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Most travellers arrive at the beautiful Whitsunday Islands by sailboat from Airlie Beach. It's a suitably romantic way to arrive - the islands are lovely. There are some great sections of reef to explore, by snorkelling or diving, and some fabulous beaches to kick back on including glorious Whitehaven Beach which changes shade as the light passes over.
If you intend to sail and are on a budget, it is best to wait until the day before and book your trip in Airlie Beach as spare places on boats are often available at huge discounts.
You can fly from most Australian capital cities to the Whitsundays Airport (approximately 40 minutes drive from the town of Airlie Beach) on the mainland or directly onto Hamilton Island.
Regular ferry transfers depart from Shute Harbour (25 minutes by bus from Airlie Beach) to/from the major Whitsunday islands.
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