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Whitsunday Islands

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I was reading about these islands and their grouping. Jimmy Cook gave a general name to the group from St. Bees in the south, to Hayman in the north. As I checked The Whitsundays,  I saw that the Whitsundays did not include The Cumberland Islands (southern group)

Cumberland Islands (Queensland)

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For the Cumberland Island of Georgia, USA, see Cumberland Island.

The Cumberland Islands form a group of 70 islands at 20°34′S 149°08′E on the Great Barrier Reef, off the coast of Mackay in Queensland, Australia. They were discovered by Captain James Cook in 1770.[1]

In 1770 James Cook (then a lieutenant in the Royal Navy) in His Majesty’s Bark the Endeavour sailed past the coast off Mackay. After travelling north for a further two days, in his journal for Monday 4 June he recorded that he named the body of water through which he sailed Whitsunday’s Passage "… as it was discovered on the day the Church commemorates that Festival" and called the islands in the area "Cumberland Isles in honour of His Royal Highness the Duke of Cumberland" (Henry Frederick, the brother of His Majesty King George III of England).

In giving the name, Cook gave no firm indication which islands in the area were encompassed, but his chart showed the name covering islands as far south as St Bees Island and Keswick Island, and Hayman to the north. More detailed charts by those following Cook showed likewise. Over time "Isles" has been replaced by "Islands". More recently these islands have increasingly become known as the Whitsunday Islands, and the general area more simply as the "Whitsundays".

The Cumberland Islands were grouped into the Whitsunday Group, the Lindeman Group, the Anchor Islands, the Sir James Smith Group and the South Cumberland Islands National Park.

At school, in a geography lesson, I was taught that there were 144 islands in the Whitsundays, but I find that the Whitsundays only comprise 74 islands...

So...These islands are the Cumberland Islands...


Locally, they are known as The Smith Group, from Goldsmith to Ladysmith and the Forge and Bellows Islands on the left of the photo and The Brampton Group in the centre....

Confused? Me too!

As far as most people are concerned, they are all in The Whitsundays...And therefore, comprise the 144 islands, not just 74.

Cheers, Bobj.



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Sarina Beach, central coastal Qld.



Cheers, Bobj.



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