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Haggerstone Island

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Getting to Haggerstone Island is an adventure in itself. You can either travel to the remote island by seaplane and skid to stop on its shores, or you can charter a plane and land on a neighbouring island's airstrip, then take a 15-minute boat ride to Haggerstone.

This beautiful hideaway, sitting in the Coral Sea, is a dream come true for Roy and Anna Turner. When they purchased it in 1985, it was in its natural state and they spent six years tearing through the jungle to create their timber pole house. In 1990, they designed and hand-crafted more huts, bringing in the building materials by small boats and barges. In 1994, the three huts were ready to welcome guests. Each can sleep up to four and a maximum of eight guests are catered for at any one time. The feeling of living on a deserted island remains intact.

The huts have conical roofs, the walls are shutters, the huge beds have crisp cotton sheets and each has a slate-floored bathroom with shower and toilet, small kitchen, refrigerator and sink. There are sundecks just right for sitting and soaking in views of the turquoise lagoon, the Coral Sea and uninhabited islands.

The surrounding waters are chock-full of the most wonderful array of fish. Originally the majority of their visitors were fishing enthusiasts. Now people from all sorts of backgrounds are discovering what Haggerstone has to offer. The food, with its freshness and simplicity, is certainly an enormous enticement.

Apart from taking advantage of the bounty of seafood at their front door, the Turners grow wonderful fruit, vegetables and herbs and put them to delicious use.

The main building is spacious with open sides to take advantage of the cooling breezes. It has a main kitchen, two bathrooms, a dining area and extensive library. There is a deck with an open fire, and that is where the evening meal is prepared most of the time.

The island is a great place for bird watching. It is home to sunbirds, pigeons, honeyeaters, eagles, kingfishers, finches, jungle fowl and doves. You can snorkel, scuba or fish, inspect the shipwrecks, swim around the pristine coral gardens or comb the beach for WWII artefacts.

The Turners have a seven-metre twin engine catamaran, and a seven-metre and a six-metre fibreglass long boat available for fishing, diving and exploration. Within a 60km radius there are thousands of reefs making up the largest protected marine park in the world.

Location

600 kms north of Cairns.

Cost


Haggerstone Island accommodation is $750 a night per person twin share, based on a minimum seven-night stay. Meals are included. The whole island can be hired for $3900 a day.

Virgin Blue has flights to Cairns with limited seats which may not be available at peak times or on all flights. Fares are one-way on the net. An extra $15 will be charged for phone bookings. A credit card surcharge of an additional $2 per person per one way flight is applicable. Fares are correct at May 25, 2006 and are subject to change.

Charter flights from Cairns start at $820 per person return.

One way fare from;

  • Brisbane, $125
  • Melbourne and Sydney, $159
  • Adelaide, $199
  • Darwin, $265
  • Perth, $315

For further information



Haggerstone Island
Ph: 0145 111 883
Fax: 0145 211 883
Website: www.haggerstoneisland.com
E-mail: rose_greco@hotmail.com

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