Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Whitsundays Travel Blog

Best Time to Sail in the Whitsundays


Right now! That’s right – the best time to sail in the Whitsundays is anytime. The Whitsunday Islands are located off the north-east Queensland coast in Australia – the same latitude as Honolulu in the northern hemisphere and Mauritius in the Southern Hemisphere. There’s a year-round, warm, sub-tropical climate. This means, all year long, the climate makes for perfect beach holidays. With average daily temperatures of 27°C and around 300 sun-drenched days in a year, it’s no wonder they make such a popular holiday destination!

There are a few considerations you could take into account. These factors can help decide the best time for you:


During the summer months of December, January and February, temperatures can reach 31°C and the most rainfall is recorded. Though, for the most part, the rain usually comes in the form of a brief, light shower. During the winter months of June, July and August, the highest temperatures are around 22°C, dropping down to around 18°C at night. So, while it’s still a warm winter, you may need a jacket or jumper. It should be said that the islands themselves are well protected and have a micro-climate of their own. The shelter of the islands also provides calm waters year-round, and there’s generally a steady breeze.


Different seasons bring changes to the wildlife and marine life in the area. Between July to October migratory humpback whales visit the region. They swim north from the Antarctic waters to give birth to their calves. This gives them a greater chance of surviving their first few weeks. The whales often put on a great show for the unsuspecting passengers, as they breach and wave their fins in front of you.

There is also ‘stinger season’ to consider – jellyfish are more common in the months of October to May. We use stinger suits all year round as jellyfish can be present at all times, so it is just good practice. Don’t let this deter you from jumping in however, with safety precautions followed, it is safe for everyone to swim!

Popular Travel Times

Another consideration to make is popular travel times with others – especially if you want to enjoy the natural beauty without crowds! In the Whitsundays there is a high and low season and school holidays to consider. The school holidays change slightly every year, but there are generally four: two-week holidays in April, July and September and one 5-week holiday over December – January. During these times you will find a lot more families around. High Season is generally during the summer months, between November to April, with numbers dropping off from May to August. High season brings in many young international travellers from around the world, as part of their travels up Australia’s east coast and beyond. This can mean that spaces on vessels will fill up further in advance, so best to book early and avoid disappointment.

According to weather experts, September is the best month for visiting the Whitsundays. This may be to do with the months average temperature of 25°C, the highest number of clear, sunny days, and least amount of rainfall!  Ultimately, it will all come down to your own travel plans and home commitments. And, regardless of the weather wildlife and busyness, we think you’ll find the Whitsundays amazing whenever you visit!