UNFURL THE SAILS: Winter is Queensland’s Season of Sailing.
UNFURL THE SAILS: Winter is Queensland’s Season of Sailing.

Skipper your own adventure

FORGET winter with a Whitsundays Season of Sailing getaway.

With temperatures plummeting further south, the Whitsundays is cruising into winter with some special Season of Sailing holiday deals.

Now in its second year, the Season of Sailing aims to attract visitors to events on the water from now until September along the Queensland coastline.

Sailing conditions in the Whitsundays are near-perfect in winter with daytime temperatures averaging 27C and the water around 24C.

The Season of Sailing website offers a whole range of Whitsundays getaways where you can enjoy being part of a world-famous race week, learn to sail or “drop anchor” at a waterfront resort.

Time your visit to coincide with Airlie Beach Race Week (August 12-18, 2011), Hamilton Island Race Week (August 19-27 2011) or earlier or later at a more convenient time as most packages are valid throughout the year.

From tropical island getaways to bareboat adventures, the Season of Sailing packages make it easy for landlubbers or keen sailors to enjoy a wide range of boating experiences.

An all-inclusive two-night luxury cruise on Descarada Charters costs from $575 per person per night, or visit Hamilton Island, the home of Wild Oats X1, from $159 per person per night, staying in a Palm Bungalow and including breakfast. Choose from a wide range of sailing experiences departing the island, or enjoy world-class facilities including the Yacht Club, marina, golf course, day spa and more than 10 restaurants.

Choose from an enticing range of Airlie Beach accommodation, including the absolute waterfront Marina Shores, At Waters Edge Resort nestled in the hillside with stunning Coral Sea views or the boutique At Waterfront Whitsundays Retreat. All three are offering guests a free bonus night as part of their stay.

Queensland Yacht Charters has a range of quality vessels (sail or powered) with a choice of bareboat or fully skippered cruises.

The stay 10, pay 7 deal is great value from just $470 per person.

The only yacht charter company based on Hamilton Island, Sunsail’s fleet of more than 30 yachts and catamarans is available for crewed or bareboat sailing experiences. Explore the calm waters of the Whitsundays and the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef from $99 per person per day.

The centrally-located Toscana Village Resort’s spacious apartments cost from $360 per person twin-share for five nights with the resort’s special Season of Sailing stay 5, pay 4 deal.

The absolute oceanfront Coral Sea Resort’s stay 4, pay 3 deal includes breakfast daily. For more information on Queensland’s Season of Sailing and to book packages, visit the Queensland Holiday website.

2011 Queensland’s Season of Sailing events

Etchells Australasian Winter Championships (Sunshine Coast) – June 9–12

Brisbane to Keppel Tropical Yacht Race – August 5-8

Airlie Beach Race Week –August 12-18

Hamilton Island Race Week – August 19-27

Magnetic Island Race Week –September 1-6

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