Lady Elliot Island

Lady Elliot Island - Heaven on our Doorstep
We’ve seen the brochures in our office and heard our guests saying how wonderful lady Elliot Island is so we decided to take a look for ourselves.
 
What we found was nothing short of spectacular and the pictures just don’t tell the whole story.  When you arrive on the island in the light aircraft just 30 minutes from the Hervey Bay airport, you are transported to another world, think Gilligans Island, only better.
 
The staff were very welcoming and the systems and the orientation was well thought out.  After completing our orientation we headed to the dive shop and had a quick snorkelling lesson in the pool and then hopped on the courtesy bus and travelled across the island for our glass bottom boat tour.
 
The water was crystal clear and as soon as we dived in we could see thousands of little blue fish
 
Glass bottom boat tour
Crystal clear water diving
Amazing reef
Then a big green sea turtle swim up right beside us it was an emotional moment being immersed in natures wonderland and all its glory.  Check out the short YouTube video here of the schools of blue fish.
 
When we got back to the resort our bags had already been taken to our room and we changed and came over to the restaurant for a buffet lunch.  There is an activities board and an education centre and there are lots of different things to do if you want to or you can just chill out and relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.
 
We decided that we’d like to have a Nanna nap so we could then experience the sunset later which didn’t disappoint after we had our early buffet dinner.   When we went back to the restaurant to finish up with some lovely desert we were told that some hatchlings were going to be released back to the ocean that had been rescued from their nests.  We were in for a treat as we watched green turtles and loggerhead turtles heading for the water.  It was another awe inspiring moment where you realise the importance of saving our planet.
 
My girlfriend had warned me about the smell from all the birds as the island has thousands of birds.  Admittedly there were areas that the ammonia smell was worse than others, however we took our diffuser and our Midge Magic essential oil.
It turned out that we didn’t really need to use it, but it was a handy thing to have just in case.
Resort grounds
Activities board
Thousands of birds
Lighthouse at sunset
We were planning on getting up early and walking around the island but slept in and instead enjoyed a another lovely buffet breakfast after seeing a turtle building a nest right outside our cabin and laying her eggs, another magic moment.
 
We really wanted to stay for another night as it was so relaxing and peaceful and getting away from the Internet and the Digital world was very calming on the soul.  However this was not to be,  so reluctantly we packed up our bags and put them into the storage room while we set off for another snorkelling adventure on our own.
 
We swam out to the reef and there were some buoys out in the deep channel.  After some trepidation we headed out off-shore and it was comforting that the skipper of the glass bottom boat wasn’t too far away so if necessary you could have waved to them and they would come and help.
 
What an amazing area to snorkel in.   I’ve been snorkelling in Hawaii and Fiji and I’ve never seen such variety of fish and coral.
The sounds of the coral popping or crackling was mesmerising and then a black reef tip shark swam right below us.
For some reason I didn’t even feel scared as he was not even looking at us, just cruising along on his merry way on the ocean floor –  a beautiful sight and lifetime experience I’ll never forget.  There were these amazing colourful parrot fish and we swam through a big school of fish something that again I’ve never done before.
 
We swam back to the Rope and that was such a help to be able to pull myself along that because otherwise I would not have been able to swim back against the current as the tide was running out. 
Glass bottom boat
Heaven on our Doorstep
Calamari cooked to perfection
Coming back into the shore I swam over a huge clam and he had spots on the inside and he was opening his mouth.  It was a really heart pumping moment swimming right over him as I was worried he was going to squirt something out at me.  Funny feeling being afraid of a clam and not a shark.  Go figure.  
 
Then we enjoyed a beautiful lunch.  The calamari was cooked to perfection and home-made dressing with golden chips cooked just right –  for the $20 the price for the food and drinks were very reasonable.
 
Then we relaxed in the air-conditioned lounge area until sadly it was time for us to go home.
 
When we hopped on the plane we were told we were going home via Bundaberg.  At first I thought this was going to take a long time but it turned out to be a great trip seeing all the townships on the way down the coast was just another added bonus to this amazing experience.  The only regret we had is that we couldn’t have stayed longer.
 
Lady Elliot Island didn’t disappoint, it truly is heaven on Earth right on our doorstep.
 
Footnote – upon returning home and opening social media I was bombarded with adverts from Hawaii selling diving holidays! Why would you want to go anywhere else when you have that pristine diving location just 30 minutes from home. #holidayherethisyear  
 
Mango Lodge Lord relaxing after lunch
Enjoying a coffee at the restaurant
Spectacular coastal views on our trip home
Rosie the camp manager