Advice: What to do in the Whitsundays

Last updated 14:35 25/02/2014

What can I do in the Whitsundays, and when should I go? If you have a travel question, email us at travel@stuff.co.nz.

Q. I'm planning a solo trip the Whitsundays soon. Is there a time of year that you recommend and an indicative itinerary for about 5 days? I'm 36, quite active and would definitely like to snorkel the reef. Any help would be appreciated, thanks! Elsa.

A. The Whitsundays is blessed with a tropical climate of hot summers and lovely mild winters with average daily temperatures of around 22 - 23 degrees in June and July and up to 29 - 30 degrees in December and January.

As it is tropical, there is a wet season from January to March when days can be steamy with tropical rain, so I would recommend avoiding those months.

With regards to your itinerary, it will depend on your travel arrangements. If flying into Proserpine then you could have a night in Airlie Beach which is a cute town and check out the Whitsunday Coast before heading out to an island for the remainder of your stay.  

Alternatively, and I think to make the most of your time, you can fly straight into Hamilton Island, then spend all of your time based on an island then day trip to explore this amazing part of the world.

Most of the 74 Whitsunday Islands are tropical deserted islands, but there are a handful that offer accommodation options ranging from complete luxury to cabins and cottages.

All of these accommodation providers have access to a huge array of fun activities, you will definitely want to schedule some beach time but for when you feel like getting out and about some favourite Whitsunday experiences are: walking in the National Parks, sailing to the amazing Whitehaven Beach, Great Barrier Reef adventures (where you spend the day at a reef pontoon where you'll get your snorkelling in), day cruises to the various islands, scenic flights and of course some fantastic day spas!  Five days is the perfect amount of time to be able to balance out relaxation and exploration. 

Gabrielle Brown, Destination Product Manager, Australia

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