When I'm briefing or chatting with visiting charterers, I’m often asked to recommend anchorages that are my personal favourites. There are so many amazing places to visit in the Whitsundays and of course, where you go will be dependant on the weather conditions. But if I was asked on the spot, where my top five anchorages are, here is what I would say....
Just outside of our base at Shute Harbour you will find Bauer Bay. It's a protected anchorage from the South and South-East winds, although it can get a bit rolly if the breeze tends into a more Easterly aspect. The walks around the side of the golf course then up to Spion Kop Lookout will give you views to die for, without unduly punishing your physical abilities. The vistas down onto Bauer Bay and Unsafe Passage, and across to Daydream Island, then to the South-East across Whitsunday Passage to Hamilton Island will give you ample camera fodder.
Cid Harbour's safest and best-protected anchorage is Sawmill Beach. It's almost a perfect anchoring with depths 3 to 5 metres. From the Southern end of Sawmill Beach, a track winds its way uphill to the top of Whitsunday Peak, where views will gently blow your mind. Allow 3 to 4 hours for the return hike on this one, and remember to take water and a snack to be enjoyed on top of Whitsunday Peak. From the Northern end of Sawmill Beach, a shorter gentler stroll of 15 to 20 minutes will take you through the forest to a secluded, romantic treasure, Dugong Beach. This secret sport is certainly not the biggest or most popular beach, but definitely one of the most beautiful. Taking a picnic hamper and a bottle (or 2) of your favourite wines will give you a relaxing romantic escape or quality family time to treasure.
Many people say Nara inlet is the best anchorage in the Whitsundays. As the name suggests, this anchorage is an inlet meaning it's highly protected from almost every wind direction. At the end of the inlet, you can visit the Ngaro cultural site, a cave with the first Australian's artwork dating back 9000 years and in the wet season, there are waterfalls to be enjoyed.
Tongue Bay / Hill Inlet / Whitehaven Beach. Yet another of “The Icons”, Tongue Bay is well protected and gives charterers immediate access across the isthmus to beautiful Betty’s Beach and Lookout Beach. Swimming, beachcombing, sun-worshipping, or gently strolling up to the awesome lookouts will enable you to take your own unique photos (the patterns in the sands of Hill Inlet change with every tide), across the Inlet all the way down Whitehaven Beach, which of course is know internationally as one of the great beaches on our planet.
Langford Island Sandspit is incredibly unique and a great place to head to if you want to enjoy a day of relaxing, sunbaking and snorkelling right off a stunning sandy beach. You can pick up a public mooring buoy for the day and then head to Stonehaven Bay where you can safely anchor for the night in a delightful ambience.
There are, of course, many other recommended anchorages in the Whitsundays, this list is just very quick-pick from my list. When you charter a bareboat with us, we will make sure you can pull together a fantastic itinerary which covers the best anchorages to match your interests and the wind conditions.
Join us to bareboat in the Whitsundays and enjoy the freedom to explore