The perfect winter escape is right on our doorstep

IT'S hard to put into words the magic of Tangalooma Island Resort.

Just a 75-minute ferry trip from Brisbane's north, the tropical paradise feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of modern society.

ISLAND ESCAPE: It's the perfect winter getaway you never knew you needed, and it's right in your own backyard.
ISLAND ESCAPE: It's the perfect winter getaway you never knew you needed, and it's right in your own backyard. Contributed

On Moreton Island's shores is a resort that should be on everyone's radar, but is often forgotten as Queenslanders travel far and wide to escape the winter chill (well, what we consider winter anyway).

Tangalooma Island Resort is the perfect winter escape, and it's right in our own backyard.

Be welcomed by George the swallow, who refuses to leave the resort even after being nursed back to health.
Be welcomed by George the swallow, who refuses to leave the resort even after being nursed back to health. Ashley Carter

Stepping off the Tangalooma Jet, I was amazed at the clear waters, white sands and almost empty beach. I was also shocked that I'd grown up in southeast Queensland and had never set foot on the island before.

With beaches like these, you'd expect them to be packed with sunscreen-laden tourists and children soaking up the sun. But at Tangalooma you're more likely to have the widespread and sun-filled beach to yourself.

If warming up in the sun with a good book is your perfect idea of paradise, then Tangalooma is the place to escape this winter. But if you're more of an adventurer, there's more than enough to keep the whole family entertained.

Take to the hills on the desert safari and toboggan down giant sand dunes or try a quad bike out for size. And if you're keen enough to get in the water in winter, there's a myriad of ways to get out and enjoy the calm, clear waters of Moreton Bay.

Experience the perfect Moreton Island sunset on an illuminated kayak tour at the wrecks. It's an experience you won't forget.
Experience the perfect Moreton Island sunset on an illuminated kayak tour at the wrecks. It's an experience you won't forget. Ashley Carter

WHALE OF A CRUISE

Aside from feeding wild dolphins, the whale-watching cruise is the resort's biggest attraction during the colder months.

With eco ranger Josh taking you on a guided tour to Cape Moreton, you'll be entertained by dozens of large and small humpback whales as they make their way north in winter.

I counted 22 humpback whales on my three-hour cruise that either waved, rolled around or did a spectacular breach.

This year's whale season kicked off in June and is expected to be the biggest the island has ever seen, with 36,000 whales to stay and play around Moreton Island during the world's biggest annual migration.

That's a 10 per cent increase from 2018.

Step off the Tangalooma Jet and be welcomed by a flock of pelicans and sea birds after they've finished their daily feeding session.
Step off the Tangalooma Jet and be welcomed by a flock of pelicans and sea birds after they've finished their daily feeding session. Ashley Carter

If you're looking for a fun day out or wanting to add to the huge list of activities to do while staying at Moreton Island, you can't go wrong with a Tangalooma Island Resort whale-watching cruise.

When you step off the ferry, you'll see the magic of Tangalooma for yourself.

The writer was a guest of Tangalooma Island Resort. For more, visit www.tangalooma.com.au.



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