How to Escape

The Whitsunday Islands are situated at the heart of the Great Barrier Reef on the tropical north-east coast of Australia.

The Whitsundays are approximately 1,100 kilometres north of Brisbane and 700 kilometres south of Cairns at Latitude 20 south.

There are 74 islands within the Whitsundays. Our Islands and Anchorages form part of the Great Barrier Reef National Park. View our additional maps.

Escape by air

Whitsunday Escape’s charter base is located at Abell Point Marina, Airlie Beach on the Whitsunday Coast mainland. The Airport closest to Abell Point Marina is Whitsunday Coast Airport (also known as Proserpine Airport). It is 25 minutes by taxi or bus from Airlie Beach.

You can catch a ferry from Hamilton Island to Abell Point Marina or Shute Harbour it takes about an hour. We can also arrange for your boat to meet you at Hamilton Island. Flights into Whitsunday Coast Airport and Hamilton Island Airport are available daily from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne with JetStar and Virgin Australia.

As of 1st of April Tiger Airways will be also flying direct to Whitsunday Coast Airport from Sydney.

Mackay Airport has regular direct flights from Melbourne and Sydney. It is about a 1.5 hour drive by hire car or shuttle bus from Mackay to Airlie Beach. Whitsundays to Everywhere provide shuttle buses from Mackay Airport.

Escape by road

All major bus companies service Airlie Beach. Queensland Rail also services the Whitsundays with a train station at Proserpine.

If you drive we can arrange car parking at the marina and under cover, secure security parking is also available (bookings required). There is also a public car park at the marina.

Starting Your Charter

Your bareboat charter commences at noon on the first day and you will need to be off the boat by 11am on your last day. If you return the boat to Hamilton Island or a resort you will need to be off the boat by 10am.

In order to maximize your time on the water, Whitsunday Escape can usually offer an early start. This will allow you to board your vessel and commence your briefing as early as 8am.

We recommend that you arrive the day before your charter commences and overnight in Airlie Beach. This will give you time to unwind from your travels and explore the area. Airlie Beach offers a full range of accommodation and can be booked via our website.

You also have the option of staying on board your boat at the marina the night before your charter commences. This will give you more time to load the boat, do your shopping and familiarize yourself with your vessel before your briefing.

A number of topics of interest are covered on our info… info… page.