This article is sponsored by Tourism Whitsundays.
Honestly, The Whitsundays speak for themselves: the mainland and 74 islands off the coast of Central Queensland are one of Australia’s must-experience destinations for their beauty and one-of-a-kind adventures.
And while picking the best island is an impossible task, it’s hard to go past Hayman Island, the most northerly of the bunch and home to the world-famous InterContinental Hayman Island Resort. It’s tempting to sit back and enjoy the serenity and sun, but a holiday on Hayman Island simply has too much to offer to just lounge around — here are six must-dos led by hotel relaxation.
Soak In The Luxury
For 70 years, Hayman Island has been one of the world’s most lauded luxury getaways, since aviation expert Reginald Ansett opened the Royal Hayman Hotel in 1950. The most recent iteration of the private island’s hotel – the only place to stay on the island – is the InterContinental Hayman Island Resort, the result of a $135 million redesign.
Winning countless awards, the five-star resort offers beachfront stays, secluded hilltop retreats, suites where you can swim into a gorgeous pool from a private balcony, and rooms where you can look out from atop the Coral Sea.
While you’re there, make the most of the resort’s iconic pool before hitting up the bar for a mojito, or snag a spot in one of the poolside cabanas to share (or scoff) some seafood.
Dive Into Beachfront Fun
When you’re in The Whitsundays, make it your mission to spend as much time as you can in that crystal-clear water. Hayman Beach has you covered with unparalleled views and plenty of activities to get you out on the water. Complimentary activities include paddle boarding, kayaking and sailing. Plus, there’s staff on deck to show you the ropes – so you won’t be stuck fumbling with a boat in the shallows.
Treat yourself to a day of self-care at the Hayman Spa & Salon. Book in a clay wrap, massage, deep immersion facial, or gemstone therapy session, then take a dip into the plunge pool before sweating it out in the sauna. There’s also the Bamboo Loft for a private deep soaking bath and steam room, or try a destination spa experience where the spa meets you on a lush beach, in the resort’s Rainforest Cabana or in your own room.
One Heli Of A View
Seeing the Great Barrier Reef by boat is one thing, but a helicopter tour is a whole new experience. Be awed from above as you take in the sheer scope of the Reef’s beautiful maze of coral, as well as the iconic Heart Reef.
Blue Pearl Bay
Pack your runners because a 45-minute hike can take you to a hidden gem on Hayman Island. Take the guided tour through bushland to Blue Pearl Bay, located on the north-western side of the island. Soak in the sights along the way before journeying down to cool off in the bay. Famous for its coral and marine life (including a huge Maori Wrasse fish), Blue Pearl Bay is the ideal place to go for a snorkel.
A Perfect Dining Experience
Whether you’re in the mood for Queensland prawns with saffron butter, eager for a laid-back tapas meal or after a poolside cocktail, Hayman Island’s five restaurants and bars have you covered. From gourmet breakfast to an Asado grill dinner, the resort’s signature restaurant Pacific boasts a gorgeous restaurant-wide view of the ocean to match its top-notch food. Or enjoy wood-fired pizzas and Mediterranean tapas at Amici; a poolside cocktail and poké bowl at Aqua or zesty wok-tossed favourites at Bam Bam; and relax with a flat white at Grove Café.