Do you need to book a sailing tour or can you visit the Whitsunday Islands on a day trip as well? There is no wrong or right, there is cheaper and more expensive though, and it depends on the time you have available. Let me tell you what you can expect.
The Whitsunday Islands is probably one of the main reasons to visit Australia. Airlie Beach is the starting point for tours to the Whitsundays. Airlie Beach has been growing very much during the past years, since the popularity of the islands is increasing across the world. During high season backpackers storm the few bars, which are lined up in the short main street. This is the street, where can book multi-day sailing trips or a day tour with a speedboat.
Sailing Tours to Whitsundays
The sailing trips to the islands are very popular. The sailboat Atlantic Clipper has made a name for itself as a party boat. Other sailboats like the Apollo make it a bit more comfortable. If you book last minute (and maybe even during the low season) you are in a better position to negotiate a nice discount. Just walk around at the main street of Airlie Beach and ask in different shops. Tell that the prices of the other booking agencies and ask if they make make it cheaper.
Day Trips to Whitsunday Islands
Two companies (Big Fury and Ocean Rafting) offer day trips to the Whitesundays. For about 100 to 150 dollars you will be taken from about 10 am to 17 pm with a speedboat out to the islands. You will have time for snorkeling, to lie on the beach, you get to eat and you return back to Airlie Beach before sunset. A day tour to the Whitsundays is ideal for those who are a bit short on time or cash, or the weather beats is not that great.
Day Trip or Sailing Tour
Have a look at the weather forecast – if the weather is not that nice and if it will be cloudy and maybe even rainy, you should really consider to just go for the day trip. It’s just not the same, not even on the pictures.
If you have the time and the money, you should consider the sailing trip. Backpackers love the time at the boat, it’s bascially a big boat party and you get to meet new people. Of course you get more time to do snorkeling etc., but if you just want to see the Whitehaven Beach, the day tour can be enough. It will also be much cheaper.
Check out the video above to have an idea what is going to expect you on a sail boat.