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Top Water Activities in the Whitsunday Islands

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Published March 13th 2019

While most ocean-loving folk will immediately look to Byron Bay, Sydney, or Melbourne for their first Australian adventure, you'll be glad to hear that this remote corner of the world hides treasures even more majestic than its main shores. Enter: the Whitsundays, an Australian archipelago nestled in the epicentre of the Great Barrier Reef. Considering its unique location, a perfectly remote spot from the bustle of the main coast, and a combination of creamy sand beaches with translucent waters, this little bundle of islands makes for the dreamiest escape for people of all walks of life.

In fact, its water-based activities alone will keep you occupied for the duration of your stay, no matter if you're a snorkelling buff or you simply want to sightsee off the shores of these little islands. Let's go over several of the most popular water adventures you can put on your list so that you can make your Whitsunday stay all the more exciting!

Ocean rafting tours
You've likely seen the Whitsunday inlet on many an Insta-famous photo, due to its incredible beauty. However, this remote little nook is quite difficult to reach, unless you opt for an eco-approved ocean rafting ride that will take you to the inlet and other alluring spots in the archipelago. What's more, these rides are never dull, since each will be one of a kind depending on the mood of the ocean and the weather, and each destination will be different.

Even though the sights alone will be more than enough to get you mesmerized by the islands, rest assured that the host will also bring forth some fun details on the location so that you'll learn about the region as well.

Divine dives and snorkel spots
What would this trip even be without a snorkelling adventure? Remember, this is smack dab in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef, which means you can expect a colourful coral presentation under the waves, stunning and playful marine life, exotic fish species, and always a spectacular adventure all around.

However, you need the proper gear to make this experience worth your while and truly immerse yourself into the colour spectrum of the underwater life. By using a high-quality full-face snorkel mask that allows you to see underwater without the fogging, you'll spend every minute admiring the aquatic beauty of the reef and the surrounding snorkel-friendly areas. This is a calm region, so even if you're a newbie, you'll likely master the skill quickly with the help of an experienced instructor!

Team up on a cruise
The unique makeup of the islands allows you to explore its many alcoves by foot, while others are available only via its many intricate waterways. As a perfect example, the world-renowned Whitehaven beach is a 7-kilometre-long stretch of pure bliss clad in glistening waves and finest, white sand. However, this little gem of the archipelago is not fully accessible on foot, but you can book a local cruise to let you explore its stunning curves.

If you're travelling with your family, kids included, this is a perfect start to a family vacation, since it's not as thrilling as many other water options, and a perfect way to relax and enjoy the view. The cruise will take you to many a lookout as well, so brace yourself for a truly tranquil ride!

Get on a banana boat ride
Now, this one is higher on the spectrum of adrenaline-filled water activities, and it's perfect if you're travelling with more than one companion. In fact, the more the merrier, and all you need is the love for adventure and a desire to get up-close and personal with the ocean. Taken by the mighty jet ski, your primary responsibility will be to hold on and don't lose your grip!

The famous banana boat ride is a short but sweet adventure that will take you to see and splash around the bays of Airlie Beach, which on its own is another prime spot for sunbathing and lounging to your heart's content. If you're with the kids, this is also something to add on the list, especially for youngsters who enjoy water-based rollercoaster rides.

Win the windsurfing thrill
A mix of classic surfing and the art of sailing, windsurfing is a fun choice for anyone eager to relax while sliding across the calm waters of the islands, exploring the many bays you're bound to come across, and of course, enjoying the splendid view that will unravel as you cruise around the area.

An ideal choice for this particular activity is Hamilton Island and its famous Catseye Beach, equally striking as the Whitehaven Beach and all others that you'll visit during your stay. This also makes for a great activity to prepare you for the even more thrilling choices such as parasailing and sky diving, so make sure to experience as many as you possibly can!

This extraordinary archipelago is renowned for its pristine beaches, but even though you won't find the hustle of the coastal cities here, rest assured that these and many other activities will make your stay an exciting and memorable one. Make sure to fill your schedule to the brim and make the most of your vacation in the Whitsundays!
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