The Changing Face of Airlie Beach

If you’re new to a region, what better way to get to know it than with a guided tour? Makes sense to check it out with an expert.

Now, imagine ramping it up on a jet ski in one of the most beautiful places on Earth – the Whitsundays!

That combination is precisely why Whitsunday Jet Ski Tours’ are award winning!  The team operate out of Airlie Beach.

Their tours range from an hour-long Airlie Adventure to the half-day Ultimate Island Trek with a stop-over at Whitsunday Island… one of 74 jewels floating in the big blue Coral Sea.

It’s not all high-speed action. During the tour, there’s the chance to slow down and spot local marine life – like the resident sea turtles of Turtle Bay, not far from the marina.

Whitsunday Jet Ski’s Asher reckons the wildlife encounters come in ‘large’ too – dugongs and humpbacks.

“We’ve got whale season coming up, so you know the guys have got pictures in the past of people sitting on a jet ski and a whale breaching behind them you know,” he said. “Pictures you’ll never get anywhere else or ever again.”

Back on dry land, Paradiso Restaurant and Rooftop Bar is Airlie’s “place to be”.

There’s a stellar cocktail selection and the food menu is equally delicious. This family-owned spot peppers love into each dish.

Case in point – locally-caught macadamia-encrusted barramundi with homemade lime and dill gnocchi – hand-crafted by the grandfather of the family, Angelo.

Authenticity reaches new heights with some of Angelo’s recipes spanning six generations!

It’s another example of the changing face of Airlie – no longer the mere gateway to reef and island experiences, but a destination in its own right.

You’ll need more than a day to check out this stunning region and there are plenty of accommodation options.  Our tip is Mirage Whitsundays.

Take your pick of one, two or three- bedroom apartments, villas and penthouses. All have views out to those neon-blue Whitsunday waters.

There’s one final tasty temptation – Mirage Whitsunday’s Whisper Gin Bar.

It’s Airlie’s only gin bar – with a “gindex” of 160 blends from which to choose.

Start planning your own Airlie Beach and Whitsundays adventure.

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