Airlie Beach is one of the most stunningly beautiful places we’ve ever been. It’s part of the mainland, but considered the gateway to the Whitsundays – 74 neighboring small islands. We were anchored off shore and had a gorgeous view of many of the islands. The water was so beautiful, too. We had a few puffy clouds in the otherwise blue sky, and it was warm and humid. What a relief to have a nice day for a change!
Here’s a shot of the lagoon. Notice nobody in the water. That’s because it’s full of box jelly fish. Ouch!
The town scheduled their annual Reef Festival to coincide with our arrival. They had a fair with a carnival, air show, regatta, helicopter joy rides (6 or 10 mins), and get this – camel rides on the beach!! Who would ever guess that one? It was tempting, but I didn’t do it (just in case you were wondering).
Bruce had to work until almost noon, so we got a late start. We were tendered into town via catamarans like we rode to the Reef. The current is so strong going through here that they couldn’t use anything smaller. We walked along the boardwalk beside the beach into the main part of town – about a 15 minute walk.
We shopped a bit, but only bought a magnet. Then we discovered where the fair was. We walked all through that and took a lot of pictures. Then we headed back for a late lunch on the ship. We were reminded once again how draining the humidity can be.
Too bad we didn’t get two days here. I could have stayed much longer. Tomorrow we’ll be at sea all day on our way south to Brisbane. We’re not sure yet if we’re going to do an excursion. We’re a bit gun shy after our bad experience at the Reef. But we might take a bus ride to the Australia Zoo – founded by the late Steve Irwin. Or we might go to the Lone Pine Koala Park. The jury is still out – check back for the verdict.