TRAVEL IS FINALLY HAPPENING AGAIN – THAT CALLS FOR AN OVERNIGHT SAILING TOUR THROUGHOUT WHITSUNDAYS!
My travel Bucket List was getting longer and longer through the Pandemic……I was more than ready to start ticking them destinations off with the travel industry slowly getting back in to full swing!
The Whitsunday was a place I had on my list (admittedly, right down the bottom – I
figured this was an “
I can do that anytime” type vacation) and located not too far from South Australia, to me I believed it to be somewhere I could travel to when I retired.
Albeit – without wanting to travel outside of Australia just yet I started to research holiday destinations within the country before venturing too far from home.
My holiday choices are typically somewhere with warmth, sun, ocean and options to relax and unwind or have a day of adventure.
Being an ex-Travel Consultant I had booked plenty of vacationers to Far North Queensland – The Whitsunday to be specific.
Located 150 km north of Mackay and 300 km south of Townsville the breathtaking Whitsunday Islands which is listed in United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), is home to the Great Barrier Reef – the world’s most extensive coral reef ecosystem.
As we had not travelled for over 2 years we wanted something special to get us back into our “Travelling Shoes” and as I mentioned, being and ex travel consultant was familiar with Ozsail Sailing company and their sailing packages.
OzSail is an independently run family business which employs over 20 crew, they offer a number of choices for sailing the Islands.
I had never been sailing before and had some doubts about sea sickness and visions of being “thrown around the cabin” – Not my idea of a fun vacation!
However with the knowledge I had being a Travel Consultant, and the feedback I had received from previous clients, we decided to give it a go – YOLO!
Ozsail offer a number of different sailing options, from day tours to a 2 night adventures, their packages suit a range of budgets.
After much deliberation we decided to go head on and try the 2 night adventure on the cheekily named “Spank Me Whitsundays sailing and camping adventure”.
This beautiful 82-foot ex-racing yacht sleeps 27 guests and carries on-board 3 crew members in open-plan bunk rooms with mixture of share-singles and share-doubles.
As it was just the 2 of us we opted for the share-double room.
The Spank Me tour typically departs 3 times a week. However, keep in mind departure time can change due to the tides. We were advised we would receive a text message within 72hrs of departure if there were any changes.
All went to plan and we set sail on the Avatar on a late sunny Sunday morning.
I was keen to relax and unwind for the first few hours, mingling with the other guests and cabin crew and finding my “Sea Legs”
With a number of other tourists on-board we shared in the joys of the warm sun, crystal Blue Ocean, clear skies and glorious view that layout before us.
After getting comfortable with the surroundings, we were invited to roll up our sleeves and assist the crew by hoisting the mainsail and dropping anchor at each of our stops over the 2 days.
It was not all work and no play though, at times we opted to chill out on the deck and enjoy the surroundings of the breathtaking Whitsunday Islands.
We all put our chef’s hats on in with catering in the evenings, with the crew offering an amazing variety of delicious meals and plenty of it!
On the first night we slept on-board the spacious vessel then had the option of camping on one of the beautiful Islands (which we did) at Grimston Point on the second night of this tour.
Over the 2 days we visited Whitehaven Beach, Hook Island, Hayman Island, and Border Island.
We snorkelled at Luncheon Bay and Caves Cove (all of our snorkelling equipment, camping gear and all stinger suits/wetsuits are all included).
The sea life we encountered were not just fish, there were Flatback, Green and Leatherback turtles, Rays and beautiful tropical coral life.
The crew were absolutely fantastic, very knowledgeable, and informative and taught us about the history, the sea life and answered any questions we had.
They truly made the trip so much more than just a vacation – It was an educational, fun, adventurous and truly a magnificent experience.
The age demographic on our trip ranged from early 20s to retirees and we all enjoyed getting to know each other, sharing stories and taking turns in relaxing and assisting the friendly crew.
We thoroughly enjoyed our 2 night adventure and I had no issue with sea-sickness (thanks to the OzSail website offering plenty of recommendations on what to – and not – to pack, I did pack sea-sickness tablets!)
We have made lifelong friends and lasting memories and have already started planning our next sailing trip!
I would personally like to thank OzSail for creating our perfect itinerary, assisting us with transfer and location information, keeping us up to date of any changes to our plans and serving us up a wonderful trip!
The ground crew and cabin crew were all very pleasant, happy to go above and beyond to ensure we were comfortable with our travel package and plans.
They have plenty of information on their website which definitely helped us with our questions and planning.
Ozsail also highlight they are willing and able to do whatever they can to get those with issues – such as mobility – on-board (without compromising on safety of course)
If you are like me and LOVE clear blue skies, warm sun and a calm crystal ocean, whether you are after a relaxing kick back and relax day adventure or a couple of nights on an expedition – We recommend – in fact – demand, that sailing The Whitsunday with OzSail be number on your bucket list!
We have been recommending and raving about to anyone that will listen!