It's no secret that Australia's Whitsunday Islands boasts beautiful, tropical weather all year round. The paradisical set of islands (74 to be precise) are shielded by the mighty Great Barrier Reef making it's environment perfect for the cruising getaway or adventure. The Whitsunday Islands offers the ultimate in holiday amusement all year round showcasing pristine waters for diving, swimming, relaxing, stunning National Parks for land-lubbers and sunsets to rival even the most idyllic of tropical scenery. So, whether you are embarking upon a month long bareboating excursion or a week or two aboard an organised sailing trip, there is something for everyone to enjoy,
Leave behind your winter woollies and pack that swimming costume because the Whitsunday Islands sets it's water temperature to 20 and 25 degrees Celsius on average, every day. There are, of course, variances in warmth between the seasons and the below chart advises you of the temperatures you can expect when travelling during specific months of the year.
Summer (December to January)
Naturally, summer brings the hottest temperatures. It is also the wet season for tropical North Queensland, so you will enjoy many frequent showers to help cool you down.
Winter (June – August)
Winter comprises the perfect climate for making the most out of your Whitsunday Island holiday with the days remaining positively balmy and evenings being significantly cooler.
Please Note: Australia is subject to strong UV rays so it is important to be sun-safe during all seasons. Always wear an SPF 15+ sun screen lotion and appropriate clothing to protect you from the sun.
|Average Maximum Daytime Temperatures|
Many Safe Anchorages
The Whitsundays has many safe anchorages, each within easy sailing distance of the next. This means you can generally find refuge from prevailing winds and protection from any kind of weather.
The Whitsundays are home to some of the most spectacular and unspoilt beaches in the world.
The Whitsunday Islands are famed not only for beautiful clear waters but also for remarkable National Parks. Be dazzled by the myriad of flora and fauna found in the natural wonderlands of the forests. Walking tracks provide you a clear path through the parks and to the various summits where you can take that perfect photo of the stunning surrounds.
Between August and October whales are often seen breaching, particularly around Hervey Bay. It's wonderful to experience these majestic creatures of the sea, often close to your vessel.
Dining and Nightlife
There are several world class resorts on the islands, that offer fine dining, nightlife and relaxing spa. If you like a little luxury with your adventure, you can anchor your boat and stay ashore and pamper yourself.
The Great Barrier Reef and the reefs scattered throughout the islands, play host to amazing marine life. Crystal clear waters make for ideal snorkelling conditions. Don your mask and flippers and swim with the fishes, perhaps spot a sea turtle and bathe in the inviting water temperatures ranging from 23°C to 27°C.
No matter if you are an experienced scuba diver or just a novice, there is ample opportunity for you to dive at the Whitsunday Islands and the Great Barrier Reef. Most organised sailing trips can offer diving equipment either for free or for hire. If you aren't too sure, simply ask at the time of booking your cruise.
Jet Skiing/water skiing
If you wish to jet ski/water ski it's best to do this when you visit one of the many resorts that provide this facility, as the Great Barrier Marine Park does not permit jet skiing/water skiing within the Marine Park.
There is nothing more exhilarating than anchoring up and swimming straight off the back of your own cruiser.
In spite of the warm water you'll experience in the Whitsundays all year around, most people would benefit from the added warmth, buoyancy and sunburn protection that you obtain from a wetsuit for extended periods in the water. Remember to always watch the boat to see that you're not getting too far away!
Trip to the Outer Great Barrier Reef
A trip to the outer reef provides an experience not to be missed. You can choose from numerous different options.
Seeing the Great Barrier Reef from the air in a helicopter, seaplane or aeroplane is simply breathtaking, and provides unlimited photographic opportunities.
Snorkelling or scuba diving on the reef is a truly defining moment. For those who don’t wish to get their toes wet, there's underwater coral viewing subs for your pleasure.
Special arrangements can be made through Helireef to pick you up and drop you off at your cruiser.
It's essential if everyone is leaving the boat for the day that it's tied to a fixed mooring and not left at anchor.
Stinger Season - Jellyfish
Jellyfish season is from October through to May. These creatures of the sea can be found floating about the mainland, creek and river outlets during this period and they are especially prevalent after rain. You might occasionally see a jellyfish at the reefs, though this is not typical.
We recommend that you hire a 'Stinger Suit' if you are at all concerned about being stung by a jellyfish and especially if you are travelling during the Stinger Season. A suit is made out of a comfortable light-weight Lycra that also has the added benefit of serving as a sun protector. Stop in and see (or call) the good people at 'Anchors Away' and they will entitle you to the use of goggles, flippers and a snorkel for FREE when you hire a Stinger Suit with them.
The chances of being stung by one of these is extremely remote. However, in the rare event of receiving a sting it is important to apply vinegar to the affected area as soon as possible as this neutralises the tentacles left behind on the skin, thus reducing the potential for ongoing pain. These stings can be very painful and have been likened to the the sensation of a burn.
This is the more mild of the two main species with stings that result inthe feeling of something similar to a mosquito bite. Although in most cases no mark is left (perhaps just small red marks) the affected area can sweat profusely.
Please Note: If you do happen to be stung by a jellyfish DO NOT, under any circumstances, rub the stung area as this will spread and worsen the sting itself, causing more pain. Apply vinegar immediately and seek help urgently. Do not re-enter the water.
Tender Port - Wheelchair access limited and some mobility may be required to board tenders.