What’s On In Whitsundays

by John on October 3, 2010

Image of P & O cruise liner off shore at Airlie Beach Whitsundays

Dugong surfacing to look at large P & O cruise liner anchored off shore at Airlie Beach, Whitsundays.

It’s just a couple of weeks before the Whitsunday Reef Festival begins at Airlie Beach. the Festival runs from October 21 through to October 24 with street parades, fashion shows, free outdoor movies and a Gala Fireworks display, sponsored by Porters Whitsunday. This years theme for the Reef Festival is “Party Time” so come along and join in the fun and have a great time.

Last week another big P & O cruise liner, the Pacific Dawn, visited the Whitsundays and Airlie Beach which was packed with visiting tourists. Each and every person we spoke with thought the Whitsundays a very special place, with natural beauty everywhere. It’s a good buzz to see such a large ship anchored off the coast. October will be a busy month with another four cruise liners due to call into Airlie Beach. What a great boost for the business community and our region. It is estimated that each cruise ship visit boosts the local economy by about $1.5 million. The Pacific Dawn delivered 1600 people to our shores, with over 600 taking organized tours to the islands and Great Barrier Reef, while the majority enjoyed Airlie Beach Lagoon, shops and beach market stalls.

The expected October visits are:
Pacific Jewel, Sunday October 3
Pacific Sun, Tuesday October 5
Dawn Princess, Sunday October 17
Rhapsody of the Seas, Saturday October 23

While we were taking a photo of the Pacific Dawn at anchor last Monday, we had the pleasure of talking to two visitors from Canada, who were traveling onboard the Pacific Dawn. they were really impressed with the Whitsundays and thought the tropical weather was perfect. While we were chatting a real bonus raised it’s head just out from the beach. A Dugong was feeding not 100 meters from the Airlie Beach Lagoon, which absolutely amazed the Canadian visitors, and yours truly as well. We were lucky enough to get a photo to prove the Dugong was real. For those that are not familiar what a Dugong actually is, check out Wikipedia for information on the Dugong.

Our photo above shows the Dugong at the bottom right on the image. If you click on the image you can see a larger size. Unfortunately the Dugong didn’t co-operate fully and stay on the surface long enough for a great shot.


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