Is it true that the best time to see the Whitsundays is in Winter???
Slap bang in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef lays 74 tropical islands collectively known as the Whitsunday Islands. With a majority of these idyllic islands uninhabited and boasting dense rainforest and white sandy beaches, there’s plenty of unspoilt beauty to behold. There’s no doubting why island hopping around the Whitsunday islands tends to champion the very top of every Australia’s East Coast bucket list. These are the same reasons why it appears within every single East Coast package imaginable! The biggest question, why do people recommend that you travel to the Whitsundays in Winter?! Let me answer that question for you…
Let’s face it, the tropical climate of the Whitsundays during the summer months is incredibly unpredictable. Rain and wind can come out of nowhere with little warning. That’s why winter is the ultimate time of year to plan your trip here ; the months between June and October host the lowest rates of rainfall and humidity of the whole year. While you might need a warm jumper for the cooler evenings, you can expect much more consistent sunshine and clear blue skies with an average water temperature of 25 degrees. Doesn’t sound like winter, hey? With beautiful clear weather, lower winds and calm waters, this is the perfect time to jump on board an overnight Whitsundays sailing trip or if you prefer, take a scenic flight over the reef!
During the months of July and September humpback whales migrate north along the East Coast of Australia from Antarctica. They head towards the Whitsundays to make the most of the warm waters. Warmth and shelter from the winds combine to make perfect birthing conditions! So, as well as the chance to see adult humpbacks, minke and pilot whales, there’s a very high chance of seeing their baby calfs playing in their new temporary home! While you can snorkel through the reef with turtles all year round, it’s only through the winter months that you can sail through the beautiful sand islands and get the chance to see these beautiful mammals up close and personal (it’s a free bonus!). Take advantage, stay on an overnight Whitsundays sailing boat and wake up at sunrise for the best chance of spotting them!
‘Stinger Season’ can be a worry when travelling to the Whitsunday Islands between October and May. The high season for irukandji and boxed jellyfish means that it is compulsory to wear a stinger suit when snorkelling. While all boats provide stinger suits all year round, it is deemed safe to swim without them during the ‘winter’ months… yay!