Back when I was road tripping around Australia, I took the short ferry ride over to the beautiful Magnetic Island from Townsville off theFar North Coast of Queensland, Australia. When looking for accommodation, I found the Peppers Blue on Blue was the perfect hotel that would suit my needs for the duration of my stay. It was within walking distance to the ferry terminal, close to a fun car rental office and was located in the marina, a beautiful and quiet area of the island away from the main parties and backpackers.
Location & How To Get There
Magnetic Island lies just a few kilometres off the coast of Townsville in Queensland, Australia. There are multiple daily flights into Townsville from Brisbane, Cairns, Sydney and Melbourne. Once in Townsville, you can take the ferry straight across to Magnetic Island which only takes about 25 minutes and departs every 45 to 90 minutes.
Once on Magnetic Island, the Peppers Blue on Blue is literally right there. It’s not even a one minute walk from the pier, you can’t miss it.
The Peppers Blue on Blue Resort Review
The hotel itself is laid out in a nice resort style with different houses set along the harbour front and the large resort pool. There are actually two pools, a smaller one near reception, and then a very large lagoon-style pool in the middle of the resort. Both of them let you enjoy nice views of the harbour and the large pool makes for a great swim. There are lots of lounge chairs to choose from, and also a few barbecue stations set besides the lagoon pool.
Each house features a few very modern and light-filled apartments across three floors. I especially loved the large balconies and great views, since the weather in this part of Australia is just perfect to spend your time outside. Very warm all day and all night, but not too hot or humid.
The apartments themselves are very spacious. Ours had a large combined living room with an open kitchen and the balcony out towards the front. On the back side, there was a really nice ensuite master bedroom and another two smaller bedrooms sharing a bathroom. The master bedroom had a free-standing bathtub and even an own additional balcony (as did one of the smaller bedrooms).
Since the apartments are mostly owned by individual people, they work on a timeshare basis. That also means, that each apartment has got an individual touch towards it. All three apartments we saw had a great modern interior though.
My rate included a daily breakfast buffet, which was a good way to start the day! It’s served in the hotels restaurant, the Boardwalk Restaurant & Bar. I loved the setting of this restaurant, especially the large outside terrace. That’s why I came back for some afternoon or sunset drinks a few times.
Not exactly cheap, but the views over Magnetic Island Marina and the ocean are more than worth it – even more so in the evening! They serve optional à la carte lunch and dinner here as well, and the food we’ve tried was always tasty.
Alternatively, you can stock up at IGA across the road and then cook for yourself in your apartment or on the barbecues by the lagoon pool. If you don’t feel like eating in the hotel, there are a lot of options all around Magnetic Island.
What To Do On Magnetic Island
Magnetic Island has only got four major settlements. First of all, there is Nelly Bay, the main community by the ferry pier. If you go south from here, you’ll eventually reach Picnic Bay after a five minute drive.
Going north from Nelly Bay, Arcadia is just around the corner, stretching across Geoffrey Bay and Alma Bay. The road ends up in Horseshoe Bay after another five to ten minutes, and that’s pretty much it in terms of paved roads.
Since there is such a tiny road network and driving speeds are generally slow, it is very popular to hire a Topless Car. They cost insignificantly more than a normal car but are a lot more fun and usually include fuel! The main store for these is only a two minute walk from Peppers Blue on Blue, and you can park the car for free in the hotels garage.
Once you’ve hired one of these, it’s super easy to explore the island. Alternatively, there also is a regular bus service along the main road. One of the main things to do during the day is hiking up to The Forts. It’s 1.5 to 2 hours round-trip and involves a bit of up- and downhill, so be sure to carry some water. The views from the old forts on top of the hill are magnificent!
I even saw a few koalas on the way up, but they didn’t seem to like having their photos taken 🙂
Afterwards, you can head to Horseshoe Bay for a swim and a refreshing drink at Marlin Bar.
In Arcadia, you can find lots of cute Rock Wallabies at Bremner Point. You’ll have the best chance to spot these rather shy animals, if you don’t come during the hottest time of the day. In fact, they’re most active just after sunset. If you do want to feed them, please make sure to get them the correct food from the nearby store.
Of course there are many other things to do as well. If you love hiking for example, or you’ve got a 4×4 car with you, then there are a lot more bays and beaches all around Magnetic Island that you can explore. You’l usually have the more secluded ones entirely to yourself!
Have you been or want to stay on Magnetic Island or Peppers Blue on Blue? What did you like about?
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