If you are in search of a tropical island holiday and don’t want to go too far, exploring Hamilton Island is an ideal family location.
If you are in search of a tropical island holiday and don’t want to go too far, exploring Hamilton Island is an ideal family location, writes Coralie Parsons.
Hamilton Island is part of the Whitsundays in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, and it’s the perfect tropical getaway for families on our own shores. This stunning piece of Australian paradise offers families endless activities, and plenty of family-friendly dining options as well as a kids’ club, Clownfish Club.
School Holiday Island Passport
If you’re planning on visiting during the school holidays, be sure that the kids collect their School Holidays Island Passport. The island passport is packed full of exciting activities for the kids to participate in during their stay, getting each activity stamped off along the way.
Activities include beach games (sandcastle building competitions, beach volley ball), cotton hair braiding and temporary tattoos, crazy bingo, glow-in-the-dark mini golf and a table tennis competition, just to name a few.
During our recent stay, the kids had the opportunity to take part in the Junior Lifeguard Program. This program is run by experienced instructors, facilitating a fun, safe aquatic education program including the introduction to basic CPR. All kids receive a Junior Lifeguard certificate on completion.
Kids’ fun zone
The Kids’ Fun Zone is the place to be to get creative, make new friends, transform into your favourite character while having your face painted, and bop along to the beat of the fine island tunes. Running several days of the week from 3.30pm–5pm, the club is free for all little island guests.
The afternoon can be filled with bouncing around on the jumping castle and making new friends on the island, and taking part in one of the many art and craft activities. Be sure to check Hamilton Island’s weekly activity guide for days and location.
Clownfish Club is Hamilton Island’s childcare centre, which caters to all ages from six weeks to 14 years, offering an abundance of fun activities led by a professional, experienced and friendly team. If you’re looking for a little quiet adult time, even if for a few hours, rest assured, your little explorers in the family will enjoy fun activities at the Clownfish Club.
Take a walk on the wild side
Hamilton Island has its very own Wildlife Park, where you have the opportunity to get up close to meet some of Australia’s most iconic wildlife, including kangaroos, koalas, birdlife and a HUGE crocodile. There are also guided tours. Guests can book ahead and enjoy a delicious breakfast or lunch at the Koolah Café and enjoy a Koala encounter.
When visiting Hamilton Island, pool-time fun could not be any easier with so many options. With the main pool at the heart of the island, it’s the perfect place to round up the family and make new friends with a friendly game of water volley ball, and then enjoy a refreshing drink at the swim-up pool bar. Sails Pool, which is located alongside the Sails Restaurant, is ideal if you’re looking to relax and enjoy the spectacular view of Catseye Beach. Bougainvillea Pool is a personal favourite, which is alongside Catseye Beach. For guests staying at Hamilton Island’s Reef View Hotel, the Reef View Pool is another tranquil spot to relax and enjoy.
Hamilton Island’s idyllic location makes for the perfect destination to enjoy endless water activities, with windsurfing, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, sailing and snorkelling available, just to name a few. There is sure to be a water activity to satisfy every watersport enthusiast.
Day trippin’ White Haven Beach
Only a short 30-minute boat trip from Hamilton Island awaits Whitsunday Islands’ most famous beach, Whitehaven Beach. This natural beauty stretches for over seven kilometres. This is a must-visit; the purest of silica sand and luminescent swirls of turquoise water awaits. Enjoy snorkelling in the crystal-clear warm water, discovering more spectacular beauties below the water.
Hot tip: Embark on a half-day tour if you have very little ones in tow.
Time to dine
Hamilton Island offers a great variety of dining experiences, from a relaxing and casual meal at the Marina Tavern to delicious South-East Asian cuisine at COCA CHU. For guests who are staying at the Reef View Hotel, Palm Bungalows or any holiday home booked through Hamilton Island Homes, be sure to take advantage of the ‘kids stay and eat free’ offer. This is offered to any little guest up to 12 years old. The kids can eat free in participating restaurants when dining with their parents and selecting from the kids’ menu. This was a hit with our kids on our recent trip, all the meals were delicious and we dined at several different restaurants during our stay – just another wonderful incentive to plan your next family holiday to this tropical island paradise.
Getting around Hamilton Island
The most fun and exciting way around the island’s car-free zone is by golf buggy. Golf buggies can be hired through the Island Buggy centre. I would highly recommend reserving your buggy before you arrive; this can be arranged online through the Hamilton Island website.
Having worked in the travel industry for over 20 years – including 15 years mostly spent at 12,000 metres as an international flight attendant – Coralie’s obsession with travel and curiosity about the world continues to thrive as she now embarks on exciting adventures with her family. She enjoys sharing these discoveries on her blog Family Travel Blogger, curating a resource that is insightful, useful and, most of all, inspiring.