the biodiverse Bait Reef Marine Park.
Getting around Whitsunday Region
Whitsunday Coast Airport is the main aviation gateway to the Whitsunday Region and has flights to Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. Direct flights also arrive at Hamilton Island Airport. Both public buses and shuttle buses travel around the Whitsunday Region and boat tours are available for accessing the islands.