Free top things to do in Airlie Beach
Woohoo! You made it to Airlie Beach! This coastal town with so much life and known for being the main getaway to the Whitsundays Islands and The Great Barrier Reef, has much more to offer than what is known.
If you already visited the Whitsundays Islands and their beautiful beaches and you still have some days to go before your holiday end or you are planning to stay long term, take note of all the things you can do in Airlie Beach at no fee at all!
Sunbathe and swim at Airlie Beach’s lagoon
Located right in the centre of Airlie Beach town, the lagoon is the classic local meeting point. It has no cost and is perfect for a sunset session by the water. You can find clean and nice showers, toilettes, available BBQs and plenty of comfy chairs.
There is also a children’s pool so take your kids for a fun afternoon, or just go by yourself with a takeaway coffee and a good book to read under a tree. Parking must be paid though but totally worth it, Airlie Beach’s lagoon will never disappoint you.
Discover the town on an electric scooter
The best way to enjoy the 4 km Bicentennial Walk and its ocean views that go from Airlie Beach’s lagoon to Cannonvale Beach is definitely on an electric scooter. The ideal plan for a family day or quality time with friends.
Although it is not free, to hire an electric scooter in Airlie Beach costs only between $30 and $37 and you can use them for 2 hours. Whitsunday Fun and Le Shack, both located on the main street, Shute Harbour Rd, offer great prices and amazing products.
Oh yes, Markets!
Who doesn't love discovering tasty food, organic products and local arts and crafts on a sunny day? Every Saturday, if the weather allows it, the iconic Whitsunday Markets, located on 10-20 Airlie Esplanade, open from 7 am to 1 pm. You can find food, coffee, clothing, jewellery, plants, local produce, live music and so much more!
Also, if markets are your thing and you are keen to drive only 40 minutes, Bowen Sunday market is a must. Come across fresh and locally grown produce and handmade craft while you appreciate the beautiful beach view. Located on Hansen Park, Horseshoe Bay Road, from 8 am to 12 pm.
Walks and hikes
You can spend an amazing time on the mainland discovering Airlie Beache’s walks and hikes. Set up an early alarm, pack some water, snacks, hat and sunglasses and get ready for some fun adventure. Immerse yourself in the rainforest of the Conway National Park and get to the best high views of the Whitsunday area.
This walk starts at Kara Crescent in Airlie Beach and follows the Conway Circuit until the Honeyeater Lookout. It is an 8.2 km trail and although the walk to the lookout is very steep, it is 100% rewarding.
The Conway Circuit
Also known as The Great Whitsunday Walk, this 27 km journey through the Conway National Park is one of the most challenging and gratifying walks. It starts at Forestry Road and finishes in Airlie Beach and you should go well prepared and equipped because it takes 3 days to complete.
Mount Rooper Circuit and Swamp Bay Track
Also located in the Conway National Park, this 7 km will take you up to the Mount Rooper lookout and through Swamp Bay Track. When you arrive at the car park of the Conway National Park, find the sign which indicates the beginning of the track up to Mount Rooper. Looking for an exciting adventure? Why not going for sunrise?
Located about 50 km from Airlie Beach, Hideaway Bay is a small, sandy and white beach known for its amazing sunrises. There is no proper track but if you have the experience you can easily get from the beach to the lookout which gives a 180 -degree view of Dingo Beach and Cape Gloucester.
Participate in a sailing race!
Every Wednesday, the iconic twilight race takes place and everyone is invited! Around 20 sailing boats participate and many vessels need extra crew so you are more than welcome to join them! Go around 3 pm to Whitsunday Sailing Club, located in Airlie Point, to meet the crews and ask around.
This is a great opportunity for those willing to learn how to sail and if you have never sailed before, this will be an unforgettable experience.
Go for a swim in a natural waterfall (Cedar Creek Falls)
Between Airlie Beach and Prosperine, hides Cedar Creek falls. Take a dip in the freshwater of this natural rocky pool surrounded by robust vegetation and just float and relax.
There is also a beautiful walk to do so don´t forget to take a good pair of shoes. A good way of discovering this place would be driving until the Cedar Creek lookout, where you can park the car, and descend through the eucalypt forest until the falls.
Did someone say beach day?
We know you absolutely loved Whitehaven Beach and who doesn´t? It is breathtaking! But you should know there are amazing beaches with one million dollar views on the mainland too.
Surrounded by national parks and located only 40 minutes drive from Airlie Beach, find Dingo Beach, a sandy and tropical beach ideal for those who enjoy no crowds. During the season, you may be able to spot turtles, whales, dolphins and more wildlife. With BBQ facilities and a stinger - fee swimming enclosure, Dingo Beach is a good place to spend a whole beach day.
This small but stunning beach counts with a big stringer net that makes it the perfect spot for swimming. At only 5 minutes walking distance from the town, Boathaven Beach offers amazing views and white sand where you can sunbathe and relax in the ocean with your family and friends.
Live music night
Nothing better than finishing an amazing day full of outdoor activities under the sun with some live local music. While you walk through Shute Harbour Rd, the main street of Airlie Beach, full of restaurant and pubs, you will run into beautiful voices, pleasing guitars and more. So prepare your dancing moves and discover Airlie´s music life!