For information on cruising, diving, sailing and holidaying in the tropical Whitsundays

Sailing Whitsundays - Island Guide - Popular Beaches


Whitehaven Beach
Whitehaven Beach is known around the world for its unparalleled beauty. Most people will tell you that a trip to the Whitsundays is not complete without a stop over at our most famous destination. Almost every charter boat in the area will offer its guests some time on Whitehaven Beach, as it is over 5km long there is still plenty of room for everyone.

Not surprisingly, Whitehaven Beach gets its name from the stunningly white silica sand, which is not overly common around the Whitsundays. At the northern end of the beach you will find the swirling sands of Hill Inlet. Hill Inlet is spectacular from the beach but the walking trail accessible from Whitehaven Beach or from Tongue Bay leads to a look out which many consider the top of the world.

Located on the South eastern side of Whitsunday Island accessible by sailing to the west of Esk Island if heading from the north or through Solway Passage if sailing up from the south. If coming through Solway Passage, be sure to sail well north of the reef at the southern end of Whitehaven before turning to port. The reef is marked with a north cardinal mark.

Chalkie's Beach
Chalkie's Beach is a great alternative to Whitehaven Beach as, like Whitehaven, it is a silica sand beach. The anchorage is a bit tough as there is a shelf that drops off sharply and it is subject to strong currents, so you may want to let out some extra chain. You can find some nice snorkeling at the northern end of the beach and if your bringing a picnic, keep an eye on the seagulls as they can be particularly cheeky at Chalkie's.
Facing Whitehaven Beach, Chalkie's Beach is located on the western side of Hazlewood Island. If sailing up from the south, be sure to sail port of Martin Islet and anchor north of the gap in the reef.

Cid Harbour
Dugong Beach
This is a shallow anchorage but one with a soft mud bottom so not much damage can be done if you find yourself settling on a low tide. This is a fantastic spot for a picnic or even to camp with an established campsite including tables and restrooms. The beach itself is lovely and there is also a good bushwalk to Dugong Inlet.
The slope of the Beach is fairly gradual so be mindful of low tides and show caution when approaching.

Nari's Beach
Also located in Cid Harbour, Nari's is a great spot for a lunch stop over but strong currents make it an uncomfortable overnight anchorage. Snorkeling again is affected by the currents as visibility is usually not great.

Sawmill Bay/Beach

There are several sand beaches and campsites located in Sawmill Bay with toilets and the possibility of tank water. Ross Islet is sometimes a nesting place for Sea Eagles so please stay away in Augsut & September. If these birds are disturbed they can take fright and abandon their eggs.
Watch out for strong currents and gusts of wind when entering from the South.

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