As the title suggests, this was an amazing experience. I did have a look at a lot of the reviews and I was a bit reluctant at first, but glad I bit the bullet and just booked it. There are a lot of tour companies in the Whitsundays, particularly on and around Airlie beach. A lot of them take you to Whitehaven beach and Hill Inlet because they are the biggest tour attractions in the Whitsundays, and don't get me wrong, they were cool. But this one is a little different as this is run by a sailing and diving enthusiast couple using their own boat. It is a far more intimate experience than a lot of the other hot-dog factory tours and Naomi and Jo have between them clocked thousands and thousands of dives and know all the great snorkelling and dive spots. When I went diving with Naomi, she was just as excited as me to see Nemo (three times) as well as a sting ray and a bunch of other cool stuff. There was a little fishy named Wally (yes I named it) that followed us for one of our dives.
Naomi might not be everyone's cup of tea (as these reviews suggest) as she can be quite blunt when it comes to safety and tidiness but this is to ensure the safety of her guests and safety of herself and the skipper. Just FYI, my wife was pregnant when we went on this tour and Naomi was more than accommodating; she even reassured my wife that provided she wore a wetsuit she would remain safe from the stingers.
Naomi was also quite pedantic about their catamaran remaining clean (and this may annoy some people). But this isn't just a little tinny with an engine, it is a pretty epic boat (yes I called it a boat to annoy Joe) and you'll see why they want to keep it so tidy. Lounging on the nets as you cruise the Whisundays is so relaxing and it makes it easier to enjoy your ride to some of the most awesome dive and snorkelling sites.
Yes, there is a chance that if you book it may get cancelled so ensure you have a backup and leave a few days either side of your booking to ensure you go out at least once. Because its a private boat and the ocean is unpredictable, they can't always go out. But when they do, it is super awesome.
If you want to go see Whitehaven beach and Hill Inlet and hear the tour guides like everyone else, book another tour company (they are cool to see) but if you want to see amazing marine life either via a snorkel or diving suit, then get on the Illusions 2. We didn't even have amazing weather (it was rainy for a lot of it) but the visibility under the water was still pretty decent.
Thanks Naomi and Joe for an amazing adventure.
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