We decided to stay at Tangalooma Resort for my birthday weekend. I had been to Tangalooma many years ago in the 90s when I was young with my family. We had such a great stay during that time we had always wanted to go back, but of course, we just never found time to revisit. I was super keen to return all these years later to the beautiful Island Resort and to see how much it had changed since our last visit.
Tangalooma Resort is on Moreton Island, the third largest sand island in the world and is located just 40 kilometres north-east of Brisbane. Tangalooma used to be a whaling station in the 50s and 60s until they turned it into an Island Resort in the 80s.
Tangalooma is very beautiful, with an extremely laid back and relaxing atmosphere. It certainly is a perfect place to “get away”
Ferry Transfers to Tangalooma Resort leaves daily from Holt St Wharf at Pinkenba, Brisbane. The high speed catamaran takes 75 minutes to reach Tangaloona Jetty and is wheelchair accessible via access ramps from both Pinkenba and Tangalooma jetty.
I had no trouble boarding the ferry in my electric wheelchair, however large wheelchairs might have some trouble due to the narrow boarding ramp in Brisbane.
We stayed in the accessible room 72 at Kookaburra lodge. This room holds four people with a King bed and a Single Trundle Bed that’s sleeps two. The room isn’t overly large. However, it was large enough for me to move freely around in my wheelchair. The accessible bathroom in this room is small, with just enough room for me to move around. The shower area is fairly tight, so those who require extra room might struggle. I was provided with a shower chair for the bathroom without issue, and it was waiting for me on my arrival.. The view from the accessible room balcony was amazing, it over looked the tennis court and out to Moreton Bay’s crystal blue waters.
Tangalooma Resort is wheelchair accessible with disabled toilets, step free walking paths and ramps throughout the resort. All public areas such as the Fire and Stone restaurant, Dining areas, B&B Bar, Beach Cafe, Lucky 7 Convenience Store and Eco Centre are step free.
Tangalooma has two beach wheelchair available for guests who are staying at the resort. We were able to use one of the beach wheelchairs during our stay at no cost to explore the fantastic white beaches.
I had to use pillows to support me in the Tangalooma beach wheelchair because it is so big. Unfortunately, we did run into a bit of drama while we had the beach wheelchair. After spending a fun afternoon on the beach we had to go back to our room for a bit to get ready for the evening, but because the beach wheelchair is so wide it wouldn’t fit in the lift to our room. We were told it was fine to leave the chair downstairs near the lifts, thinking it would be safe there, how wrong we all were! When we returned, the wheelchair had disappeared!
We went to the rangers thinking they might have returned it to its home at the Eco centre, but they hadn’t. By this time every ranger on Tangalooma were looking for this beach wheelchair that had oddly just disappeared!. Luckily I was able to borrow the 2nd beach wheelchair from the Tour experience team for the dolphin feeding that evening. Thankfully the beach wheelchair did turn up later that night back in the exact location it disappeared. It turns out two people decided to take the wheelchair for a joy ride. It was disappointing finding out someone would take a wheelchair, but I was very relieved it was returned safe and sound.
On Saturday night, we were excited to do the Wild dolphin feeding that Tangalooma Resort is renowned for. I was able to use the beach wheelchair to get down to the beach. Mum then carried me to a plastic chair that I sat on while in the water with the dolphin. The rangers at Tangalooma were absolutely amazing. They were so helpful and super friendly. Because the plastic chair wanted to float in the water, one of the rangers had to hold it down while the other helped us feed the huge but gentle wild dolphin. We were in lane one with the older dolphin as he is a bit more patient then the younger dolphins in the other lanes. The water was very cold, but it was an amazing experience and definitely worth freezing for.
All guests staying at the resort can participate in the nightly dolphin feeding. The Tangalooma Team try their best to accommodate guests with special needs to participate in the dolphin feeding. They understand everyone has different abilities, so they encourage guests to discuss their individual needs with them.
During our stay, the Beach Cafe takeaway kitchen and Fire and Stone Asian style restaurant were open for dinner. They have the Beach BBQ Bistro option, but it was unfortunately closed during our visit. The food selection at the resort we felt was relatively limited. The Beach BBQ might have been a better option for us if it was available. All Dining areas are wheelchair accessible on Tangalooma.
Tangalooma offer a number of activities on the island to suit guests of all abilities, from the more physical island activities such as Sand surfing and Scrubber diving to the less adventurous activities like kookaburra feeding talks and pelican feeding.
Whale Watching Cruise: During whale season from June to October Tangalooma offer 3 hour Whale Watching Cruises departing from the Tangalooma Jetty. The Whale Watching Cruise is wheelchair accessible as it is on the same vessel as the Tangalooma ferry service. Viewing is accessible inside the luxury vessel and also outside.
Helicopter Flights: After the morning Whale Watching Cruise, we decided to try our 1st helicopter ride while on the island. We weren’t sure how we would manage to get into the helicopter, but we were keen to give it a go. Once we got up close to the helicopter, we knew we would handle the transfer ok. Bruce, our helicopter pilot, was such a nice guy and was so patient and helpful in accommodating us. Mum picked me up and put me in the helicopter and then pushed my wheelchair out of the way until our return.
The helicopter ride was amazing! Tangalooma is so beautiful from above, with the stunning white sand and shining blue water, the view was just breathtaking! We had such a great experience on the 10 minute Tangalooma helicopter flight. It was undoubtedly the highlight of our weekend away.
We had such a great weekend at Tangalooma Resort on Moreton Island. The resort is very wheelchair friendly and welcomes visitors of all abilities. The island is beautiful and very relaxing, and is a perfect spot for a weekend getaway in Brisbane.
To find out more about Tangalooma and its wheelchair friendly facilities on the island, visit the official website or the Tangalooma social media pages listed below.
In my opinion I give Tangalooma Island Resort a rating of 4 for wheelchair accessibility, and a rating of 4 stars for the overall experience.
* I was not financially compensated for this review. The review is based on my own opinion and personal experience.*