Airlie Beach, Australia
Ocean Rafting Airlie Beach Reviews
Wet N' Wild! Jan 09, 2013
We went on the Ocean Rafting day tour because we really wanted to see Hill Inlet - the trail that leads up to the lookout point where you can see over Whitehaven Beach. It was one of the only day trips that offered this. It cost $125 plus $7 for 'stinger' suit/wetsuit hire and $15 dollars for lunch (you can bring your own!). They collected us at a bus stop on main street, Airlie Beach at 9AM and took us to the resort the trip starts at. It finishes at 4.30PM.
Firstly, depending on whether you chose the Northern Whitsunday route (offers more snorkelling time) or the Southern route (offers more beach time) they split you up onto seperate boats. The boats look like inflatable life boats. They're yellow and fit about 30 people on board. We were on the 'Thrilla' boat! They motor out to the snorkelling spot first. Depending on the weather, the waves can be quite high. The bigger the waves, the better the fun! The front of the boat gets thrown around a lot more.
The snorkelling area they go to is superb. The water is clear and you can see all the fish and coral clearly. The current is not strong there either so you can relax and float about without worrying about being carried off out to sea. They also make people who can't swim feel very comfortable and safe.
The staff on board make it their priority to ensure everyone on board enjoys their time on the boat. They play loud music and go around the boat informing everyone of the history of the islands and some fun trivia.
Afterwards you go to Hill Inlet for the 'bush walk' which takes about 10 minutes to walk to the lookout. The lookout is, without a doubt, the best part of the trip. It's worth going on the trip just to see the sight of that picturesque white-sanded bay rolling out in front of your eyes. And due to the nature of the bay itself and the low tides and close-to-the-surface sand that make the sight unique, the scene changes every single day. It never looks the same on any two days! Magical.
You then go onto Whitehaven Beach. The sand is so fine and utterly white. It's so unique, and rated one of the top ten beaches in the world. The water is crystal clear and there is not that many people on the beach because the island is uninhabited. Only the people from the boat trips are on the beach.The sand doesn't get too hot either because it's so white it reflects the sun! You stay there for an hour and a half and lunch is served on the boat. Beware of hungry, precocious seagulls!
The ride back to the mainland takes about an hour but is utterly amazing! You just sit back, relax and enjoy the afternoon sun.
Utterly memorable and highly recommended.
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