Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Whitsunday Islands!

During “study week” my friends Brittany, Sam and I went on a sailing trip to the Whitsunday Islands! This was a very fun experience, but also a cold one. The season of winter is rolling in here, even though its not really cold, its not necessarily beach weather. Despite the weather this trip was a lot of fun!


We got to Airlie Beach in the morning while our sailing trip did not begin until the following day in the afternoon; so we checked into our hostel and went to the lagoon for some sun!

And the fun didn’t stop when the sun went down…

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Morning of our sailing adventure!!
We started the trip off putting all our personal items into trash bags because we could not bring zippers onto the boat. This was quite an interesting start to our trip; imagine three young girls carrying large trash bags around this small town. To say the least we got a couple looks.


After a walk to the marina we were ready to get on the boat, along with about 20 international travelers around our age. As soon as we started sailing, even though we used the motor, many people on the boat started feeling very seasick. Thankfully I did not get too sea sick the first day as we sailed for about 4 hours. Once we docked the boat we had some dinner and just hung out for the rest of the night.

The next morning we were woken up early with the New Horizon wake up call, quite a funny song I wish I could remember it! Then we were off again sailing to Hamilton Island. On this small island is the famous Whitehaven beach. This was a very beautiful island, but it was quite chilly as it was only about 9 am and windy! I didn’t swim, but it was cool to get pictures of the 2nd most photographed area in Australia!!!

Back on the boat we went to go snorkel the Great Barrier Reef! I was very excited for this, although it was very cold!! I was expecting the reef to be really bright and very full like on TV, but I was soon to realize that it is not really like that. This is not because it was dead (dead coral turns white), but that’s just the way it is and a cloudy day doesn’t help either. Overall seeing the Great Barrier Reef was really a great experience. I got to see some really big fish, rainbow fish (LOVE THEM!) and lots of small blue and yellow ones.

That night after dinner everyone was just hanging out on the deck and a dolphin came to say hello!! This was so cool! I got to see a dolphin in the wild! The dolphin kept swimming from one side of the boat to the other for about 10 minutes, it was awesome!

The final day on the boat we were woken up early and headed to another snorkeling site. It was freezing again, but I had to do it. When again was I ever going to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef?! O, and by the way the Great Barrier Reef will be gone in 50 years! Crazy huh? All the tourism is killing the reef; therefore this wonder of the world is going to be short lived.

This basically rounds up our trip! We sailed back to Airlie Beach and said goodbye with our trash bags in hand. 😉


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