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“We didn't want to return to reality” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lizard Island Resort

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Lizard Island Resort
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Via Cairns, Lizard Island, Queensland 4871, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Lizard Island
Vancouver
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
“We didn't want to return to reality”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

Our family (two sons aged 11 and 16) recently returned from a 3 week vacation in Australia. We spent a total of 8 days on the Great Barrier Reef, with the last 4 days being spent at Lizard Island. (the other 4 days were split between Heron and Wilson Islands) Our time spent at Lizard was idyllic. I am so pleased that it was booked at the end of our trip as everything else would have seemed disappointing after Lizard.

We flew to Lizard on Hinterland Air which takes about an hour. The view of the reef is lovely. You are met at the airstrip by a van which whisks you to reception where a cold cocktail is waiting for you while you sort out paper work. Then you are accompanied to your room where your luggage is waiting for you. On the way to our room we saw our first lizard!! He was massive and just ambled by us as if we were not there. The lizards are fabulous and you are sure to spot dozens of them.

We had two Anchor Point Suites booked. The rooms were bright and comfortable. The ceilings are high and the furnishings are light and in cheerful blue and white. There is a mini bar filled with complimentary food and drinks that is replenished daily. Our children greatly enjoyed that. The bathrooms are well stocked with towels that are replaced several times a day and we had everything that we needed. There are chairs and hammocks out on your deck. There is no internet access except for in the lounge area. This did not bother us at all as we were not there to stay inside. We would pop by the lounge for 1/2 hour each day before dinner and catch up on anything that was happening in the outside world.

The dining area is lovely. It is open and does not have AC so was a bit warm at times. The room has lovely views of the water and is a delightful place to convene to three times a day. There is a resident bird who lives in a hanging nest by the bar and there is an amazing green frog named Gretel who lives by the fridge behind the bar. She has her own mural of a waterfall and a big bowl of water and she is there every night. We have some hilarious video clips of her.

The food, as expected, was fabulous. There are two breakfast menus which rotate. They each offer about 15 options. At lunch there is 3 or 4 options that change daily. Same for dinner. Once a week they have a degustation dinner which we were lucky enough to sample. Their version of a snicker's bar for dessert still has my kids talking. Usually at a resort I can't be bothered to take the time for lunch but there was no way that I was missing a meal at Lizard Island! Everything was gorgeous from the cheese selection, the homemade ice creams that changed daily and all of the enticing menu selections from the kitchen. There was also a great wine and cocktail list that you could select from and there were mocktails and smoothies for the kids. Our kids are fussy eaters but the Chef was happy to whip them up pasta, hamburgers and chicken. I felt that the staff were happy to meet any request that we could come up with.

The common areas were all lovely and open. The lounge had lots of couches and several computers that you could use, if you didn't have your own. It was next to the pool, which was always empty and for your use alone.

The beach(s) were stunning. As per other reviews, there are 24 beaches so that you never had to share. The beach was a 20 second walk from our Anchor Point Suites and the Beach Club was right there. On the main beach, you might find 6 people. The beach was quite long and everyone was spread out. Or, you could sign out a boat and go off exploring and find a secluded beach. If you didn't feel like going to the effort, the staff were happy to drive you to the beach of your choice and arrange for a time to pick you up. We at first set out on our own and then discovered we were lazy and it was much easier to have someone else take us! The staff is very knowledgeable and will recommend the best beach for what you are looking for (snorkelling, turtles, relaxing) Again, the staff are so helpful and whether you set out on your own or in a boat with them, they provide you with a cooler of cold drinks and stacks of towels. You are so well taken care of.

The staff is amazing - ALL of them. They couldn't have been more friendly, helpful or welcoming. They made a point of learning our names, asking about our previous day's experiences, giving us suggestions of things to do. The staff are # 1 at Lizard. We went on two scuba days. The first was an all day trip where we did two dives. The second was a half day trip with one dive. We got to experience the famous Cod Hole. The dive boat is fabulous and has every convenience that you need. A lovely lunch is provided and everyone is always fetching you drinks or sunscreen. The scuba diving was great and there was an excellent ratio of staff to guests. We had a private dive master as our son is only 11 and she was lovely. On the full day dives they have someone filming you the entire time and that evening before dinner the video is played for everyone and you have the option of buying it. Also, on the full day dives, when the boat returns the staff feed "simon" the resident grouper who lives under the dive boat. This is a real treat and is hilarious to watch. Simon is massive and the day we were there he had two nurse sharks jumping out of the water trying to steal his fish. The nurse sharks are like puppies and the staff kept pushing their heads out of the way to give Simon access. Such fun!

We also explored some of the beaches and went snorkelling. The giant clams are out of this world. One of my favorite things that I saw! The coral was gorgeous and lots of bright fish everywhere. We also paddleboarded and tried out the kayaks.

The days flew by and we wished we could stay forever. I wish we had had more time to do some of the guided tours but every minute was packed full of enjoyment. Lizard Island is not inexpensive, but you certainly feel pampered and welcome the entire time that you are there.

Things I liked:
-The food, the beverages, the ambiance, the scenery, the staff, the lizards and wild life, the scuba diving and snorkling (especially cod hole, Simon and clam beds), the beautiful beaches, the comfortable light and airy rooms, the well supplied mini-bars, and again - the STAFF.
Things I didn't like:
-The only fault I came up with is that with the price of the scuba diving expeditions, I felt it would have been nice if the video had been a complimentary memento of your day. Also, there are a lot of insects there (only outside) so you might want to wear bug spray. It was readily available at Reception. We got a couple of little nips during meal times but that stopped with the bug spray.

All in all, Lizard Island was such a special way to finish our trip to Australia. We were relaxed and pampered and full of wonderful memories. The kids loved it and I am certain it will remain a highlight of their trip. It is expensive for a family, especially when your kids aren't partaking in all the wonderful food and wines, but I don't think they'd let us go back without them!!

I hope you get to go - enjoy!

Room Tip: We only saw the Anchor Suites but I can't think that there would be a bad room there.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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303 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (54)
Date | Rating
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English first
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

Where does one start...
I have been so fortunate to stay at the best resorts in the world. "One&Only", Burj Al Hotel, Aman, Four Seasons - suffice to say, my expectations are high. LIZARD iSLAND does not dissapoint delivering a wealth of everything that I could possibly be looking for. I am at peace here with the perfect balance between service, comfort, luxury etc. There is the beautiful compliment between nature and service. Man-made experiences and natures bountiful gifts. The attention to detail on every level is exceptional. Whether it is the charming gentleman behind the bar or the staff that accommany you on the refresher diving course. Dining experiences will take your breath away. There are more choices than you can possibly need.
The food is 7 star and the service is just as 7 star. Something you never see unless dining at a Michelin Star Restaurant. The staff are relaxed, personal and attentive. Your days activities, if you choose to enjoy them, are orchestrated seemlessly. What a credit to Management. Robyn Pontynen the Resort General Manager graciously meets you on arrival from the plane with a beautiful beverage and a big smile and update of what is going on on the island. Straight away you feel that not only is the beauty of the island breath taking, the waters aqua blue but so is the beauty of the many people that make your stay so memorable.
The all-inclusive beverage and food package is BRILLIANT! Not a cent spared. I have a bit of a picky taste and pallate and this will not dissapoint! The champagnes, the ports, the chardonnays and other beautiful wine selections to the food which can be made to whatever is your liking.
It is rare to find a resort where you can relax as peacefully as you are able here.
Coming from someone who has traveled the world many times over, I can honestly say that this is one of the best places on this earth. I have been here twice now and will return many many more times for true pampered pleasure and enjoyment.

PS - There are no KIDS, which, while I think kids are great, I AM THRILLED TO FEEL FAR AWAY FROM THEIR SPECIAL KIND OF MAGIC AND NOISE. I AM THRILLED TO SIT QUIETLY AND UNINTERRUPTED TO ENJOY ALL OF THE BEAUTY.

PSS- (As it is all-inclusive) The fact that you are never asked for a signature or a payment of any kind during the whole of your stay is a beautiful feeling - even farther removing you from the crazy world where most all of us spend the majority of our days.

This is a perfect place - with perfect harmony and balance. I wish any one of you reading this to DELAY NO LONGER. Book your trip and come to a paradise that you will say thank you to God for providing.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

There is something in the air here - its as though I wake into a hypnotic natural state amidst this epic beauty in search of nothing - it is all her before me. The resort lodge provides the luzurious backdrop to the stunning island without which none of this experience would be possible. LIMITED ONLY BY YOUR OWN IMAGINATION HERE - IF YOU CAN THINK IT YOU CAN HAVE IT - ASK AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN. The service is exemplory. The staff are generous, genuine and kind and the general manager is a gift. Her ability to manage her team and take care to each and every guest is 7 star. Thereis a comfort in the luxury that is neither pretentious nor lax. The overall attention to detail is BEYOND. The staff think of it before you do.
The food is inventive and beautiful. I have been to a variety of resorts where the all inclusive package is underwhelming and the wine list and drinks menu are boring and uninspired. NOT THE CASE HERE! Each meal beautifully prepared and specialised. I am gluten-free and so impressed with the variety and specificity of the menu offered me at every meal. The staff is educated to guests food and drink preferences and greets and welcomes you to each and every dining experience with enthusiasm and a specific working knowledge of your preferences.
The DIVING is perfect. You have a variety of choices between half and all day boat dives offering any number of experiences on the ribbon reefs out onto the continental shelf. The diving and snorkeling staff are incredibly well educated and informative. My partner is a little afraid of diving even after being certified and the staff was exceptionally patient and helpful and helped her to feel at ease. After diving with her at a number of places, this is the only place she feels safe.
The snorkeling on the island is beautiful. From the clarity of the water to the warmth and the huge numbers of fish and reef dwelling animals Upon arriving you get issued your own personalised set of snorkeling equipment and fins. There are dingy boats which can be taken out to venture around the island for more snorkeling opportunities. Picnics are available as part of the all-inclusive package as well as the boats and the menu choices are remarkable. Heirloom tomatoes, fresh prawns, salmon, chicken, roast beef, charcuterie and cheese selections.
Lying on the beach and relaxing is perhaps my favorite past time. And while I love children, I am THRILLED THAT THEY ARE NOT WELCOME ON THE ISLAND. I am sure that there are the rare exceptions made but this camelot is not laden with childrens laughs and boisterous voices but instead a calm serene sanctuary dedicated to the uninterrupted beauty and deight of the couples and singles that come to enjoy. A beautiful retreat for the soul.

I have traveled to many exceptional resorts. Palmilla - Cabo San Lucas, Aragilla - Lord Howe, The Excelsior - Rome, The Bellagio - Las Vegas, La Valencia - La Jolla, Torrey Pines Lodge - Torrey Pines, Meadowwood - Napa valley, L'Auberge de soliel - Napa Valley, The Clift - San Francisco, Georges Sanc -Paris, etc. Lizard Island is most certainly at the top of these!

There is a splendor in that there is everything for anyone here. ASK AND YOU SHALL RECEIVE.

Room Tip: They are all beautiful and private and secluded. The Anchor Bay Suites have the best location and si...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

I stayed there 5 times when the dollar was strong. It was a bargain then. It was like paradise. The food and service were unsurpassed and the rooms great. For lunch you can have a basket made with what you want and they will provide you with a motorboat to go off to one of the many beaches to snorkel or just relax. Beach umbrella provided also. Snorkeling is super. It is now very expensive.

Room Tip: All rooms are great. Take a beach bungalow or one on Honeymoon Beach.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tavistock, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2013

We stayed on Lizard Island from the 28th Dec for our honeymoon. I had done a lot of research on honeymoon resorts and wanted this trip to be a trip of a life time and Lizard Island certainly lived up to it. The only negatives I could see from previous reviews were about the internet, lack of TV, keyless entry and the rooms for the price of the resort. The internet and TV were not an issue at all, in fact it was amazing to be able to be rid of these things for a few days. If you were here on business then yes maybe it would be an issue. The internet room is all set up and quiet so they have the facilities if needed. Why would you sit in your room on the internet when you have such amazing views I say!!
I was concerned about being slightly disappointed with the room after ready a few reviews but we were very happy when we arrived. We stayed in Sunset Point Villa (12) and was very simply but tastefuly decorated. Bathroom was great, and we had a constant supply of new towels! As soon as we used one it would be refreshed! When you enter your room there is music playing and the staff have a few little touches which really make it special. Very comfy bed and they have a pillow menu if you dont like the ones on the bed. Plenty of wardbrobe space to hang clothes and put things away. Great day bed and hammock outside, but make sure you have bug spray on in the early evening!!! Little critters were not an issue at all, we barely saw any in the room during our stay.
The staff were amazing the whole time we were there, nothing was too much trouble for them!! It was nice to get to know the staff during our stay and they made a real effort to get to know you and what you liked as well.
Food - the chef was amaxing and we had the degustation beach dinner which was great (althought the food wasnt as good as previous nights its well worth the experience). The menu differs each day and they have a lot of variety, fish, meat etc. If you are a foody you will not be disappointed here. The chef showed us around the kitchen one evening which was a really nice touch too.
Activities - We took out the boat a couple of times but you can get the watersports staff to drop you on a beach and come and pick you up and they make sure that they take people to different beaches so you get privacy. On some areas we were the only people all day. Snorkelling was great and lots of different areas to explore. We also went on the outter reef tour which was also very good, althought we didnt do the diving, but everyone on our trip said it was the best diving they had done. One day Ross the manager of the watersports area took us out and found us a turtle to follow which was amazing!! All the staff are obviously very passionate about the island and the wildlife/coral.
Spa - We had a treatment as part of the romance package and it was great also
Flight - As a nervous flyer I was a bit worried about the flight but is actually not bad at all, we only had 4 people on our outbound flight but you get so distracted by the views that you forget how small the plan is!! its worth it to just get on the plane for that one hour!!
Overall - Amazing amazing place, I know its expensive but if you are looking for a trip of a lifetime, Lizard Island will not disappoint! Unfortunately we cant afford to go there regulary but I think the prices being high keep the exclusivity of the resort!! Although when we arrived all but 1 room was booked, we barely saw any of the other guests apart from at dinner time. Its all really nice to be able to leave your wallet in the room, we found that apart from the dive trips, you really dont need to spend any extra money here.

Room Tip: I think all rooms would be great, if you can afford the Anchor Bay they seem to be the most popular...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

Our flight from Cairns was beautiful, and after landing, we were whisked away to our place and greeted handsomely with sandwiches, sweets, and drinks.
The resort was so, so lovely. The open-air restaurant had excellent food and service with a great view of the bay. Our room on the beach was equipped with spa music, aromatherapy, and refrigerated goodies. Outdoor area had a napping bed, chairs, table, rinsing area, hooks for hanging wet things.
The activity staff were extremely accommodating. We enjoyed paddle-boarding, hiking, and visiting the research station. We are not divers and both of us have fair skin, but we LOVE to snorkel and have done so in many areas of the world. Since our honeymoon 30 years ago in the Tahitian Islands, we have not been so excited about a place. Just around the island, seeing the hundreds of beautiful giant clams was amazing, but we, also, took an all-day reef trip that was incredible!
Supremely remote. Peaceful. Beautiful. Upscale, but not snooty.

Room Tip: Stay in an Anchor Beach room, but visit Sunset Beach in the evenings for a spectacular view.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lubbock, Texas, United States
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2012

My wife and I went to Lizard Island for our first stop on a three week vacation on Australia's west coast and the Great Barrier Reef. We stayed in one of the Anchor Bay Suites which gave us a great sense of privacy, including a patio where we could enjoy the beautiful sunsets. The food and beverage service was outstanding. It was great to not to have to look at prices when deciding on menu choices. The kitchen and activity staff put together a picnic lunch and dropped us off on private beach for snorkeling. We also received instruction on star gazing in the Southern Hemisphere that was breath-taking.
I did suffer withdrawal for a couple of days from not having constant Internet access, but my wife loved it! We hope to return to the resort in the future.

Room Tip: Definitely go for one of the Anchor Bay Suites.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lizard Island Resort

Address: Via Cairns, Lizard Island, Queensland 4871, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Lizard Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Lizard Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:5 star — Lizard Island Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 40
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Lizard Island Hotel Lizard Island
Lizard Island Resort All Inclusive

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