Paradise - pure and simple. Crystal clear waters and pristine white sand beaches abound throughout the Whitsundays, and Airlie Beach is the perfect base from which to explore it all.
I was pretty excited to arrive at Airlie Beach for a few reasons:
1. I was staying once more with Base, so I knew I was going to have a blast.
2. I was going to finally experience some part of the Great Barrier Reef, one of the worlds most treasured heritage sites.
3. Whithaven Beach is renowned as one of the worlds best beaches, I had to see it.
I arrived in the heat of the day at Airlie Beach, very hot from a 3 hour drive from Rockhampton. At Base I met the general manager Kellie who sorted me out with some great accommodation and told me the lay of the land. This was the view from my room:
Once I was settled in it was time to organise the BBQ for guests of Base. This was a record turnout with about 70 backpackers coming along to find out about ParkMyVan and get a feed.
The evening was spent partying in the Down Under Bar and catching up with two friends I'd made in Brisbane who were now going down the east coast.
I also ran into two people who'd gone to my high school in north western sydney - small world!
The next day it was time to hit the Whitsundays! Courtesy of Ocean Rafting. It was a full day jammed pack day of activities. We set off in the morning zooming along in a speed boat through the islands to our first Snorkel spot where I got to snorkel with all sorts of marine life. We were lucky enough to also see a really old and big turtle as well.
After another snorkel we went on a bush walk through the Whitsunday Island National Park and worked up a pretty big appetite. The view from the top of the hill was spectacular.
Thankfully - Ocean Rafting treats you to a full lunch buffet on board the boat whilst reclining on Whithaven Beach - it's pretty damn luxurious. After lunch we hung out on Whithaven Beach, relaxing in the amazing water and having many close encounters with the friendly rays and small sharks who live in the water.