Top Beaches Along Airlie Beach To Bowen Mainland

If you’ve wrapped up your Whitsunday Islands tour and are craving more sandy shores, you’re in luck! Dive into this guide to uncover the top beaches between Airlie Beach and Bowen for an unforgettable coastal experience.


Airlie Beach

Boathaven Beach: Just a 5-minute walk from the town center, Boathaven Beach features a large stinger net, making it ideal for safe swimming. Enjoy breathtaking views and soft sand perfect for sunbathing and relaxation. During the hot summer months, consider bringing an umbrella as shade options are limited. For pet owners, the beach offers off-leash hours from 5:30 am to 8:30 am daily.


Cannonvale Beach: Located at the end of the Bicentennial Walkway, Cannonvale Beach offers natural beauty and family-friendly amenities. This small sandy stretch boasts rock pools at one end and mangroves at the other, making it a diverse spot for exploration. A centrally located stinger net ensures safe swimming during stinger season. Families will appreciate the playground near the shore, as well as the scattered BBQs and exercise machines along the beachfront. During low tide, visitors can venture to nearby Pigeon Island for an added adventure. Be sure to check tide schedules to avoid being stranded and wear sturdy shoes, as the rocks can be sharp! For pet owners, the eastern end of the beach allows off-leash access during certain hours, except on peak times and school days.


Shute Harbour

Coral Beach: A short 15-minute drive from Airlie Beach leads to a hidden gem known as Coral Beach. Accessible via a scenic walking track through lush rainforest, stretching approximately 1 km, this secluded beach is composed of washed-up coral fragments. Due to its secluded location, you’ll often find yourself with this beach to yourself. The track to Coral Beach takes you for a wander through dense rainforest where you might spot native wildlife and enjoy stunning views along the way. The beach itself is a tranquil haven where you can relax, explore the shoreline, and admire the unique coral formations washed ashore. It's an ideal spot for nature enthusiasts, photographers, and anyone seeking a quiet spot away from the touristy areas. Remember to bring essentials like water, sunscreen, and sturdy footwear for the walk, and consider packing a picnic to fully enjoy a day at Coral Beach.


Hideaway Bay and Dingo Beach

Dingo Beach: Dingo Beach is a small township located approximately a 45-minute drive from Airlie Beach. The beach boasts a long stretch of soft white sand and calm turquoise waters, ideal for swimming, snorkeling, and fishing. BBQ facilities are available, offering visitors the opportunity to enjoy a picnic with stunning ocean views. Additionally, there is a year-round stinger net in place for safe swimming during stinger season. After a day at the beach, the local Dingo Beach Pub, situated right on the beachfront, is a perfect spot for a pub meal and a cold beer. It's an ideal place to relax and enjoy lunch or an afternoon drink while overlooking the bay. For those looking to explore the waters around Dingo Beach, The Great Dingo Beach Escape offers boat hire options for both novice boaters and those with a boat license.

Hideaway Bay Beach: Just a short 10-minute drive from Dingo Beach lies Hideaway Bay. This small township is located on a no-through road, which is a mixture of gravel and tarmac. Along this road, you'll find multiple access points to secluded beaches, often all to yourself. Hideaway Bay Beach itself offers pristine white sands and clear turquoise waters, perfect for swimming, snorkeling, fishing, and relaxing with a picnic. If you prefer not to pack your own food, you can visit the nearby Cape Gloucester Resort for lunch or dinner while enjoying the beautiful surroundings. If you have the time, stick around to watch the sun drop down behind the ocean. It’s a sight not to be missed!



Horseshoe Bay: Located an hour's drive from Airlie Beach, Bowen boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the Whitsundays region. Horseshoe Bay is a highlight, featuring a pristine sandy beach bordered by large granite rocks, which not only add to the scenic beauty but also create a sheltered environment perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and sunbathing. One of the main draws of visiting Bowen for a beach day is the thriving fringing reef located just off the mainland. This healthy reef provides ample opportunities for snorkelers and divers to explore vibrant marine life and colorful coral formations. After enjoying Horseshoe Bay, take a stroll along the foreshore walking path that connects Horseshoe Bay with other nearby beaches and lookout points.

Murray Bay: A lesser-known beach in Bowen, Murray Bay, is just a short drive from Horseshoe Bay. If you're looking for something more secluded, this is the place to be. Offering similar attractions to Horseshoe Bay without the crowds, Murray Bay is the perfect spot to unwind. Just like Horseshoe Bay, Murray Bay features a small sandy beach with a thriving fringing reef just off the mainland. This secluded bay is ideal for those seeking tranquility and a more intimate connection with nature. The clear waters and vibrant marine life make it a great spot for snorkeling and swimming. Explore the rock pools, take in the serene surroundings, and enjoy a peaceful day at one of Bowen's hidden gems, don’t forget to pack some snacks and water as there are no shops at the beach.

Wings Sailing Private Charters

Looking for a Whitsundays private skippered charter instead?

Find out more at