North Stradbroke Island – or ‘Straddie’ as it’s affectionately known to the locals – is home to unspoilt beaches, dolphins, land-based whale watching, dugong, turtles and manta rays and is less than an hour from the Brisbane CBD. Visitors come from far and wide to experience its stunning natural beauty and laid back charm yet many south-east Queenslanders still haven’t been to this magical place.
Now is the perfect time to discover (or perhaps rediscover) the pleasures of a Stradbroke Island holiday. The weather is mild and usually glorious and there’s less of a crowd. Not only that, accommodation is generally cheaper and the passing whales aren’t shy when it comes to putting on a show.
Ask any Brisbane local about Straddie and they will launch into tales of school holidays spent in fibro holiday shacks overlooking the beach, exploring the island’s many natural charms. The relaxed holiday vibe hasn’t changed much since the ’70s but that’s part of the island’s appeal. Nowadays there’s better accommodation on offer, not to mention plenty of fun things to do.
To coincide with the upcoming school holidays, the island will be showcasing the best of what’s on offer in the inaugural Taste of Straddie celebration from June 23-30. This family friendly holiday program includes activities like cocktails with the whales, outdoor cinema, camel rides along the beach, barefoot bowls, beach cricket and guided historical tours. It all kicks off on Saturday (23 June) with a free barbeque at Point Lookout hosted by 97.3FM, which will broadcast live from what must surely be one of the world’s most beautiful ‘outdoor radio studios’.
If you can’t make it over this weekend, some more Straddie events to mark down in your 2012 calendar include the Stradbroke Chamber of Music Festival, Straddie Salute Multisport Festival, Straddie Assault Invitational Surfing Competition and the Island Vibe celebration of world music, performing arts and Island culture.
There’s no shortage of things to do on Straddie these days but the island’s unspoilt charm also serves as a reminder that holidays were once an opportunity to unwind and enjoy a destination; to revel in its sense of place; to celebrate with local people and take home memories more precious and long lasting than any video recording. Straddie is somewhere you can reconnect with your family and yourself. It’s a place where you can experience incredible natural wonders, friendly local hospitality, pristine beaches and spectacular ocean views. And it’s right on our doorstep.
A Taste of Straddie > 23 to 30 Jun
Join the 97.3 team for a free BBQ 23 Jun + a week full of festivities
2012 Stradbroke Chamber Music Festival > 27 to 29 Jul 12
Six chamber concerts on beautiful Stradbroke Island
Straddie Salute Multisport Festival > 15 to 16 Sep
Run, Swim or Ride in the Straddie Salute
Straddie Assault Surf Comp > 20 to 21 Oct
Spectators delight invitational surf comp
Straddie Island Vibe Festival > 26 to 28 Oct
Get into the island vibe – music, dance & art