Where else can you live that boasts an annual average of 320 days sunshine, warm tropical waters and is the gateway to spectacular Magnetic Island, the Palm Island group and Great Barrier Reef? Townsville North Queensland, home to Townsville’s Breakwater Marina.
In July 2016 we ditched the suburbs for a life on the water and moved onto our newly purchased, 42 foot motorboat Too Easy with three kids and one dog in tow, making Breakwater Marina our new home. Downsizing from a four bedroom, two bathroom house to a boat was a challenge, but we had a light bulb moment. We had too much stuff. We did not need more space, just less stuff!
Taking on a minimalist approach we listed our excess household items on Gumtree, had a couple of garage sales, donated items and then took the leftovers to the tip. Being first timers, once we were onboard we still had to cull more stuff. Living without excess stuff is a refreshing way to live.
Breakwater Marina is conveniently located at the eastern end of Townsville’s premier waterfront promenade, The Strand. Where else can you live in the best part of town for a fraction of the cost of purchasing or renting a house?
The staff at Breakwater Marina pride themselves on friendly, personal service and premium quality facilities. The on-site marina office is open seven days: 8am to 5pm, so there is always a staff member available to assist and grab lines when berthing.
All berths are fully serviced with single-phase electrical connections, up to 15 amps and fresh potable water, all included in the berth fee. Three-phase power is available on selected larger berths. Marina car parking is available to marina tenants who have a current mooring agreement.
The clean and modern amenities block features 24 hour coin operated washing machine and dryers, social room, communal barbecue area complete with herb garden. Marina residents and visitors look forward to monthly themed social evenings organised by marina staff; these are always a great night of fun and comradery.
For customer convenience there is a 24 hour fuel wharf, waste compound, free wifi hotspot, ice, gas refill service and, recently introduced, courtesy car and bicycles that can be booked out if you require a quick dash to the supermarket or to pick up other provisions.
Marina security is taken seriously with 24 hour security and closed circuit television, after-hour patrols and key card access allowing authorised persons only to access piers, giving real peace of mind to boat owners and tenants. The marina precinct has also adopted a Neighbourhood Watch group who meet regularly. They were the first on-water Neighbourhood Watch group in Queensland.
With easy access to the city, supermarket, parks, public transport and regular markets Breakwater Marina is the perfect stop for short or long-term visitors. Marina tenants are lucky with everything they need available at their back door.
During your stay immerse yourself in tropical Townsville; discover the 2.2 kilometre waterfront Strand promenade. With a relaxed and lively vibe, The Strand has something for everyone including many parks to relax, play or splash around and spectacular views over to Magnetic Island.
Enjoy an ocean swim in one of two patrolled, palm-lined beaches along the promenade. Stinger nets are erected during stinger season November to April. Or swim at the purpose-built Rock Pool at the western end beside the award winning Jezzine Barracks.
Adjacent to the marina is the heritage listed Anzac Memorial Park which features mature Banyan trees, historic memorials and the Centenary Fountain that illuminates in a rainbow of colour at night.
Magnetic Island or Maggie as it is affectionately known to locals, is only four nautical miles from Breakwater Marina. With 23 pristine bays and sandy beaches, many only accessible by boat, you are spoilt for choice. Horseshoe Bay located on the northern side of the island is best anchorage for the prevailing wind and a convenient place to stock up on extra provisions if you are staying for an extended period.
Cape Cleveland, located 11.5nm from the marina, is another magical place to explore. Cape Cleveland lighthouse was built in 1879 along with two purpose-built houses for the lighthouse keepers and families. Isolated from civilisation the cape, was and still is, only accessible by boat and, nowadays, helicopter.
From the sandy beach a steep, meandering driveway takes off and leads up to the lighthouse. A saddle point in the driveway is a wonderful place to stop and take in the views of the rugged, rocky east side of the cape. Continuing up the driveway the views over to Magnetic Island and back to Townsville are spectacular.
There is a serious side to living in the tropical north, the threat of cyclones during the cyclone season from November to April. Breakwater Marina is a cyclone-rated facility and has a dedicated cyclone management plan. Marina staff are committed to helping residents and boat owners be prepared for such weather events to minimise damage and for the personal safety of all boaties. Every November staff conduct a marina-wide cyclone audit to check every boat for preparedness for any future severe weather.
The marina is our backyard and we regularly enjoy kayaking and paddleboarding around the marina and just outside the marina entrance along the beautiful Strand foreshore.
Blue skies, sunny days and winter temperatures averaging 24°, Townsville has the ideal climate for a lifestyle on the sea. Husband Warwick summed up marina living the best “the sea is like a magnet, revitalising and relaxing.
“Pulling into the marina after a hard day’s work, there is nowhere else I’d rather be.” ≈