A few key points to consider before we head off on the day.

Remember, any time you are out on the water the weather can change quickly! We recommend that regardless of the weather forecast you always bring a rain jacket, sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat. Wear comfortable shoes. Its not fun walking in those beautiful high heels on a moving boat deck! Regardless of how good the shoes look, you run the risk of looking less than steady on your feet! Think and plan ahead and give us the best chance to make sure we can do our thing to make sure you enjoy your time with us to the max!

Like the idea of a cruise with a difference?

We hope to, with this blog post explain, why you should have your next adventure with us, at Sunshine Coast Afloat.

Simply put, if you love the sun, salt and sea then look no further than Sunshine Coast Afloat!

For starters, if anyone knows a good time it’s our team! We have extremely experienced guides and state of the art equipment – this combination leads to the ultimate, enjoyable way to see the beautiful Sunshine Coast. Together with this we offer an amazing range of water-based activities, all of which can be modified according to the conditions of the day. And every budget is catered for! We offer deep sea fishing & crabbing charters, whale watching, ocean jet boat thrill rides, bucks and hens parties, guided kayak fishing tours, coastline & canal cruises, water taxi services and much much more!!

To give you a taste of exactly what to expect when booking, we’ve received some great feedback from just one of our amazing recent experiences – A bucks cruise that took place on Saturday 25th March 2017.

The boys that booked this adventure brought along their surfboards, drinks and a massive breakfast cook up – things that are all encouraged when booking with us at Sunshine Coast Afloat. Toby and Rob were the skippers that looked after the boys on this trip. Touring them around Mooloolaba and even taking care of the breakfast cook-up so the boys could make the most of the surf! Each and every party can be catered the way you want, with this one really focusing on the boys and just having the best and most chilled out day possible! They had such a great time they are considering making it an annual outing!!

Cooking a Breakfast Feast on the BBQ on Crusader 1.
Cooking a Breakfast Feast on the BBQ on Crusader 1.

Another great thing about Sunshine Coast Afloat is that if you have an idea, just ask us and we will find a way to make it work! We pride ourselves on finding ways to organise and alter the trip the way you wish; whether that’s bringing your own music, drinks, food ect. We want you to have the most memorable day, so we will go to all lengths to make this happen!

Another recent review after a fishing charter:

“We had an excellent experience with Sunshine Coast Afloat! Not only would we recommend them to others but we would happily go again. The staff were super helpful and happy to chat and get amongst the people. Great knowledge of fish and awesome enthusiasm! Personally what impressed me the most was the attention to safety and the pride they took in keeping the boat clean”

Felicity Tripp 2017 (Google Review).

Sunshine Coast Afloat were the winners of the 2014 Sunshine Coast Business Awards, and runners up in 2015! It was a privilege to receive the top prize and realise our efforts and promises were paying off!

We will do everything possible to ensure you will have an amazing time!

We are getting ready for the 2017 Overnight Fishing trips!

Been thinking about how you could do something very different this winter for your fishing trip? Here at Sunshine Coast Afloat we have been experimenting with 18 hour overnight charters for the last few years. I say experimenting because it does take a lot of effort to get such long trips exactly right. Weather, locations, passenger and crew numbers, departure and return times, even the supplies needed on such trips needed are all key components that we have over that time tweaked, changed and improved upon over that time. The reason for this extreme effort? Because these trips are REALLY SPECIAL. To us as well as our customers! They are the trips we do not want to take any chances on. The trips which we want our customers to know that every aspect has been put under a microscope for, all with the focus of ensuring it is as close to perfect, for them, as any outdoor activity can get to!

One of the additions this year is simple. Advance booking notice to our regular customers and those that have requested the dates when available. That email was sent to everyone a few days ago. On Monday (3rd April) the dates will go live.

Another, much bigger change, is the manner in which we are now using the moon cycles and trip options. Because we have learnt that the weather forecasts HAVE to be stating perfect conditions for these trips (No room for guessing/hoping), which of course means that we have a very large percentage of these trips being cancelled due to weather, We have this year set 4 trips per month. 3 to 4 days before the Full Moon, 3 to 4 days After the Full Moon, and then as a backup, the same time frames for the NEW MOON in the same month. We hope that this will stop the “no charter this month” situation we found ourselves in so often last year. The reality is that we will work on one trip a month still, but have up to 3 alternative time frames in most cases should the weather forecasts not align perfectly for the main dates.

Another major change is the onboard equipment for cooking. We tried a normal marine BBQ – too small. We tried a full size “normal” outdoor BBQ – too unreliable in the conditions out on the ocean. All in all the only real option was to have a custom made marine BBQ. One made for marine conditions, but in a size that allows us to cook for 12 people in comfort and without sacrificing anything!:

 

As well as this, we are in the process of upgrading our fishing tackle (again). Although we will remain loyal to our main gear as supplied by Rapala for the Okuma Reels (overhead and Spin), we have recently started testing the newest releases they have available. So far so good, but these much stronger reels have shown some issues with the rods we have been using for the last 2 years. As such we are currently in the process of testing a higher quality range of rods to make sure that if you wish to use our tackle on any of our trips (you are more than welcome to bring your own on our charters!) you can be assured that you will be using premium gear!

There are a few more changes that both have been made and that are in the process of being made, but more on those in other posts!

Does this type of trip sound interesting? You can find more detail on them here: OVERNIGHT FISHING TRIPS

Want an email on the dates? Just fill in the form on the right hand side of the product page, email us via [email protected] or call us on 0402 625 825  We are here to help!!

 

The Christmas Lights in Mooloolaba are set to shine again!

December is always a magical time of the year in Mooloolaba. So many of the home owners put up amazing Christmas light displays which are only able to be seen from the water. And of course, every year we have the Mooloolaba Boat Parade with many boats all decorated in the Christmas spirit. The river and canals tend to be fully lined with people watching these wonderful displays sailing past them.

At Sunshine Coast Afloat we are almost finished putting our new Christmas lights display on the Jet Boat as well. This year, for the first time, we have entered Hela-Va Jet into the Christmas lights parade as well. We have opened this up to our customers to be part of, so if you want to be aboard one of the vessels in this very special parade, give us a call. We still have seats available!

And of course, we will be running the 1-and-a-half-hour Christmas light cruises every night during December (excluding Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve) as well. Remember, we can get into those smaller canals where larger vessels just cannot go. You really do get to see the very best of these wonderfull displays!

christmas-lights-04

We hope to see you aboard soon!

It seems like a LONG time since we have had truly pleasant conditions on a weekend. For the last 5 months the swell has averaged close to the 1.7m mark and winds have averaged around the 18 knot mark! Tough conditions for anyone heading out deep sea! But the forecast for this weekend looks near perfect for deep sea fishing!! :

Sunshine-Coast-Weather-Forecast-for the 27-Nov-2016

The reason I have only put up Sunday’s forecast is because we are already fully booked on both trips for the Saturday, and I would hate to give anyone a false impression that they could still get a spot on one of those trips. However, as is common this time of year so close to the school holidays, Sundays trip is only half full! Just the one trip at this point. a 5Hr charter in what are forecast to be the best conditions of the entire weekend! I honestly cannot recall the last time I have seen a forecast stating “Smooth seas, and add in just 7 knots of wind!!  Should prove to be a lovely time out on the ocean!

We are heading out, so if you think this sounds like a trip you want to be a part of give us a call or book online ( Click here for the 5Hr page on our site ). We would love to have you aboard!

It’s that time of year again when Spanner Crabbing will be closed from midnight November 20 until midnight December 20th, 2016. We thought it appropriate to tell you a little about Spanner Crabs that may interest you.

The purpose for the closure is to protect the spanner crabs during their breeding season when they are most vulnerable. The closure gives the crabs a chance to spawn and helps replenish crab stocks. Spanner Crabs are also known as the Frog Crab or Red Frog Crab. The first/front legs are “spanner” shaped and the rest are flattened and have numerous short bristles. The spanner crab’s body colour varies from orange to red. Spanner Crabs prefer bare sandy areas.  They remain completely buried in the sand for most of the day, but they emerge rapidly when food appears.  Sharks and turtles feed on spanner crabs. Both often take advantage of crabs being caught in nets.Spanner Crabs are found around most of the Australian coast from NSW north to southern WA. On the East coast of Australia spanner crabs don’t seem to like to go much further south than Coffs Harbour, and they don’t go much further north than 1770, so typically the main area’s are in pristine unpolluted waters from the top end of Fraser Island to Mooloolaba. They are caught commercially, mainly using dillies, but also as a by-catch of Prawn trawling, off southern Queensland and northern NSW. Mooloolaba currently exports Spanner Crab to Japan, China, Hong Kong, and New Zealand.

shannon-and-spanner-crabs

A crab’s growth isn’t continuous, but from a series of moults that happen when it reaches the size of its current shell. Moulting is triggered by hormones. A new ‘cuticle’ (hard protective layer) is secreted under the old shell. The crab rapidly absorbs water, splitting its shell along suture lines, then backs out of the old shell. Substances stored within the crab’s body are rapidly redeposited to harden the new cuticle into a larger shell. The fluid in the body is replaced with meat during a period when the crab feeds voraciously.

Amazing how nature works!  We hope the crabs spawn well and we get a good season next year.

 

The Sunshine Coast Food Trail was launched by famed Sunshine Coast chef, Peter Kuruvita, at an event at Mooloolaba’s Rockliff Seafoods recently.  There local spanner crabs are featured on Peter’s new SBS TV program ‘Coastal Kitchen’. Visit Sunshine Coast have a new interactive website, which we are part of, that enables visitors to create their own personalised food trail taking in the region’s best producers, markets, restaurants, cooking schools, events, wineries and brewers.

allan-johnson-having-spanner-crabscustomers-and-spanner-crabs

 

 

Sunshine Coast Afloat is our new brand name.

The well known, existing brand names – Fish n Crab Deep Sea Charters, Mooloolaba Jet boat and Coastline Cruises will become products moving forward, rather than stand alone brands. The change has been brought about through 2 main drivers.

  1. Social Media. Social Media is a key component of any modern business. It all seems great to have constant updates etc, but when you think about the various social media forums – Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Instagram, Snap chat, Pintrest, LinkedIn etc etc, you start to get a feel for the almost full time job that it is just to keep all of them going for a single business. Imagine that for 3 (Well, 4. See the next point). Add on websites, brochures, advertising, Tourism and business memberships costs and you can imaginer it can quickly become rather overwhelming!
  2. New Product Offering. Guided Kayak Fishing tours is another new addition to our services. Its becoming very apparent that Kayak fishing is not a flash in the pan phenomenon but a true and rapidly growing sport here in Australia. The Sunshine Coast has some of the best estuary fishing for this in Australia, and there is a clear need for the service. We believe that we have been able to put together the best value kayak fishing offering in Australia! Check it out here!

All in all, we are about to bring the next level of marine and water based tourism experiences to the beautiful Sunshine Coast!

Still not content with just offering the same standard trips as you can find pretty much everywhere else, we remain fully focused on making sure that we do things the way you (and we) really want them to be. Fun, adventurous, adrenalin filled or clam and relaxing. Sunshine Coast Afloat is a one stop location where you will be able to choose the activity that suits you perfectly all secure in the knowledge that from the very moment you find us to the the time you get back home you will have been looked after the way you deserve!

Sunshine Coast Afloat – For whatever floats your boat!

And with Sunshine Coast Afloat all direct bookings get a free Rod and Reel to keep!

World wide kayak fishing is growing faster than any other activity!

Commonly referred to a “yak fishing” (who knew the work kayak was too long!) it does take skill and local knowledge to make the best of the advantages yak fishing has to offer. Thats why a guided kayak fishing tour is a great way to head out. The Sunshine Coast estuaries a brimming with all manner of species of fish, in areas motorised boats just cannot get to.

At Sunshine Coast afloat we also want to make sure you not only have a great time, but also the best value for money! As such every direct booking gets a free Kayak style high quality Rod and Reel to keep! Thats a retail value of approximately $200.00 included in your trip for which you are only paying $140.00 !!!!!! We can’t do better than that!!! You walk away with more in value that what you pay for the trip!

Our guides know these waters better than anyone and when you add in the amazing value deal this trip offers you,it will be obvious why only Sunshine Coast Afloat is running guided tours here! Fish the local estuaries, or for the more experienced and adventurous anhers we can, with prior arrangement organise a local dam fishing tour as well! The small additional permit and travel cost are well worth the incredible array and variety of fish available in these controlled waters! Or maybe a different Sunshine Coast body of water has your interest? Let us know and if we can assist we will! Locations such as the Namour river area are a rarely fished location that offer great variety and excellent quantities of fish. Of course the more remote we may need to increase the duration of the tour.

One of only 2 such rides in Australia!

Had enough of the the normal flat water jet boat thrill ride? Bored with constant spins that do little more after the first 1 or 2 than make you dizzy, and not to mention uncomfortably wet? Let us give you a ride out on the open ocean! We will be spinning on waves and doing moves that will have you wondering if boats should really be able to do these things! This ride puts real excitement back into the Australian jet boat ride!

And with only 2 of these boats operating and offering truly extreme Jet boat thrill rides in Australia, this is definitely a “Bucket List” experience!

Able to operate in conditions that other boats cannot, the saying “the wilder the weather, the wilder the fun” is perfectly suited here!

Give us a call or book online and get ready for the ride of your life!