We recently stayed at AIrlie Beach and were really disappointed by the Airlie Beach town. Lucky we stayed at the gorgeous Peppers Resort which made up for the lack of ANYTHING in the main town of AIrlie Beach. The council is trying to clean the town up and the main strip is currently flooded with road works with really poor traffic management. There are only a couple of decent shops and the rest is all rubbish! There are no local fashion labels, jewellery stores, crafty stores. There are too many pubs full of drunk backpackers and there is absolutely nothing to entertain the kids- no cinemas, no bowling, no amusement stores, no toy stores- nothing!!!! Oh and don't try and look for a decent coffee house because you will not find one. The only restaurant that was superb was Mr Bones- which is directly in front of the lagoon. The pizza is really amazing. TIdes restaurant at Peppers was also superb and well worth the trip up the hill if you are not staying at the resort. The main town doesn't even have a decent chain supermarket (coles, woollies, IGA) and you need to rely on these seven-eleven type supermarkets that are crap! Luckily we found a neighbouring online coles store which delivered directly to Peppers Resort. The town is also flooded with dozens of whitesunday travel agents which are all offering the same thing. The town is flooded with backpackers who are sleeping in tents on the beach and in the public car parks surrounding the Main Street. There are a lot of for lease signs and you get a sense that business is tough!!! There is a new airlie beach marina but there are no ferries departing from this berth. You need to travel to either Abel harbour or Shute harbour to catch any connecting ferries to whitesunday paradise! The walk from the lagoon which is a fantastic man made free public pool towards Abel harbour is well worth the walk as you have an amazing panoramic view of the town and its surrounding national park. If you are a family thinking of going to the whitesundays I would not recommend you stay at AIrlie Beach. Spend a little more and stay at hamilton island and this is cream of all islands. Don't bother going to daydream island as this island is in need of a real revamp. The resort is old and dirty and the food is horrendously bad. The service is even worse.