About Whitsundays

Whitsundays is a cluster of 74 incredible islands located off the Queensland coast and is part of the iconic Great Barrier Reef. Renowned for its pristine white sandy beaches, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and picturesque landscapes, this is one of the go-to destinations for holiday seekers in Australia.
The beaches here have a story of their own. The most famous one is Whitehaven Beach, which is regarded as one of the world's best beaches. Airlie Beach is a vibrant social hub with a lively atmosphere and a range of restaurants, bars, and shops. It is a great base for exploring the islands and experiencing the local culture.
A little peek into the history of Whitsundays tells us that the Ngaro and Gia people had inhabited the islands for thousands of years, relying on the bountiful marine resources. European exploration began in the 17th century, with Captain James Cook charting the region in 1770. In the 19th century, the islands saw timber logging and farming activities. As tourism grew in the 20th century, the Whitsundays transformed into a popular destination, renowned for its stunning beaches, the establishment of resorts, and the gateway it provides to the Great Barrier Reef.
This picturesque destination is a haven for sailing, diving, and snorkelling enthusiasts, providing experiences that should be on any adventurer's bucket list. Just picture yourself diving into a surreal underwater realm, teeming with tropical fish and other marine creatures, or basking in the sun's warm embrace aboard a sailing boat. These are experiences that are certain to leave a big smile on your face!
Whitsunday Island cruises to Whitehaven Beach are not to be missed too! With the perfect mix of stunning nature, thrilling adventures, and ultimate relaxation, these cruises offer the most wholesome Whitsunday Islands experience. 
Head here to tick off your bucket-list activities!

Whitsundays Cruise Experiences

Full Day Tours

9 Cruises

From $136

Snorkel Tours

7 Cruises

From $199

Sightseeing Cruises

16 Cruises

From $64

Sunset Cruises

3 Cruises

From $64

Featured Cruises

17 Cruises

8Hr ‘Lady Enid’ Langford Island Sail + Snorkel Cruise

Premium sail to Langford Island on the Lady Enid – for adults only. Snorkelling, illusion of ‘walking on water’, bush walks, fancy dining & service.

Duration 8hr

From $239

2Hr ‘Lady Enid’ Sunset Sailing Experience

An adults-only tour from Airlie Beach on a classic yacht – barefoot luxury with 5-star service. Enjoy antipasto and watch the sunset over the hills.

Duration 2hr

From $95

2Hr Sundowner Airlie Beach Sunset Cruise

Enjoy a sparkling sundowner on a cruise around Pioneer Bay & Turtle Bay. Take in the picture-perfect sunset and the lights of Airlie Beach on return.

Duration 2hr

From $64 $69

10Hr ‘Lady Enid’ Whitehaven Beach Sail + Snorkel Cruise

Sailing luxury redefined with the best of Whitehaven Beach – sunbathe on the soft silica sand, walk to Hill Inlet lookout, deluxe lunch & snorkel tour.

Duration 10hr

From $269

9Hr Camira Sailing Adventure Whitsundays

The Whitsundays beckon as you sail the azure waters on the stunning Camira. The complete Whitehaven Beach tour – snorkel & hike to Hill Inlet lookout.

Duration 9hr

From $229

10Hr Reef World Hardy Reef Exploration

Cruise beyond Whitsundays to Reefworld – a multi-level pontoon at the spectacular Hardy Reef! Snorkel, swim & explore this heritage-listed ecosystem.

Duration 10hr

From $299

10Hr Hamilton Island Freestyle Boat Tour

Explore Hamilton Island, a uniquely Australian paradise, at your own pace. Swim at Catseye Beach, hike to Passage Peak, visit galleries & go shopping.

Duration 10hr

From $136

10.5Hr Whitehaven Beach & Hamilton Island Tour

Discover two of Australia's best-loved destinations in one day. Eat, drink, shop on Hamilton Island, later - swim, hike or relax on Whitehaven Beach.

Duration 11hr

From $191

7Hr Whitsunday Islands & Whitehaven Beach Cruise

Cruise through azure waterways to Whitehaven Beach – the jewel in the Whitsundays crown! Sunbathe, swim & hike the Solway Circuit for stunning views.

Duration 7hr

From $140

30Min Ultimate Airlie Beach Jet Boat Ride

Airlie’s #1 must-do jet boat ride – 360° spins, power stops, drifts, nosedives. Splendid Whitsundays views, informative commentary & free photos.

From $95

6Hr Southern Lights Whitehaven Beach Tour

Memorable beach tour in Whitsundays onboard a semi rigid inflatable vessel offering a snorkel experience at Border Island with colourful wildlife

Duration 6hr

From $199

6Hr Ocean Rafting Whitehaven Northern Exposure Cruise

Three experiences in just one day – fun boat ride to Whitehaven Beach, snorkelling at two sites & guided National Park walk to Hill Inlet lookout.

Duration 6hr

From $199

8Hr Whitehaven Beach Sailing and Snorkeling Cruise

Whitehaven Beach sailing and snorkeling experience on board a classic yacht to explore the beautiful Whitsunday region. Lunch & tea included.

Duration 8hr

From $205

2Hr Wildcat Sunset Cruise

Join an award-winning operator on a sunset cruise around Mackay Marina; roof-top viewing platform for 360° views. Perfect for couples & families.

Duration 2hr

From $89

7Hr Wildcat Mackay Snorkel and Islands Tour

An adventure cruise on the brand-new Wildcat to discover the Paradise islands off the Mackay coast. Snorkel and paddle-board expeditions included.

Duration 7hr

From $199

6Hr Thundercat Whitsundays Eco Adventure Tour

Choose this award-winning Whitsundays adventure tour on the Thundercat – visit Whitehaven Beach, Hill Inlet lookout & snorkel at 2 unique sites.

Duration 8hr

From $210

8Hr Thundercat Great Barrier Reef Adventure Cruise From Whitsundays

Choose this award-winning Whitsundays adventure tour on the Thundercat – visit Whitehaven Beach, Hill Inlet lookout & snorkel at 2 unique sites.

Duration 8hr

From $210

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Know Before You Go

Best Time To Visit

With approximately 300 days of sunshine each year and mild temperatures, the Whitsundays region is a haven for pleasant weather. Spring unveils the best of the Whitsundays, offering consistently sunny days, low humidity, and ideal conditions for swimming, snorkelling, and diving. During the wet season, tropical showers are common but typically brief, adding a refreshing touch to the tropical ambience.

Public Holidays

Sunday, 1 January: New Year's Day
Monday, 2 January: Additional public holiday for New Year's Day
Thursday, 26 January: Australia Day
Friday, 7 April: Good Friday
Saturday, 8 April: Day following Good Friday
Sunday, 9 April: Easter Sunday
Monday, 10 April: Easter Monday
Tuesday, 25 April: Anzac Day
Monday, 25 December: Christmas Day
Tuesday, 26 December: Boxing Day

Events & Festivals

Airlie Beach Festival of Music
Held in November, this multi-day music festival brings together local and international artists across various genres. It's a lively celebration of music, with performances taking place in venues throughout Airlie Beach. (Some even call it Queensland’s best music festival!)

Whitsunday Reef Festival
Celebrated in August, this festival is a week-long extravaganza that highlights the Whitsundays' coastal lifestyle. It includes fireworks, live music, street parades, food stalls, and various family-friendly activities.

Hamilton Island Race Week
Taking place in August, this prestigious yachting event attracts sailors from around the world. It combines competitive sailing with social activities, including fashion shows, gourmet food, and entertainment.

School Holidays

Queensland: 1 April to 16 April

Queensland: 24 June to 9 July

Queensland: 16 September to 2 October

Queensland: 9 December 2023 to 21 January 2024


The larger islands like Hamilton Island have hotels and resorts which are expensive; for cheaper alternatives you find mid-range hotels or eco lodges on other smaller islands. Airbnb is also available and is a more affordable option. Expect to pay double if you don’t book early! Camping grounds are available on the island, but this requires you to have your own boat and make your own meal.


Being one of the most popular of all the islands, Hamilton is flooded with food establishments. There are numerous fine dining venues, but dig deep and you can find plenty of casual eateries as well. The coastal enclave of Airlie Beach is also mushrooming in cafes and restaurants. The menus here have a strong local influence and the views here are simply out of this world!


Car hire is easily available at the Whitsundays Coast Airport. Hiring a car is the easiest way to get around the mainland, but to navigate between the mainland and islands, there are other options. Skipper your own boat, join a range of multi-day or single-day cruises or tours, or take a transfer.

Whitsundays Tourist Information

Public Conveniences

There are open parks and gardens for recreational use. There are also RV-friendly camping grounds within the region. Public toilets and campsites are available on most beaches.

Shopping & Market Hours

Whitsundays Plaza in Cannonvale and Whitsundays Shopping centre in Airlie are the two major shopping destinations on the islands. Expect food, fashion, everyday convenience, and specialist retailers. Grab a souvenir from one of the supermarkets!

Medical Services

Find medical assistance at Affinity Family Medical on Cannonvale. Proserpine Hospital, one of the region's popular hospitals is 26 kms away from the Whitsunday region.

Blogs & Articles

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Island Paradise Unveiled: The Best Of Whitsundays

If you visit a new beach in Australia everyday for the rest of your life, it would take more than 32 years to see them all. The 74 stunning islands of the Whitsundays are like emeralds scattered on a sapphire-blue ocean.