Cairns or Whitsunday Islands


Feb 9th, 2006, 04:39 PM
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Cairns or Whitsunday Islands

My husband and two sons (ages 13 and 11) are living in Melbourne for a few months and want to visit the Great Barrier Reef during school break in March. We have about 6 or 7 days. We can't decide between Cairns and the Whitsunday Islands, though I'm leaning toward Cairns so that we can see the Rain Forest. We don't need a "sitting by the pool" vacation - we spent 4 days in Fiji in early January. Obviously, we can snorkel from either place. What else is there to do?

A few more random questions: Can we sail in both places? How many days should I spend? Is 6 too many? too few?

Any suggestions for accommodations? We would like something nice but not top of the line.
AndiK is offline  
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Feb 9th, 2006, 04:51 PM
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I should have made it clearer that I meant the Cairns area generally. We probably won't stay in Cairns, but near Cairns or in or near Port Douglas.
AndiK is offline  
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Feb 10th, 2006, 03:42 AM
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If you go to Cairns you will be able to check out the Daintree, and maybe go up to the hinterland (Atherton Tablelands). There's the cultural place outside Cairns and the railway up to Kuranda. There's a crocodile farm and all that sort of tourist stuff.

But you mention sailing. That would be tricky out of any of the FNQ ports.

So I'd go to the Whitsundays. Sailing - easy. And there is now, I believe, a "lagoon" at Airlie Beach where you can bask and swim without worrying about those pesky sharks and stingers.
Also outings you can take to little known national parks where you take your chances.

Does an outing to somewhere with natural beauty count as "something to do".

Depends on what constitutes "entertainment" for your children and only you will know that.
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