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Which Island Is The Best To Stay On In The Whitsundays?

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Gabby Boucher
Updated Tue 29 Aug 2023

With 74 islands in the Whitsunday archipelago, there is no shortage of amazing locations to check out! Some islands are uninhabited and rugged whereas some are populated with locals and have five-star resorts. Though you can't stay on every island in the Whitsundays, there are a few incredible options that have accommodations available. No matter where you choose to stay, you'll undoubtedly encounter pristine beaches, epic snorkelling, and lush natural beauty in the Whitsundays!

Hamilton Island

Which Island Is The Best To Stay On In The Whitsundays?

Hamilton Island

There are varying opinions about which island is the best to stay on in the Whitsundays, but many would argue Hamilton Island takes the cake. Hamilton Island is not only the most well-known island in the Whitsundays, but it is the most developed. That means there is a wealth of modern amenities on the island, including resorts, restaurants, cafes, shops, and even a wildlife center. 

Hamilton Island also has its own major marina and airport, so you can book a huge variety of tours to Whitehaven Beach and the Great Barrier Reef from here. Airlie Beach on the mainland is generally the main hub for tourism in the Whitsundays, but Hamilton Island is a close second. You have a few accommodation options, plenty of dining and shopping options, and lots of tours to book. Plus, there are some awesome hikes and beaches that you can enjoy without even having to leave the island!

Hamilton Island

Other Top Islands To Stay On In The Whitsundays

Daydream Island

Though Hamilton Island is the most famous, there are some other resort islands that make for an unforgettable Whitsunday holiday. Daydream Island is right next to Hamilton Island and has a newly refurbished resort with its own Living Reef. This is the largest outdoor aquarium in the southern hemisphere, and is an excellent way to observe the marine life of the reef without getting wet! Daydream Island also has a gorgeous resort with a pool and is a great place to stay for families

Daydream Island

Long Island

Part of the group of Molle Islands, Long Island offers a more relaxing, less touristy getaway. Long Island is quite small and you won't run into too many other tourists while you're there. Palm Bay Resort has tranquil, cozy little beach bungalows and Elysian Retreat offers an eco-friendly, solar-powered getaway. Perfect for couples and honeymooners looking to unwind and recharge, Long Island is another one of the best islands to stay on in the Whitsundays!

Whitsundays Beach

Hayman Island

Hayman Island offers an exclusive, high-end Whitsunday getaway. Located around the northern end of Hook Island near Langford Island, this tropical paradise is surrounded by pristine coral reefs and amazing snorkel sites. Hayman Island is owned by InterContinental Resort Group and the island itself is only open to guests of the luxury resort! You can stay in stunning, adults-only villas and enjoy a bit of seclusion, while also having access to the incredible amenities at the resort. 

Island Resort Whitsundays

Camping On Whitsunday Island 

You can also stay on Whitsunday Island, but the only accommodation option here is camping! Whitsunday Island is known for being the largest island in the Whitsundays and for being the home of the famous Whitehaven Beach. There are some very remote campgrounds on the island where you can immerse yourself in the natural beauty and escape the crowds from all the day boats. This doesn't give you the same comfort of staying on a resort island, but it's great for adventurous travellers who want to have a different type of experience in the Whitsundays!

Whitehaven Beach

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