The Low Islands 16 22.81S 145 33.76E

Mike and Liz Downing
Sun 4 Aug 2013 21:20
On our way north again, but only a short passage of 38. 3 miles, from Cairns to the Low Islands about 9 miles offshore, northeast of Port Douglas. The original plan had been to do an overnighter direct from Cairns to Lizard Island, but having seen more whales on the catamaran trip out to the reef and there being virtually no moon at the moment (new moon is on Wednesday), we decided that day passages might be a better option, although it will take an extra day to get there. Having been in a marina for 10 days, getting the boat ready for sea again always takes us longer than we estimate, so we didn't get away until late morning and the Low Islands seemed just the right distance. And so it proved to be, as we arrived just before sunset having sailed the whole way, at around 6 to 7kts. We anchored just off the lighthouse and its beam lit up the boat on every revolution. It was a good anchorage and we had a good night's sleep, but in the evening we could hear the songs of whales through the hull. It's the first time we've heard them and they were clearly not that far away, so we felt we'd made the right choice.  Green hills of around 1000ft line the coast from Cairns to Port Douglas and beyond and sailing by day will also give more opportunity to see the scenery.