When Is the Best Time to Visit Whitsundays?
Wondering when the best time to visit the Whitsundays is? Here's your ultimate guide to planning the dates of your Whitsundays holiday.
If you're wondering when is the best time to visit Whitsunday's beautiful region, you've come to the right place. Wings are the leading experts in all things Whitsundays travel and exploring the beautiful region like a local. Operating and providing adventure and holiday tours across the Whitsundays, the Great Barrier Reef and Airlie Beach, years of experience of travelling this luxuriously beautiful part of Queensland means that we are well acquainted with the best time to go to Whitsundays and what you can expect from each season.
When Is the Best Time to Visit Whitsundays Regions?
The Whitsundays is a North Queensland Paradise, just off Australia's east coast. The subtropical weather of the Whitsundays means that many months of the year provide exceptional weather to go swimming, hiking, sailing and scuba diving in lukewarm waters.
But when is the best time to visit Whitsundays?
An essential element to consider when deciding when is the best time to visit the Whitsundays is the weather. Located on the same tropical latitude as Honolulu and Mauritius, the Whitsundays region experiences comparable heat and offers that an equivalent never-ending-summer feel. The Whitsundays has an average daily temperate of 27.5 degrees Celsius; featuring a pleasant water temperature of 25 degrees Celsius throughout the year.
If you're wondering when the best time to visit Whitsunday's region is, you're not alone. The Whitsundays is one of Australia's most coveted holiday destinations, rivalling lavish international hot spots like Bora Bora and islands of the Turks & Caicos. The crystal-clear waters lapping at pristine white sands make the Whitsundays an idyllic holiday destination for those who enjoy sailing, swimming, snorkelling, scuba diving and beach-side exploration.
The best time to go to Whitsundays depends on what kind of holiday you'd like to experience in the Whitsundays.
Summer in The Whitsundays
Many consider the best time to visit Whitsundays is during the summer break. During the summer months of December, January and February, the subtropical climate of North Queensland mean that the Whitsunday region experiences hot, humid weather. Summer in the Whitsundays is characterised by sweltering heat, balmy nights and the need for excessive sun protection.
Summer temperatures reach up to 30 degrees Celsius during the day, with the water maintaining a warm 28 degrees on average. Considered to be Queensland's wet period, summer in the Whitsundays can be extremely humid with frequent rain showers throughout the season. However, showers pass very quickly, and the sun always makes an appearance during summer days. The Whitsundays region is also home to some of the best ways to cool off from sweltering heat, with an abundance of freshwater creeks, waterfalls, crystal-clear coves and swimming lagoons.
Winter in The Whitsundays
During winter, the Whitsundays will experience more comfortable temperatures than summer. The average highest temperatures are around 24 and 25 degrees Celsius. If you're not limited by having to take your holiday during the summer holidays, winter is a great, if not the best time to visit Whitsundays regions. Winter is also a lot drier than summer, with winter sun heating the days and the evenings following with cool, crisp temperatures. Many of our customers come back every winter to experience quieter Whitsunday charter experiences. However, if you're looking for warm swimming conditions, the water in winter can often be a bit chilly and not as comfortable for floating, snorkelling and diving than in other months of the year.
Winter in the Whitsundays is also incredibly special because of the annual migration of humpback whales. Every winter, the Whitsundays is the host to hundreds of humpback whales arriving from their yearly migration from Antarctica. If getting a chance to see one of the oldest living animals on the planet is one of your bucket list items, plan your next Whitsundays holiday in winter!
The Best Time of Year to Sail Whitsundays
In terms of the best time of year to sail Whitsunday's beautiful islands, boating enthusiasts generally agree that spring is a fantastic time to enjoy sailing around the region. The tide patterns during September, October and November result in calm waters, lovely full moon nights and clear skies; great for holidaymakers to enjoy from the deck of a boat.
During spring, the ocean is calm, and the winds are light. Sailing the Whitsundays is ideal during September, October and November because of the consistently sunny weather, low humidity, light trade winds and excellent conditions for frolicking from island to island. If you're looking to hire a bareboat charter in the Whitsundays, spring is a very comfortable and ideal time to book your sailing trip.
In saying that, sailing through the Whitsundays is ideal at any time of the year. With protected winds and endless amounts of sun, the quintessential tropical weather of the Whitsundays is the perfect environment for sailing.
Whitsundays in November & September
November, the end of spring, is a fantastic time to visit the Whitsundays. Whitsundays in November is the embodiment of luxurious holidaying; warm days, balmy evenings, lukewarm crystal-clear water and clear skies. Whether you're going sailing, snorkelling, hiking or sunbaking, this time of the year accommodates for all of the outdoor activities that characterise a holiday in the Whitsundays.
Many locals cite September as the best time to go to Whitsundays. Not only is the weather a perfect balance between summer and winter, but the water is beginning to warm up. The beginning of September generally does not coincide with any school holidays, meaning there are fewer people around and holiday-crowds are significantly reduced during this period. For this reason, many believe that September is the best time to visit Whitsundays islands and regions.
The Worst Time to Visit Whitsundays
Let's be honest. There really isn't ever a bad time to visit the Whitsundays. The idyllic slice of paradise on Queensland's coastline is a dream to visit, all year round. However, for the sake of deciding which month of the year you should book your holiday, we'd say that the worst time to visit Whitsundays would be during stinger season if you're set on spending all of your time in the water. Or, during the school holidays if you're after a kid-free holiday!
School holidays are notoriously busy in Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday region. Between the calm waters and abundance of outdoor activities, the Whitsundays is the perfect place for a family-friendly holiday. During this period, you may notice that restaurants are busier, tour operators offer extended hours and crowds begin to swell. If you have the luxury of being able to travel outside of the school holidays, we recommend doing so, to secure the beaches and hot spots all to yourself.
Stinger season refers to the time of the year in which Irukandji and box jellyfish are often populating the waters. Generally running from October through to May, those in the water are at risk of being stung by a jellyfish in the Whitsundays. However, the majority of operators and tour provides (Wings included) will offer complimentary use of stinger suits to protect those who want to spend time in the water.
In saying that, it is perfectly safe and comfortable to travel to the Whitsundays during stinger season (and school holidays). In fact, the most popular and - in our opinion - the best time to visit Whitsundays coincide with the end of stinger season.
Airlie Beach Cyclone Season
The subtropical climate of Airlie Beach is prone to experiencing cyclones between January and March. Because of its position on the coastline of Australia, Airlie Beach cyclone season means that while relatively safe, there is a possibility of cyclones during this period. The likelihood of a cyclone directly impacting the mainland is low, and one affecting the Whitsunday islands is even lower.
What's more, Queensland has an excellent cyclone warning system that relies on advanced technology to forecast potentially dangerous weather conditions. As locals, we are always informed of potential cyclones weeks before they pose any threat and always have at least several days of warning if it looks like the Whitsundays will be directly affected. If you have booked your holiday during Airlie Beach Cyclone Season, don't stress. In the case of an emergency, you will be afforded time and warning to safely evacuate the area or rebook your holiday.
When Is the Best Time to Visit the Whitsundays?
If we had to choose the best time to visit the Whitsundays region, we'd say September or November. The combination of cooler evenings with lingering sun rays that offer a perpetual almost summer feeling is what makes spring the best time to visit the Whitsundays. Clear skies, comfortable temperatures, no stingers and fewer crowds mean that September, October and November are the ideal months to visit Airlie Beach and the Whitsundays. During spring, we operate regular trips and Whitsunday tours from Airlie Beach for full-day, half-day and overnight experiences.
However, and we can't stress this enough, the Whitsundays is an absolute dream to visit all year round. The subtropical climate of Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday means that the region is always warm, sunny and begging to be explored.
Book Your Whitsundays Adventure with Wings
Wings Whitsundays Adventures offer year-round tours and guidance through the Whitsunday Islands, the Great Barrier Reef and Airlie Beach. Whether you're after a sun-soaked relaxing holiday, an explorative island adventure, or a family-friendly Whitsundays tour, we've got you covered at Wings.
With plenty of tours, vessels and options to choose from, we'll take you to the best areas of the Whitsundays, per the season, the landscape and the requirements of the natural surrounds. Our tours depart regularly from Airlie Beach, with a team of Whitsunday locals that love taking visitors on an adventure of a lifetime around the beautiful Whitsunday region. Book your tour today with Wings to enjoy the slice of paradise that is the Whitsunday Islands.