Airlie Beach Mini Guide
Located in the Whitsunday region of Queensland and rumoured to have been named after the Scottish town of Airlie, this Australian town is one of the best set off points for those wanting to experience the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef. In keeping with the regions name sake, each year on Whit Sunday the residents of Airlie Beach celebrate the day with a blessing of all the boats moored there.
Many sailing tours depart from Airlie Beach to the Whitsunday Islands making it a perfect spot to begin an exploration of the bay. If you want to try somewhere different, Boathaven Beach, at the other end of the town is a man made beach which is tidal and protected with nets from the stinging jellyfish. It opened in 2011 and is very popular.
Of the seventy four islands of Whitsunday only seventeen are inhabited but they are all picture postcard perfect and all feature pure white sand beaches and turquoise waters. Why not take a catamaran cruise through the islands to Knuckle Reef and explore from a glass bottom boat to make your visit truly memorable.
Due to the huge amount of activities and large visitor numbers Airlie Beach really caters for all types and budgets. There are a lot of options available for dining out with everything you can imagine from typical fast food franchises to silver service restaurants. All the bars, pubs and nightclubs are located near the centre of the town and along the Shute Harbour Road.
Accommodation also caters to all budgets, from stylish all inclusive resorts to caravan parks and backpackers hostels so there really is something for everyone, also on and near Shute Harbour Road you will also find any souvenirs and gifts that you may need. A real backpackers paradise and a popular tourist destination, the town's council has provided a purpose built fresh water lagoon for visitors to enjoy swimming, as the actual beach is small and its waters inhabited with nasty stinging jellyfish!
Distances in Australia are huge so the best way to travel is definitely by air, Airlie Beach has its own small airport serviced by most of the domestic airlines operating from Sydney
and all main airports and prices are reasonable. The Queensland rail service provides regular connections to Airlie from all along the Queensland coast but the water taxi that runs from the terminal at Shute Harbour just six kilometres outside of Airlie is also a good way to travel the Whitsunday area. Coaches from all the major cities and towns stop at Airlie Beach so there’s no excuse for not visiting the town at least once on your trip down under.