We are sailing!
Trip Start Oct 13, 2011
48Trip End Jun 07, 2012
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The boat we had paid to go on was called the 'Iceberg’, a 12 person boat on which you were supposedly able to help a bit with the sailing, and get to see the scenery
We arrived on the morning of sailing and, as we expected our fellow passengers were very un-backpackery. We had a youngish German couple, a family of four women and girls from Yorkshire, a couple from the south of England (one of whom grew up in fleet!) and a Chinese couple who spoke almost no English, didn’t like swimming and were prone to sea sickness! And then, of course, there was the crew. Matt was the skipper of the boat, and from the start we thought he was a little bit too tightly strung. And there was Rod, who entertained, cooked, did all the actual work and was generally awesome.
When we set off it was not raining, but it was certainly overcast and very windy. We had to sail for a few hours to the first Island, so after I helped get the main sail up we set off. I’ve never seen a boat pitch about 90° before, but my god is it unsettling! Annabel unfortunately did not cope with this well and retired below deck so as not to be sick
Whilst we were having lunch we sailed to our next destination, and the rain started up. Our second stop was a sand island, around which there was more excellent snorkelling and the promise of big turtles! When we arrived it was pretty funny, as Matt was getting very impatient for everyone to get out into the sea so Ian, one of our fellow passengers, started talking to him like he was a school teacher, which we all enjoyed
After this (which was pretty much the highlight for me), we got back on the boat and sailed to where we would be spending the night. Dinner was again excellent, and then a few of us settled down to drink the alcohol we had bought with us. Though not a party boat a few of us were keen to have a few nice drinks and play some cards. The eating area was pretty small, and not designed for everyone to get round the table, so with Matt offering no interaction as so-called host, quite a few people gave up and went to bed. However me, Annabel, Ian & Joanne (the middle aged couple from the south) and the German couple persevered to play some cards and drink more goon! This was all going swimmingly until we all went off to our cabins to get some more drink and returned to find Matt and Rod bedded down in the only available seats! We were pretty annoyed by this as it was only 9pm! We figured that if the crew were planning on going to bed so early they should have their own rooms, to allow us to socialise. It sounds a little bit harsh, but at the end of the day we paid a lot of money for the trip
Annabel: After an early morning breakfast, again a wonderful spread by Rob, we were dropped off at what is widely considered the main highlight of the Whitsundays, White Haven Beach. It was a really beautiful area of golden sands and crystal waters and wild stingrays swimming around, which we viewed from a high up lookout point before walking down to it. To get to the beach you had to walk through a forested area, where unsurprisingly we got eaten by many mosquitoes! We spent an hour or so walking around on the sand, taking some photos and doing some reading before heading back to the boat ready to sail to our final location. Our final location was another snorkelling spot, again there were some great corals and fish to see here but annoyingly my underwater camera had broken, again!! I was not happy about this, especially as saw some of my favourite fish, but this was not the first time this had happened so I was quite used to not being able to take photos, something I have found is not always a bad thing as I means you really look at things and take them in rather than just taking snap after snap and not even looking at the thing
We got back to Airlie Beach in the evening and just had enough time to have a quick show, grab some dinner and our stuff and head straight off to the bus station to get our final overnight bus to our final location on the East Coast, Cairns.