Whitehaven Beach is arguably one of the most stunning and impressive attractions that Australia has to offer visitors.
Even the most seasoned coastal guests worldwide are stunned when they catch a glimpse of this unique 7km stretch of pristine, bright white sand and luscious foliage. But how many Whitehaven Beach facts do visitors know?
The Whitehaven Beach region is visited by 75,000 people annually from all over the world. We’re not surprised that Whitehaven Beach is rated the 5th best beach globally and we’re proud to have it in our very own backyard! Aside from the pristine coastline and breathtaking turquoise waters, some facts about Whitehaven Beach aren’t well known. Wings are here to discuss 4 Whitehaven Beach facts that will surprise visitors who have been coming to the area for many years.
Whitehaven Beach Sand Facts
Considering it’s the most striking and endearing aspect of the beach, we’ll start with Whitehaven Beach sand facts.
#1 The Sand is 98.7% Pure Silica
The astonishingly white sand of Whitehaven Beach is the most extensive stretch of beach in the Whitsunday region. The sand is 98.9% pure silica, whereas typical beaches have sand with around 95% silica. Silica sand, also known as quartz sand, contains quartz sand grains. Although silica sand is on most shores globally, it is the quartz sand concentration at Whitehaven Beach that gives it the dazzling white colour.
Archaeologists still baffled as to how this level of concentrated silica ended up on Australian shores. Archaeologists believe that silica grains were deposited at Whitehaven Beach millions of years ago, but which tides brought it in remains uncertain.
Not only is the sand impossibly white, but it’s also powdery soft. The texture of the sand at Whitehaven Beach is velvety smooth. Due to the sand's minerals, the grains are finer and contain uneven particles, which is why it is silky to touch.
Best of all, the sand at Whitehaven Beach doesn’t retain heat, which means that at even the hottest time of day in the tropical climate, guests can comfortably walk along the shoreline without burning their feet.
Facts About Whitehaven Beach First Inhabitants
We can’t mention any more Whitehaven Beach Australia facts without acknowledging its first inhabitants. Whitehaven Beach is first and foremost Ngaro country.
#2 The original inhabitants of Whitehaven beach were the Ngaro Aboriginal tribe
There is archaeological evidence that suggests the Ngaro tribe inhabited Whitehaven Beach up to 8,000 years ago. According to Archaeo-anthropologist, Dr Bryce Barker, the Whitsunday people were “a full on maritime people. They hunted large marine animals from very sturdy three-piece bark canoes… Their domain was the sea.” The Ngaro Aboriginal tribe managed to hunt and live sustainably in the Whitsunday Island for thousands of years.
Nara Inlet hosts a Ngaro cultural site, with ancient cave paintings dating back 2,500 years. For more information on the first inhabitants of the Whitsundays, guests are encouraged to visit the Proserpine Museum and the Airlie Beach National Park.
Facts About Whitehaven Beach Water
#3 The clarity of the water at Whitehaven Beach is due to a fine sediment
The turquoise, pleasantly warm waters of Whitehaven Beach are a considerable aspect that draws in tourists from everywhere in the world to Whitehaven Beach. However, there’s a little more to the scattering of light and bright, blue skies that contribute to Whitehaven Beach water's iconic colour.
One of the Whitehaven Beach Australia facts that people aren’t aware of is that the turquoise waters of Whitehaven Beach are the results of ultra-fine sediment suspended in the water of the Whitsunday region. This sediment creates the famous bright turquoise. When you combine this with the bright white sand, the contrast creates a brilliant vibrancy. Whitehaven beach is famed for having the clearest, aqua-blue waters in the world.
Creatures of the Sea Whitehaven Beach Facts
#4 Giant Clams Can Be Found in the Coral Reefs of the Whitehaven Beach
We know that the Ngaro Aboriginal tribe managed to hunt large sea animals for thousands of years sustainably. But did you know that you find giant marine animals at Whitehaven Beach today? Giant clams live among the coral reefs of the Whitsunday region. Whilst rare to find anywhere else in the world, this endangered species grows abundantly in the Whitsunday region. If you'd like to personally see these rare and incredible creatures up close, visitors are able to snorkel and scuba dive from one of the many Great Barrier Reef tours in the region.
A Summary of Whitehaven Beach Facts
Whitehaven Beach is consistently rated as Australia’s most beautiful beach. The sheer brilliance of the beach is well-known; however, we hope you enjoyed getting to know 4 surprising Whitehaven Beach facts throughout this article.
Now that you know the most surprising Whitehaven Beach facts, you’re probably ready for a holiday! If want to spend your next vacation at Whitehaven Beach, contact the Wings experts for multi award-winning charters and tours. Wings Whitsundays Adventures offer a range of Whitehaven Beach tours, including Whitehaven Beach half day tours and Whitehaven Beach day trips.