20 Things To Do In Hamilton Island

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Hamilton Island is the most well-known and popular of all the 74 Whitsunday Islands, with around 500,000 people visiting it every year. Owned by the family of Bob Oatley, the Australian winemaker, businessman and yachtsman who bought it in 2003 for $200 million – he also owned Wild Oats XI, which won the Sydney to Hobart race nine times – the island has a wonderful marina, airport and incredible natural beauty.

For visitors, it also has a fantastic range of attractions to keep you entertained. So, whether you plan on going there for a day trip or a longer annual holiday, there are plenty of activities you can do to ensure your visit is as enjoyable as it can be. I’ll run you through 20 of the best things to do on Hamilton Island.  It doesn’t matter if you are a solo traveller, a couple on a romantic getaway or a family enjoying  some quality time together, there should be something on this list of interest for everyone.

Hamilton Island, Queensland

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20 Things To Do In Hamilton Island

1- Relax On Catseye Beach

Hamilton Island is home to several beautiful beaches, but Catseye Beach should be the first one you visit.

On the island’s resort side, this crescent-shaped beach offers stunning views of Whitsunday’s forests and reefs.

It is easy to get to via a short buggy ride or walking distance from most parts of the island and is free to use, although rental equipment prices might vary.

Once there you can choose to relax under the shade of palm trees, stretch out on a towel or rent a beach umbrella or sun lounge and watch yachts sailing around the Fitzalan Island Reef.

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Alternatively, you can take a gentle stroll along the sand, or partake in various watersports activities.

These include swimming in the shallows, kayaking along the coastline, skippering a catamaran, or snorkelling and exploring the picturesque shoreline.

2- Sip Cocktails By The Pool

Fresh Cocktails In Hands
Sipping cocktails by the pool is one of the best things to do in Hamilton Island to melt away the stress.

If you don’t fancy the beach why not experience the ultimate holiday relaxation by sipping on a classy cocktail while lounging by the pool?

Hamilton Island is a brilliant destination to indulge in some refreshing drinks as you float in the pool and take in the breathtaking tropical views.

While many resorts have their own pools in which you can do this, the island’s main pool is a public swimming pool situated within the centre of the island.

Once there, you can order a drink from the swim-up bar, unwind on a comfortable lounge chair, and enjoy the holiday vibe of island life to the fullest.

3- Hire A Yacht

Yacht Racing Around The Whitsunday Islands Great Barrier Reef
Hire a yacht best thing to do on Hamilton island.

While on Hamilton Island, take the opportunity to hire a yacht and explore some of the other places around the Whitsunday Islands.

One of the best companies to do this with is Sunsail Yacht Charters.

They will provide you with a seaworthy vessel to navigate your way to places like Hook Island, Daydream Island, Gloucester Island or Keswick Island.

If you don’t know how to sail you can even hire a skipper to take you around on an unforgettable adventure – which arguably peaks at sunset when dusk hues illuminate the sky.

4- Go Jet Skiing, SUP Or Kayaking

Man Drives Red Jet Ski On Turquoise Sea On A Blue Day
Jet-Skiing, SUP or Kayaking fun things to do in Hamilton Island.

The serene, turquoise waters that define the Coral Sea make an ideal destination to indulge in water-based activities like jet skiing, stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking.

Catseye Beach is a great starting point for adventures like this, with several stands there offering rentals for kayaks, paddleboards and windsurfing equipment as well as snorkelling gear.

Moreover, close to the marina, you can also make reservations for jet ski and water ski tours with some of the local tour operators.

5- Take In The View From Passage Peak

If you are into breathtaking views and don’t mind a bit of cardio in the process then you should make a point of hiking up Passage Peak.

This grade three, 4.5 km course should take around two hours to complete, but along the way you will be able to take in scintillating views of ‘Hammo’ (as the locals called it) as well as the Coral Sea and the surrounding islands.

Pro tip: Start this early in the morning before the heat of the day and take plenty of water with you.

Don’t forget your camera!

6- Partake In A Buggy Treasure Hunt

A Row Of Golf Buggies On Hamilton Island
Going on a buggy treasure hunt is one of the fun things to do in Hamilton Island Australia.

Cars are not allowed on Hamilton Island, so to get around you’ll probably need to drive a golf buggy.

However, if you want to add a bit of excitement to your ride, join the Buggy Rally.

To take part you will need to register with the Sports Club, which you will find adjacent to the Reef View Hotel, on the resort side of the island.

You can participate in teams of four or less, and your task is to drive around the island and collect answers to a series of questions about Hamilton Island.

Once completed, you submit your responses at the Sports Club, and the first-place team will receive prizes.

It’s a lot of fun and a great way to see the island.

7- Treat Yourself To A Spa Day

A Woman In A Day Spa Relaxing On A Massage
Treating yourself to a spa day is one of the relaxing things to do in Hamilton Island.

If you want to relax and rejuvenate yourself on Hamilton Island, then you should definitely consider visiting Spa Wumurdaylin.

This highly recommended treatment centre offers a wide range of massages, body wraps, facials and body scrubs, all of which incorporate premium-quality Australian beauty products into the service.

It is worth noting the spa can get busy during the peak season, so you should book your treatments in advance.

If you can’t get into Spa Wumurdaylin, many of the luxury resorts on Hamilton Island have their own spas you can visit.

8- Explore The Trails

Should the thought of traversing Passage Peak be a bit daunting, there are eight other trails on Hamilton Island you can choose to hike.

Each of them offers varying levels of difficulty to accommodate all levels of fitness.

Between them, these hikes will take you to hidden coves, scenic lookouts atop mountains and other parts of the island most visitors don’t get too.

Again, take plenty of water with you and wear comfortable walking shoes, and the earlier in the day you can do the hikes the better.

9- Take A Scenic Flight

It is nice to see Hamilton Island on the ground, but it is something else to see it from the air.

As Hamilton Island has its own airstrip, you can easily book helicopter or seaplane tours to see the island and the surrounding sites of Whitehaven Beach and the Great Barrier Reef from a bird’s eye view.

There really is no better way to gain a full appreciation of the stunning natural beauty of the Whitsundays than from the sky.

10- Enjoy Sunset Views From One Tree Hill

Hamilton Island is a brilliant place to watch the sunset and arguably the best place to do this is at One Tree Hill.

This lofty setting provides sensational panoramic views, and can be reached via a 20-minute stroll from the marina.

It is also a short ride on a golf buggy for those with more limited time or mobility.

While there, consider consummating the experience by indulging in one of the offerings from One Tree Hill Sunset Cocktails, which you can purchase daily in the early evening.

Art lovers will be well served during their visit to Hamilton Island.

The island has two excellent galleries – Foots Artwork and Hamilton Island Art Gallery.

While both of these galleries display exquisite works of art created by local artists, the latter also offers interactive art classes which you can book in advance.

12- Go Diving Or Snorkelling

Man Snorkeling Underwater On A Reef With Soft Coral
Diving and snorkelling are top things to do in Hamilton island.

For those fascinated by the breathtaking underwater world beneath Hamilton Island, it is worth booking a diving or snorkelling tour.

Local operators can take you to any one of a number of excellent diving spots in the area, appropriate to your skill, age and experience level.

Depending on where you go, you may be able to see dolphins, whales, manta rays, turtles and all manner of tropical fish.

If you are serious about taking up diving as a hobby you can even take a PADI Open Water Certification course.

13- Enjoy Quad Biking

Quad biking is a fun activity on Hamilton Island that you should make a point of doing.

Those visiting with children should take them along to Quads for Kids.

This exceptional short quad circuit is designed specifically for young ones who want to experience an adrenaline rush.

For adults or families meanwhile, there is a really cool ATV tour that takes you on a guided, off-roading tour  at the Resort Lookout.

On it you can traverse scenic trails that offer 360-degree panoramic views across the Whitsundays.

14- Explore The Hamilton Island Wildlife Park

Koala In A Tree
Exploring the Hamilton Island Wildlife Park is one of the things to do on Hamilton Island with toddlers.

Animal lovers should check out the Hamilton Island Wildlife Park.

This small yet fascinating wildlife sanctuary is home to a diverse range of native Australian animals such as kangaroos, wallabies, koalas and dingoes.

Visitors can choose to do a guided tour or opt instead for a close-up encounter with various mammals, reptiles, birds and marsupials.

15- Enjoy A Delicious Meal

You are going to need to eat during your time on the island, so thankfully there are plenty of good choices available.

One of the best though is the Sails Restaurant, which you will find in the Hamilton Island Resort Centre.

It offers a terrific al fresco dining area that showcases wonderful Coral Sea views and serves delicious burgers, seafood dishes and delightful cocktails.

All of which make a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon.

16- Go On A Crocodile Safari

Crocodile In Water
Going on a crocodile safari is one of the top things to do on Hamilton island.

When you fancy something a little bit different from sunbathing consider booking on to a crocodile safari.

These awesome family-friendly boat cruises take into the wetlands and estuaries of the Whitsundays, where you have a good chance of spotting saltwater crocodiles, as well as other mammals, native birds, marine animals and reptiles.

This excursion is an all-weather activity, so, it is a good thing to consider on a rainy day.

Whitsunday Crocodile Safari is at Glen Isla Rd, Glen Isla QLD 4800.

17- Play A Round Of Golf

Golf Ball Go To The Hole
Go Golfing top 10 things to do in Hamilton island.

Love golf? Then you’ll love the opportunities at Hamilton Island.

The island has a world-renowned golf course surrounded by the spectacular backdrop of the Whitsundays.

The 18-hole course is situated on a private island accessible only by boat, making it an exclusive destination for golfers.

Tee off slots are limited, so you will need to book in advance to secure yourself a spot.

18- See The Stars

One of the best things to do at Hamilton Island is go stargazing.

Due to its remote location and absence of light pollution, the island is an ideal destination for stargazers.

Best of all, you don’t need to make any special arrangements to witness the night sky light up with shining stars.

Simply find a nice spot to set yourself up after sunset and watch the sky transform above you.

Consider going to One Tree Hill, Catseye Beach or taking a boat charter out to the Coral Sea for the best views of the cosmos in all its glory.

19- Enjoy A Day Trip To Whitehaven Beach

Whitehaven Beach, Whitsundays, Queensland
Taking a trip to Whitehaven Beach is one of the free things to do on Hamilton Island.

Catseye Beach is a lovely beach to spend some time at but if you make your way to Hamilton Island you really should book yourself on a day trip to Whitehaven Beach.

Once ranked as the best beach in the world by Tripadvisor, this sensational beach can be conveniently reached with a short boat trip from Hammo.

You can choose to book a full-day or half-day boat tour to sunbathe or walk on its breathtaking white silica sands and enjoy a dip in its crystal-clear, sapphire waters.

If you have the time available and inclination, take a hike up to the Hill Inlet Lookout for an extended view of the sand.

20- See The Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef - Aerial View
Seeing the Great Barrier Reef is one of the things to do on Hamilton Island on a day trip.

With the Great Barrier Reef on your doorstep, no stay at Hamilton Island is complete without a visit to the Great Barrier Reef.

There are several different tours available, so you can visit to the largest coral reef system in the world in a way that is most appropriate to your budget and preferences.

For more things to do in Queensland, read:

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