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Hamilton Island time

2nd June 2011

Sue Johnson from our marketing department recently spent some time on Hamilton Island in Queensland’s Whitsundays.

I must admit that my perception of Hamilton Island was way off. The island has come a long way since the Reefview Hotel first opening in the 1980s.  This Queensland paradise is definitely worth getting to know again.

Where to stay
I stayed with my family in one of the self contained Hamilton Island Holiday Homes.  There is a huge range of homes to choose from.  We went with a 3-bedroom apartment at The Edge which overlooks Dent Island and sees the most magnificent sunsets each evening.  Make sure you’ve got your cheese and wine ready!  This style of accommodation would be best suited to a larger group that doesn’t need the facilities of a resort (eg. an on site restaurant).

The view from qualia

For those that prefer the resort experience there are a few options including the Reefview Hotel, the Beach Club, the Yacht Club Villas and magnificent qualia (one of the Luxury Lodges of Australia).

Getting around
The Holiday Homes include a buggy. If you’re at a resort it’s worth hiring a buggy for the day and doing a self guided tour of the island.  Another option is the free regular shuttle service.

What to do
I was on Hamilton Island for only 3 nights so we decided not to do any day trips.  There is plenty to do on the island itself.  A highlight for my 2-year-old was breakfast with the koalas at the wildlife sanctuary.  For me it was a swim at Catseye Beach and cocktails at sunset on One Tree Hill.  There is also a driving range, shooting range, mini-golf course, world class golf course, a host of fashion and gift shops and some great places to grab a drink so we never found ourselves bored.

Places to eat
Traditionally, if you’re going to an island you’re expecting island pricing and relatively low quality.  This was another thing that surprised me on Hamilton Island.  The Yacht Club offers an outstanding fine dining experience, Romanos Italian Restaurant has quick service and a delicious menu and the fish and chips at the tavern were worth a second serve.

There is a bakery that offers a range of sandwiches and fresh baked bread and Manta Ray Cafe delivers pizza.   For self-catering , the General Store has everything you’ll need.

We thoroughly enjoyed our time on Hamilton Island and can’t wait to head back there again.

Our experiences are only half the story.  Share yours in the comments section below.