Airlie Beach is a town in the Whitsunday Region of Queensland, Australia. At the 2006 census, Airlie Beach had a population of 2,751.
Airlie Beach is known as the Heart of Australia's Great Barrier Reef (GBR) due to its position near the centre of the GBR that stretches for two thousand kilometres along the coast. Near latitude 20 degrees South, Airlie Beach and the nearby Whitsunday Islands enjoy a tropical climate and lifestyle.
The Whitsunday Islands, named by James Cook in 1770 are a sailors' paradise. Cook named the islands as he believed he passed through the area on the Christian festival day of Whit Sunday. It is now widely accepted that he didn't actually pass through on this date, as he had failed to take into account the yet to be brought into existence International Date Line a lá Phileas Fogg.