Monday, 30 November 2015

Fun, friends, music at Airlie Beach and Rob revisits past lives.

November 2 – 9, 2015

We’d always planned we’d be turning back south around early November on our shakedown cruise along Australia’s Great Barrier Reef on Our Dreamtime to coincide with the northerly winds that spring up about that time but we had expected to be a lot further up the Queensland coast than Airlie Beach. Unfortunately our mechanical issues that saw us spend a month in Bundaberg and some heavy weather which delayed us at Great Keppel Island for a while put paid to that.
Regardless, Airlie Beach is a place with many special memories for us both and a fun place in its own right. For this voyage it was also to mark our turn around spot. After waving goodbye to our friends Anthony and Lynda who had joined us for a brief Whitsunday adventure, we had a relaxing couple of days at anchor in the bay off the Whitsunday Sailing Club. We had a great catchup with Sandra and Kel at Grotty Yachty who are located in Airlie Beach's main street. They have a great range of sailing themed clothing and will now be producing a range of Our Dreamtime merchandise for us available to all through the Join our Virtual Crew page of our blog.

On Wednesday we moved Our Dreamtime into Abell Point Marina and over the next day and a half gave her a good clean above and below decks and did all the usual things marinas are good for, fill with water, dump rubbish, pick up needed odds and ends from the chandlery etc, etc. On Thursday night we went up to the The Terraces resort which Rob had installed all the floor coverings in when it was built over 30 years ago. Having a G&Ts at the bar looking out over all the boats in the bay and watching the sunset was a real blast from a previous life.

The water quality in Abell Point Marina is excellent with soft corals thriving on the fingers and attracting plenty of good sized tropical fish. We even had nightly visits by a small pod of dolphins.

The following day Rob flew off to Sydney for a few days to revisit a more recent previous life. He'd been asked to do the commentary on the launch of Australia's new professional drag racing series, 400 Thunder, at Sydney Dragway and couldn't resist the opportunity to catch up with a lot of racing friends and earn a few dollars for the sailing kitty at the same time.

The reflection in the glass of the commentary box provided the ultimate selfie for a rev head as two 8,000 horsepower Top Fuel Dragsters blasted off on their way to 500 kph. (310 mph). Rob certainly had the best view point in the house.

 Despite some very threatening weather, the event went well with many tens of thousands of people watching the action around the world via a live streaming on the internet. It was also a great opportunity to spend some time with our son, Rod, who flew down from Brisbane to work on the crew for the winning Rapisarda Autosport International team for the weekend.

Our son Rod Oberg beside one of the 8,000 horsepower Top Fuel Dragsters he worked on over the weekend.

So what did Karen get up to while Rob was away in Sydney? Well, to start with, our great mate, Marc Beerts, arrived from London to join us for some Great Barrier Reef sailing on the trip back south to Brisbane. We first met Marc when the three of us stepped aboard the Bennetau 57 Nae Hassle in Cairns back in 2011 for our first cruising experience sailing as crew in the Sail Indonesia Rally. We then shared awesome adventures travelling together all the way to Thailand, the story of which is told in our book, Stuff it. Let's go sailing anyway!   We later reconnected in London before embarking on a joint venture which saw us sailing the Jeanneu 43DS Alcheringa together around the Mediterranean for two seasons. When we emailed Marc and asked if he'd like to spend a couple of months sailing with us again, this time in Australia on Our Dreamtime he had his airfares booked in no time.

Secondly, it just happened to be the weekend of the Airlie Beach Music Festival with over 70 bands playing at a range of venues in town. This had attracted friends Gary and Tanya up from Brisbane who actually flew in on the same plane as Marc and were staying in a resort next to the marina. So Karen, Marc, Gary and Tanya were kept more than busy enjoying three days and nights of music, eating, drinking, tall tale telling and much laughter the length and breadth of Airlie Beach.

Gary, Tanya, Karen and Marc at Coral Sea Resort next to the marina
Rockabilly band, Bad Luck Kitty, belting it out at Sorrento's Abell Point.
Marc, Karen and Rob in the wilds of Kalimantan in 2011.

Taking possession of Alcheringa in Mallorca, Spain in 2012.

Flying home from Sydney Rob's plane travelled much of the way just out of the coast and he had a great time viewing many of the island's we have visited on the way north from high in the sky.

Great Keppel Island at left and North Keppel to the right.

Next - Heading south!


Website -

Nightly rate for our yacht (14m inc davits) – $51 AUD  (This was the special rate for members of the SICYC -Shaggers, and included GST, water, power . Normal rate is $80)

The marina is located behind high breakwaters and would appear secure in all winds other than full blown gale from the North where surge could be an issue.  It is rated as cyclone safe. The berths are very wide and most easily accessible. Northern marina fingers  where we stayed are home to many tourist boats and bare boat fleets. They are not locked during the day and are open to the public to roam around.

There are two self serve fuel docks which you must make a booking to use. Each booking period is 30 minutes. The price of diesel was about 30c per litre higher than at a nearby service station. There is a very small but reasonably well stocked chandlery, a boat yard with haul out facilities, a number of retail outlets and restaurants. There is also a small liquor outlet with outrageous prices. Bathroom facilities are modern and of a high standard.  There is a coin operated laundry onsite with lots of machines available at about average cost. WIFI available at additional cost. All parking is paid and reasonably expensive.

The nearest supermarket is located near the marina at Cannonvale.  The marina provides a free courtesy car limited to 2 hours use once during your stay . A regular bus service stops in the car park.

The staff were very helpful and pleasant. We enjoyed our stay and would award five stars rather than four other than the cost of add ons such as parking, fuel etc.

Good night from Abell Point Marina

We love to receive comments on our blog from readers. If you do leave a comment and you also have a blog, please leave a link as well. We'd like to click over for a visit and leave you a comment too. 

To stay right up to date with what we’re up to  and see lots more photos check out and 'like' our Dreamtime SailFacebook page at Dreamtime Sail on Facebook


If you have only recently discovered our blog and would like to read how it all started, or work through our previous adventures, click the link to go back to our first blog entry. Stuff it. Let's just go sailing anyway.  We hope you enjoy reading the previous posts to catch up on our story.

No comments:

Post a Comment

We love to read your comments regarding our blog, what you enjoyed and what you might like to see more of. Please leave us your thoughts.