Friends of Australia tell us their holiday favourites

John Bertrand - Yachtsman & America's Cup Winning Skipper

There's Nothing Like a Coastal Break.

There's nothing like getting out on the water and experiencing some of Australia's beautiful coastline and hidden waterways on a sailboat. Here are John Bertrand's Top Sailing Spots.


4 Top Sailing Spots

1. Sydney Harbour, NSW

"For pure excitement, sailing on Sydney Harbour on a Saturday afternoon among a wall of sail boats is a must. Wow, one of the wonders of the world – where else can you sail around past some of the most iconic buildings on earth? You can cruise around, see the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge from all different angles and stop off for a swim or picnic at one of the many beautiful harbourside beaches."

2. Whitsunday Islands, QLD

"The Whitsundays are the best kept secret in the world for cruising. The scenery among the islands is just unbelievable, there is incredible wildlife and perfect safe anchorages for the evening cocktails and stern BBQ. Boat chartering is easy and well organised among many of the islands. On one of our family sailing holidays we witnessed a mother whale giving birth off the Whitsunday Islands. What a privilege to see this in the wild."

3. Hawkesbury River, NSW

"Cruising the Hawkesbury River, just north of Sydney is a dream. The landscapes in this area are quite idyllic and the scenery is magnificent. Different dramatic landscapes unfold at every turn in the river. You can begin the journey from Palm Beach, stop off for a picnic along the way, or at one of the restaurants accessible by boat."

4. Port Phillip Bay, VIC or Fremantle, WA

"Port Phillip Bay in southern Victoria or Fremantle in Western Australia are both world class destinations if you enjoy sailboat racing. The television pictures of the America's Cup Defence races in 1987 off Fremantle captured the imagination of the world. These locations offer sailboat racing at its best – sun, wind, deep blue ocean and the bluest of blue skies"

What is your favourite holiday experience in Australia?

"Hayman Island in the Whitsundays is amazing – on one condition. You rent a boat to explore the surrounding islands, there are so many stunning islands and landscapes to take in here. You can also charter a magnificent skippered yacht with a crew to do all the hard work, so you can just relax with a glass of champagne and enjoy snorkelling the surrounding reefs."

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