• Attractions
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  • Charter
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  • Cruises
  • Eating Out
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  • Sailing Schools
  • Sightseeing
  • Watersports

A Hinchinbrook Houseboats vessel allows you the freedom to explore, to choose what you want to do. You can experience the solitude and serenity of the myriad mangrove fringed waterways and sandy beaches of magnificent Hinchinbrook Island, the largest National Park island in the world. Alternatively, you can dive on the coral reef-fringing picturesque tropical islands. For the more sociably minded, a cruise to Dunk Island and join in the fun is essential.

When you thought you’d experienced all the world’s great cruising grounds, there’s still one place to delight and surprise you.

Cardwell, doorway to a secluded paradise.

The small coastal town of Cardwell is the focal centre for one of the most beautiful and least visited parts of the Australian coastline. It is situated alongside the National Highway 1 overlooking the waters of historic Rockingham Bay and has a population of approximately 1700 people. In distance it is almost halfway between the major North Queensland regional cities of Cairns and Townsville, so travellers tend to pass through Cardwell not realising that it is the best access to the fabulous islands and cruising grounds around Hinchinbrook Island National Park.

Vessel operation experience.

With Hinchinbrook Houseboats, you do not require any formal license to hire one of the houseboats, motor cruisers or sailing vessels. If you can drive a runabout or sail a dinghy, it is usually sufficient experience to skipper one of our vessels. We brief you thoroughly before departure; and navigation in the cruising area is very basic and mostly visual. Hinchinbrook Houseboats supplies charts and we have our own VHF private channel radio. Radio schedules are a 0830hrs and 1530hrs daily.

Need a guide?

If you are a bit nervous, or would like someone with local knowledge to get you started on your wilderness discovery, we can provide you with the services of an experienced local boating guide to assist in the operation of your vessel, showing you a selection of the best anchorage, fishing and snorkelling spots. You may keep your guide for as many days as you wish at the current daily rate plus food.

What to bring with you.

The essentials – swimsuit, sunglasses, lots of sunscreen, sand shoes or sandals, beach towel and wide brimmed hat. If you’re planning an evening out at one of the resorts, include a smart casual outfit. Don’t forget your camera and a few favourite cd’s, and pack everything into a soft bag rather than a suitcase. After that it’s just your favourite food & drinks, your fishing gear if you wish to wet a line and maybe a good book. Anything else you pack is up to you, but remember space onboard is limited .

Local Weather.

From May to October expect daytime temperatures of 22-28 degrees Celsius during the day and 13-19 degrees Celsius at night. From November to April the range is 26-31 during the day and 19-23 degrees Celsius at night. The water is an inviting 25-28 degrees Celsius all year around.