Hamilton Island, the Whitsundays and the Great Barrier reef claim the title as the third major yacht charter destination after the Caribbean and the Mediterranean. This tropical region is easily accessed, is safe and un-crowded, but most importantly offers the most unique on-the-water experiences that cannot be found elsewhere.
The Whitsundays comprise of 74 islands within a 40 nautical mile radius with Hamilton Island being the largest of the six that are inhabited. Easy access for charter is from the marina base on Hamilton with its airport, many flight options, hotels, shops and all the necessary facilities for a great charter experience.
Pick up your yacht at Hamilton Island marina, only a few minute’s drive from the island’s airport. Your itinerary should start with a visit to the Great Barrier Reef – which you can consider taking your own boat out to “if your suppliers permit this” but generally, the best option is to visit the reef via day charter, helicopter, seaplane or fast ferry out of Hamilton Island. Generally for your charter you want to stay within the safety of the Whitsunday islands themselves.
A Whitsundays yacht charter would not be complete without a visit to Whitehaven Beach. This vast stretch of pure white silica, squeaky sand, crystal clear water and spectrums of blue, is something that has to be seen and is the gem of the Whitsundays. Explore Hill inlet on your tender (at high tide), walk the miles of vast squeaky beach and if, like us, you need something a little more strenuous, enjoy a game of beach cricket with beer cases as wickets, a paddle as the bat and your crew members as the fielders. Great memories!
On-route you have many beautiful bays, anchorages, island walks and dive spots to choose from. Certainly for me, diving these islands has been the absolute highlight of my chartering experiences.
Nara Inlet, another amazing place to visit with great hikes up the steep inlet slopes to visit to the aboriginal caves and experience the historical cave art. What makes these islands so special is that around each corner there is something more spectacular than the last and together with the many safe anchorages, you can just loose yourself completely for days. Ideal.
Names like Stonehaven Bay, Butterfly Bay, Manta Ray Bay will all feature and these offer the most impressive snorkeling and scuba diving, stunning coral reefs and an abundance of sea life whether you venture into the water yourself or just enjoy from on board you yacht, its equally exhilarating.
If there is time, you can head across to the mainland and visit Airlie Beach to dock either at Abel Point or Point Marina. Explore this great little town with shops, pubs and restaurants and the unique local hospitality.
It’s a long way to fly for our South African charter guests so plan on a longer charter rather than just one week, to really get the most out of the trip or at least some time on dry land to extend the trip.
If you aren’t comfortable sailing yourselves, we can offer a skipper and / or crew to look after and spoil you.
This is truly a magnificent venue to charter and is well worth the effort and distance to get to. Leave the nitty gritty to us and let us help you put this all together.