The view from the plane as you approach Hamilton Island has to be one of the more spectacular flight descents in the world. Over the wing of the aeroplane you can spot dazzling turquoise sea dotted with the lush green islands which make up the Whitsundays.
From the tiny airport it’s a short five minute mini bus or golf buggy ride to one of Hamilton Island’s hotels or rental houses. I was visiting for a work conference and stayed at the Reef View Hotel which is one of the cheaper options on the island. The tall towers of the hotel look pretty dated from the outside but the rooms have been recently revamped and are clean and fresh with a stylish, understated decor in tones of white and sand.
The rooms are huge as well with plenty of room for two Queen size beds. You could easily fit a whole family in the standard sized room. The main feature of the hotel though is the stunning view from every room. My room was on an upper floor and the blue sea sparkled every morning from my balcony fringed by palm trees as yachts bobbed along the waves.
Breakfast at the Reef View Hotel is a noisy buffet affair. Barista made coffee is an extra charge and the eggs were on the rubbery side but the setting overlooking the hotel pool is nice. The Reef View Hotel was very convenient but for a return visit I’d be keen to splash out on a visit to Qualia, Hamilton Island’s luxury resort, or hire a house for a visit with family.
I was initially worried about feeling trapped on the island particularly when it came to food but was pleased to discover there are plenty of food options from high end restaurants to cheaper takeaway places like the bakery and fish and chip store. The recent opening of an excellent IGA supermarket makes self catering an good option.
Being able to fly directly into Hamilton Island is a major bonus. It made a work trip convenient but the idea of landing directly at your destination certainly also appeals for stress free holidays which start pretty much as soon as you step off the plane from that fabulous descent.
- You can fly direct to Hamilton Island with Qantas and Virgin.
- There are no cars on Hamilton Island with free transfers provided to the hotels or you can hire golf buggies to get around. I made use of the transfers and just walked everywhere else.
- The island is still recovering from Cyclone Debbie in March this year which temporarily closed the island and some of the trees are looking pretty battered and sparse. That said all the buildings appear to be fine and if you didn’t know there had been a cyclone it would be hard to tell.
Details: Reef View Hotel, Hamilton Island, Whitsundays, Queensland
Damage: Pricey. From $370 a night.
Kids: Great for kids. Free cots and high chairs at the Reef View Hotel. You can fit baby capsules on the golf buggies.