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What Movies Are Filmed In The Whitsundays?

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Talia Jones
Updated Tue 30 Apr 2024

The Whitsundays from above

The Whitsundays is a tropical paradise and makes for the perfect backdrop to any film. It’s no wonder why so many movies have been filmed in this dreamy haven. From romantic comedies like Ticket to Paradise to the action-packed movies Pirates of the Caribbean, plenty of production teams have used the Whitsundays as their filming locations. 

Whether it's Whitehaven Beach, Hamilton Island or the Great Barrier Reef, you can look out for these iconic Whitsunday locations in a range of movies filmed in and around Airlie Beach and the Whitsundays Islands

Here are movies filmed in the Whitsundays.

Love is in the Air (2023)

The principal cast and director of Love is in the Air. Left-to-right: Roy Billing, Steph Tisdell, Adrian Powers, Delta Goodrem, Joshua SassePhoto: Variety Australia

Released earlier this year, Netflix romcom Love is in the Air stars Australian actress and singer, Delta Goodrem where she plays a commercial pilot operating scenic flights around the tropics. Goodrem plays alongside British actor Joshua Sasse who is sent to Australia to shut down Dana’s (Goodrem) family flight business. Love is in the Air was filmed entirely in the Whitsundays. You’ll be able to spot the Hangar Cafe, Whitsunday Airport, Airlie Beach, and the Whitsunday Islands throughout the film. 

Ticket to Paradise (2022)

Two actors laughing in front of a camera with the director beside them
Photo: Mamma Mia

Starring Hollywood superstars George Clooney and Julia Roberts, Ticket to Paradise follows the story of divorced couple, David (Clooney) and Georgia (Roberts) who team up to stop their daughter from marrying too young and making their mistake. The romantic comedy is set in Bali, however it is filmed here in the Whitsundays! The cast and crew used Long Island, Hayman Island, Hamilton Island and Whitehaven Beach to shoot. While filming, the well known actors stayed at Hayman Island’s five star resort and George Clooney hired luxury yacht, Alani to transfer him and his team throughout the Whitsundays. 

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017)

A group of pirates walking on a beachPhoto: YouTube

The fifth instalment of the Pirates of the Caribbean series, Dead Man Tells No Tales stars Johnny Depp and was filmed in the Whitsundays. The plot follows Jack Sparrow’s (Depp) attempt to escape his nemesis, Captain Salazar while trying to capture a trident which will give him power over the seas. The filming location chosen was Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island. To be able to film the scene without any tourists in the background, the production crew hired all the tour boats in the area for the weeks of filming. They even flew in palm trees as they don’t naturally grow on the island - which were then donated to Airlie Beach. Although you’ll only briefly spot Whitehaven Beach in the film, it’s definitely worth watching to look out for it! 

Fool’s Gold (2008)

A man and a woman standing on a beach looking at each other
Photo: Tourism and Events Queensland

Hollywood megastars Matthew McConaughey, Kevin Hart and Kate Hudson feature in Fool’s Gold. The film is essentially a treasure hunt where divorcees Tess and Finn (McConaughey and Hudson) reluctantly team up to search for gold that was lost in a 1917 shipwreck. The production team decided that the Whitsundays was the perfect place to replicate the Caribbean where the film is set. You’ll be able to spot the Whitsunday Islands and Whitehaven Beach in plenty of the backdrops. They also used Port Douglas (further north near Cairns) to shoot the ‘town’ scenes. 

Spiderhead (2022) 

A plane flying over white sand and the oceanPhoto: YouTube

Spiderhead is a Netflix science fiction psychological thriller starring Chris Hemsworth and Miles Teller. The film follows the story of inmates in an expensive prison who participate in drug experiments that alter their minds. The scenes in which you can see the Whitsunday Islands are when the characters are either travelling between destinations via boat or plane. You can make out Hill Inlet near Whitehaven Beach in one of the flight scenes. 

Muriel’s Wedding (1995)

A group of girls in swim wear standing by a pool looking angry
Photo: Londoner in Sydney

Australian classic, Muriel’s Wedding stars Toni Collette and Rachel Griffiths. The film focuses on Collete’s character, Muriel, who is the target of ridicule so she fights to prove herself by having a glamorous wedding and moving out of her small hometown. Parts of the film are set on ‘Hibiscus Island’ which is actually Hamilton Island. You’ll be able to spot the main resort pools on the island and the timber bridges over the pools in the background. 

TV Shows filmed in the Whitsundays

It’s not just movies that used the Whitsundays as filming locations. Several television shows have recently chosen the region to shoot. 

Below Deck Down Under (2022)

A man on a boat talking into a walkie-talkiePhoto: YouTube

Below Deck is a reality TV series that originated in the United States and has since made its way to Australia. Season one of Below Deck Down Under is set entirely in the Whitsundays. The show follows the lives of crew members working on a superyacht and the chaos that follows. If you’re a fan of reality television filled with comedy and drama, then definitely give Below Deck Down Under a watch. You’ll be able to spot Airlie Beach’s Coral Sea Marina, main street and local venues. Not to mention, the tropical islands and the Great Barrier Reef too!

Down to Earth with Zac Efron (2022)

Three men on a boat, two are in scuba gear
Photo: Mars

Netflix’s Down to Earth follows Hollywood actor Zac Efron’s travel adventures where he focuses on promoting sustainability and learning about various natural environments. He ventures to Iceland, France, the Amazon, and of course, Australia. The entire second season of his show is set in Australia and the third episode, ‘Great Barrier Reef’ is shot in the Whitsundays. In the episode, Zac and his team travel from Airlie Beach to the Great Barrier Reef where they learn about the coral restoration techniques and what people are doing to save the reef. Definitely an eye-opening show to watch!

Black Snow (2023)

Travis Fimmel as Detective James Cormack in Black SwanPhoto: Ausfilm

Black Snow is an Australian crime drama television show set in a seaside town in north Queensland. The show features Vikings star Travis Fimmel who plays a detective investigating a cold case murder. Although the show was filmed in the Whitsundays, it's not the islands the production team were interested in. They filmed in the rural community of Proserpine, located 25 minutes from Airlie Beach. During filming, Travis Fimmel stirred up the town when he was spotted at several popular venues including the Airlie Beach Hotel and Magnums pub. 

Travel like the Stars

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If you want to be like the stars and visit the Whitsundays, we can make your dreams come true! We have a wide range of boat tours that will see you and your loved ones travelling throughout the Whitsunday Islands. From day tours to the reef, to overnight maxi yachts to luxurious superyachts, you can feel just like you're in a Hollywood movie set in the Whitsundays!

Talk to our travel experts via our live chat who will help you plan your visit to this spectacular, film-worthy destination!

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