I’ll just ignore the smooching honeymooners…

Having never experienced the birds egg blue sea of the Whitsundays before, Paul and I were probably spoilt rotten with our glamorous introduction. It’s simple to get around this group of Australian islands with the Cruise Whitsundays ferry, but the luxurious yet intimately homely Paradise Bay Eco Escape on Long Island isn’t easily reached. It isn’t even overly advertised. Its success depends on word of mouth and a daily helicopter transfer system that flies in ogle-eyed guests such as ourselves, over the emerald forests and sparkling waters, and renders them never wanting to leave.

As our helicopter touched down on a tiny strip close to a line of secluded villas, we watched our hosts, the impossibly gorgeous Todd and Sophie come to meet us. With smiles they took our bags and it wasn’t three minutes before we were all sitting on a stripy sofa under a canopy, sipping champagne, waving as our pilot took to the skies once more.

Paradise Bay is about as deserted as you’re likely to get in the Whitsundays. Prepare to leave your mobile phones and laptops behind; even if you need them, you’ll get no reception or WIFI here. Plus, the whole resort is run by solar power, for a totally eco-friendly holiday. Ladies, forget the hair straighteners!
Don’t worry about being cut off completely; there’s tons of lovely stuff to fill your day.

Paul and I never got to experience Chris the infamous skipper’s charms, as we were there on the one day his little boat wasn’t offering guests daily fishing, snorkelling or sightseeing trips. The guests all raved about their fish spotting, though. Some even saw whales, and couples rekindling their romance in utter bliss clasped hands and gushed about mangrove adventures, helicopter rides and finding Nemo on the outer reef. It was enough for Paul and I however, to lounge on the comfy chairs, chat to new friends, reacquaint ourselves with the games Boggle and Balderdash and snap a thousand pictures of the candlelit “main house” as the tide breathed gently in and out.

Paradise Bay Eco Resort operates on an all-inclusive basis, so there’s no need to worry about carrying cash. In fact, with an emphasis on communal dining by candlelight at night, or on the terrace in the sun for breakfast and lunch, you’ll probably come away feeling like you just spent time at a close friend’s house, perhaps an extended dinner party, albeit in island bliss.

Our chef, Todd, cooked up the most amazing meals I think I’ve ever eaten at a “resort”, while his partner and amazing hostess Sophie served cocktails and wine to die for. Home cooked highlights were a seafood bisque, a Tasmanian steak, the egg hollandaise breakfast… too many to mention! The honeymooners had smiles on their faces the whole time and it definitely wasn’t just because of the night time activity (ahem). They knew they’d picked the best place in the Whitsundays to spoil themselves rotten. It’s just you, your brand new wife or husband and up to eight other couples at any one time, here on the corner of this island.

The resident wallaby, Edwina, knew quality food when she was given it too. During our brief visit we saw her no less than four times as she hopped up for a banana or rice cracker, happily posing for photos. You’ll find all manner of wildlife wandering about, actually, as Paradise Bay is a place where nature and nurturing every human desire comes naturally. Birds squawk, butterflies flutter and if you’re lucky/unlucky, you might get a pre-dawn chorus by the vocal crows and cockatoos. We did, at 4am. Lovely.

Still, sleeping in is no problem when you having nothing much to do with your waking hours, except soak up the scenery. I’ll definitely be leaving my hairdryer, mobile phone and laptop behind again for a return visit to Paradise Bay Eco Resort. And I’ll be taking this motto with me: If no one knows where I am, they can’t interrupt me. If my mobile phone satellites don’t know where I am, they definitely can’t interrupt me.

Taken from our travel blog here at The Travel Editor. Tune in!!!

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