Whitsunday Fishing Charter

Whitsunday Fishing charter
Whitsunday Fishing charter


Is it the crystal clear waters of the Whitsundays? or the amazing fish that makes Whitsundays one of the most beautiful places to go fishing? We thought we would find out with a 2 night, 3-day Whitsunday fishing charter with the amazing team at Topnotch Game Fishing.

We headed out from the Port of Airlie Beach on the luxurious Riviera 51, a 17.73m, 3700L fishing boat. The boat called “Topless” is striking. It’s black marlin tower, strikes a great contrast to it’s silver hull. “Topless” is powered by twin 970hp engines. That allows a cruising speed of 24 knots and a top speed of 33 knots, allowing us to quickly get out to our destination the Outer Reef.

We departed early on the first day 6:30am as the sun was coming up. We had great opportunities to take some great photos of the sun reflecting on Pacific Ocean. As we headed out on our Private Charter. However, our reflexes weren’t quick enough to catch a picture of the whales that we passed as they leapt out of the water, a majestic sight to behold.

The “Topless” has a fully air-conditioned enclosed fly bridge, as well as air conditioning throughout the accommodation perfect to offer shade and relief when the Queensland sun is at it’s hottest.

As we headed off we also had time to settle into our cabins, there were three cabins for guests, one with a double bed, one with bunks, one with triple bunks, whilst the crew stay up stairs. There were also two bathrooms, complete with showers and toilets.

Once we had cleared the main channels and had headed out to the appropriate areas we set our lines to troll out, it was great to catch some fish so early on our first day of fishing. The day continued with many more fish caught and ended with some of our fish filleted, cooked and served for dinner. There is nothing more rewarding that knowing you caught your dinner.

Whitsunday Fishing charter

Topnotch are an all inclusive fishing charter. All we needed to bring were our clothes and toiletries in a soft bag, alcohol, and a camera. They supplied everything else from baits, tackles, snorkeling gear, stinger suits, bed linen, meals, soft drink and water.

What we found was that our Whitsunday fishing charter was so much more than just fishing. They adapt to your needs and requirements. We really enjoyed fishing. But we also wanted to do some sightseeing, so after two days of fishing our last day involved exploring a bit more of the beauty that is Queensland.

Whitsunday Fishing charter

Sightseeing on the Whitsundays

We donned their snorkels, masks and stinger suits and snorkelled amongst the reef, the amazing fish. There is nothing more rewarding than jumping straight off the back of a boat into the clear blue water. We took a visit to Whitsunday Island, home of Whitehaven beach. We were dropped over the hill, a short but very rewarding walk over hill inlet lookout and onto Whitehaven beach.

Whitsunday Fishing charter
Fishing charter Whitsundays

We had such a great time with the team at Topnotch game fishing, Russell and Tom. Was the perfect way to experience the Whitsundays, the perfect way to catch some fish.


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Escape Beach – Hamilton Island

Escape Beach – Hamilton Island

Park your van in Airlie beach and catch a boat over to Hamilton Island for some amazing walks that will not only challenge you, but will leave you wanting to explore more.
There are walks to huge lookouts where you can look over the island, to walks to private beaches where you can enjoy lunch peacefully by yourself.
Make sure you bring lots of water, a phone or camera to take lots of photos and enjoy the peaceful serenity that is The Whitsundays.
Our first walk we did was the walk to Escape beach, there are a few places that you can start your walks from, but we decided to start behind the resort. The walk is approximately 3300 metres each way. For this walk you need to be relatively fit as there are some steep parts, as well as near the end it feels like the track seems to disappear and you are left clambering down the hill to Escape Beach
Most of the way there is uphill so make sure you bring lots of water however the advantage of that is most of the trip back is downhill 🙂
There are great places to stop along the way and catch your breathe whilst you catch the view.
You will see so many beautiful butterflies and other wildlife along the way.
But once you get to the final 200 metres and descend the steep hill to your own idyllic private beach.
We bought our own lunch with us, and sat back on a rock in the peaceful surrounding with no one else in sight, I don’t know if it was the fact we had just walked 3.5kms, but that Lunch was probably my favourite of the whole trip.

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Buffet breakfast – Hamilton Island Wildlife Park

Buffet breakfast at the Wildlife park Hamilton Island

Hamilton Island Wildlife Park signNow there are plenty of places to grab breakfast on the Island, from Cafes and bakeries downtown, to grabbing your own from the local grocery store, the Island has three places that you can enjoy buffet breakfast from Sails at the main resort, to the hotels breakfast but if you want to really enjoy a buffet breakfast on Hamilton Island I suggest the breakfast at the wildlife park.

Now the buffet itself does not have as much selection as Sails, however the pancakes and eggs made to order certainly make up for it.

Each day a chef is their to make your eggs however you like them and unlike other restaurants where you stand their waiting for ages whilst they make your order, you tell the chef your order and your table number and she brings it to you. They arrived beautifully presented.

You sit their overlooking cuddly koalas, and for not much more you can also pay for entry into the wildlife park.

Our children loved the hot pancakes, and the fact their was a huge selection of topping choices from Chocolate, caramel, strawberry, maple syrup, lemon and sugar

Hamilton Island Wildlife Park Coffee

Hamilton Island Wildlife Park Breakfast


Hamilton Island Wildlife Park Breakfast


Hamilton Island Wildlife Park

Hamilton Island Wildlife Park

Hamilton Island Koala Wildlife Park

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Hamilton Island with Children

Hamilton Island, a tropical Oasis

One of our favourite holiday places is Hamilton Island. The only downside to this ideal location is the inability to get your caravan onto the island. However don’t worry leave it over at Airlie Beach, catch a ferry and before you know it you are on a tropical oasis.

Now we love to travel with our four children and Hamilton Island is a favourite for all of them. Why do they/we love it, oh let me count the ways.

1 – You can hire Toys

Forget about packing heaps of toys for $20 for the week hire a great variety of toys from the Clownfish club. (These also included Sand toys, great for the kids at the beach. It was so nice to not have to worry about packing heaps of toys on our trip.

Hamilton Island3

2 – The Clownfish Club

Speaking of the clownfish club, as soon as we went to pick up our bag of toys our children decided that they wanted to go to the Clownfish club. This is a Holiday Child care environment for children from 6 weeks – 14 years of age.

They have morning tea, afternoon or full day sessions available. Each Morning or afternoon session includes a different fun activity. The fees includes morning tea, lunch and Afternoon tea, depends on what time you are there.

Our kids loved it and kept asking to go back, (they still ask to go back weeks later) they went to two half day sessions and made chocolates one day, and did a craft activity the other day.

We used this opportunity to go on a couple of long walks that would be too hard with four children aged, 2, 3, 8, and 10 in tow.

This was our first time using a holiday kids club and definitely won’t be the last.

3 – Kids eat free

If you’re staying at the Reef view hotel, Palm bungalows, or a holiday home booked through Hamilton Island Holiday Homes, they can eat for free with Hamilton Islands Kids Stay & Eat Free offer!

The restaurants, and food are great quality. our children’s favorites were Sails and the Wildlife Hamilton Island Koala cafe for breakfast. Dinner favorite was Tako (Mexican) or Coca chu (South east Asian) for Dinner.

Hamilton Island

4 – Free use of non-motorised Water sports

If you are staying at either the Reef view hotel, Palm bungalows, or book a holiday home through Hamilton Island Holiday Homes you can use all the non motorised water sports for free. Our kids had an amazing time kayaking, snorkeling, and learning how to paddle board. There is also Catamaran’s available, depending on the wind.

Hamilton Island
Hamilton Island

5 – The most enjoyable way to get around – Golf Buggies.

There are very limited cars on Hamilton Island. So instead you have the opportunity to rent a Golf Buggy instead and they are so much fun. We had a great time exploring the island.

Hamilton Island Golf buggy
Hamilton Island

6 – Wildlife

Make sure you check out my other post about Wildlife on Hamilton Island. Our children loved seeing all the wildlife, they had a great time eating breakfast surrounded by Koalas, and seeing fish and sting rays.

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Wildlife on Hamilton Island

What Wildlife can you see on Hamilton Island.

Hamilton Island really is a tropical oasis in the Whitsundays, the perfect place to explore, relax, and unwind. We spent a lovely week exploring all the island has to offer and the wildlife was no exception.
From the cute, the cuddly, to the down right scary you will find some interesting animals. Both in their wildlife park and around the Island.

Starting with the cute.


There are so many beautiful butterflies around the Island. If you decide to go on a walk you will find them all along the trails.


At the wildlife park you can book in to get a photo up close and personal with a Koala. (People over the age of 12 can even cuddle a koala) otherwise just sit back at the wildlife park enjoy the buffet breakfast whilst sitting beside a Koala.

Bush Turkey.

Keep your eyes open as you walk the trails and you might be lucky to see a bush Turkey in the bush below. They moved to quickly for me to take a photo of.


Now if the steep walk up the hill wasn’t enough to get my heart rate racing, the words “careful there is a snake next to you was”. Ok it might have just been a green tree snake but any snake that I come across when walking is one snake to many.


After our run in with a snake, I was even more aware of the slippery things across our path. Numerous times my heart rate skipped a beat as I saw the tail of a lizard in the path beside us.


These cheeky birds are all over the Island and you need to be careful as they will help themselves to your food. You have been warned!

Fruit bats.

We were sitting out on the marina side of the Island late in the afternoon and heard the distinct noise of the fruit bat, when we looked up we saw heaps flying around above.

Other animals you will see in the Wildlife park.

There is a great little wildlife park on the Island. The perfect place for visitors to Australia to get a little taste of our native animals. From Koalas, dingos, kangaroos, lizards, wallabies, turtles and even salt water crocodiles. It gives tourists a little snap shot into our Australian animals.

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Passage Peak

Passage Peak

The walk to Passage Peak is a steep climb with steps that seem to go on for ages but the view at the end makes it all worthwhile. With a great couple of lookouts along the way.

We set out from the hideaway bay entrance which gives you a couple of hundred metre walk before the steps begin, just enough to time to start warming up your muscles before the steps work muscles you had forgotten existed. The walk / climb is about 2kms one way however we decided to walk home a different way to give our knees a little rest from all the steps downhill.

Most of the trip up is steps with a few small respites of more level sections, however the last 950 metres is basically just steps that seem to wind on forever. Probably the most heartbreaking sign is as you are leaving the Turkey nest junction Where the paths all meet and head up the stairs with the sign clearly telling you 950 metres to go, then about 200 metres up the path you are meet with another sign that also reads 950 metres to go.

This was the path where our heartbeats really started racing when we met a snake along our path. (Ok it was a non Venomous green tree snake) but my heart rate still jumped up about 20 beats when I saw the snake slithering only 30 CM’s away.

Before you walk up the final steps to the top there is a great lookout, you wander down (silently thinking to yourself that for every step down is another step I have to walk up) but at the end gives you a great view of Whitsunday Island and the resort. We were also lucky to have a kookaburra in the trees below.

Once we got to the top there are three different lookouts

One that looks out over South East head
Another fantastic walk you can do that is about 7kms round trip.

One that looks out over the Resort

We sat here for ages watching the jet skiers in the waves below, jumping over the waves enjoying not only the fun happening below but the sense of achievement that we had made it up the steps.

And then The peak itself that looks out over the Whitsunday coral sea

We sat and watched as the rain came in across the water a welcome relief from the heat and humidity, as we got ready for the walk back.

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