Monday, July 16, 2007

Sailing Whitsunday Islands (Great Barrier Reef)

Photo gallery: Great Barrier Reef - Whitsunday Islands
Google Earth Position: 20°17'35.79"S 149° 3'29.55"E

We spent 3 beautiful days and nights aboard the luxurious Alexander Stewart.

This tall ship is made from rich timber and has really a classic sailing charm. It is 21m long with 9 private double A/C cabins, inside dining room, showers etc. We appreciated the huge open deck area, just a few people aboard and fresh prepared food during the whole trip. Daily we ate from 9am to 10pm actually :).

The starting point was in the port town of Airlie Beach that we reached by airplane from Sydney and where we spent two nights. We especially enjoyed good food and midnight swimming in the local lagoon.

Our cruise led around the Whitsunday Islands that are a collective of continental islands of various sizes situated within the Great Barrier Reef including e.g. Whitehaven Beach. This 6 km long beach is recognised as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world because of brilliant silica sand that belongs to the purest in the world. Yeah, it was indeed one of climaxes of our cruise!

The sailing was divided into various activities e.g. walking through interior of islands, visiting breathtaking lookouts, swimming or just basking on white beaches.

But most of all we were impressed by snorkelling among many types of local fish. If we were fast enough we could touch several ones after all. Or when the crew threw feeds into the water just next to us we could immediately see decades of medium and hundreds of small fish all around us. Simply amazing!

The trip finished in Airlie Beach again and we felt fantastically relaxed and in a good mood from doing many other activities besides basking on the deck, eating and drinking.

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