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“Five star price, three star accommodation & backpacker attitude, mantas.”

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Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Melbourne
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Five star price, three star accommodation & backpacker attitude, mantas.”
Reviewed May 29, 2011

About 80 k (45 min flight) from Hervey Bay by light plane (owned by the resort). Only 10 kg "free" luggage per person, no ferry service. Overall the service was friendly but not that sophisticated like on Heron Island. We felt that the staff requires a bit more training in dealing with guests. E.g. letting guests go first when carrying food on a plate. Dive times should be better coordinated with meal times. A meal half an hour to 1 hour before a dive tends to provide involuntary fish-food. A gaggle of 30 - 40 students were also on the small island, which were understandably very hungry at the end of the day. However, this meant the line for the buffet dinner took quite a while to clear, particularly when off duty island staff joined the line as well, before regular guests could start dinner. This would be easily solved if the BBQ area is used for the students as an "overflow" as it has facilities to keep food warm. Desserts can be shared without a problem. Diving was quite good, the mantas were spectacular! We stayed 7 nights, 4-5 would have been enough in hind sight. Accommodation was basic, we had a "garden unit", which could have done done with a couple of chairs inside. It had a motel like feel to it, not 5 star. We are unlikely to go back.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank SCUBERDIVA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GlennDaniels, General Manager at Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, responded to this review, June 1, 2011
Dear SCUBERDIV

Thank you for taking the time to share your recent experience of Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort. It is always good to get feedback from our guests so that we can continue to improve our product and services.
I would like to address some of your comments to perhaps add further clarification.
In relation to the 10kg allowance - like all airlines, we are governed by weight but the offset of this is the amazing views you get from the air. You are correct in saying "no ferry service" as we are 100km off the mainland and I can assure you the feeling of getting off a plane vs. a boat after travelling 100km in rough water is a far better situation. Lady Elliot Island also has made the decision not to blast into our pristine reef for the purpose of a jetty - it is what makes us a little different from other resorts on the reef.
We have taken on board your comments in regards to the line when dining at the same time as the Uni groups and rest assured a change in operation will be made.
Our accommodation is not 5 star but nor do we advertise that it is. We are a Eco Tourism Resort and I trust that the accommodation was clean and tidy.
Once again, we very much appreciate you taking the time to share your experience.
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Poole, Dorset, England.
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed April 17, 2011

Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort. We stayed in a tented room on a 2 nights3 day Package.
From the moment we took off from Hervey Bay Airport the scenery was amazing, great views of Frazer Island, the Great sandy straits and the Qld Coast, then onto Lady Elliot Island we had stunning views of the Island, as we circled it before landing and we could see manta rays cruising round the Island in the clear blue waters just off shore. The Island is split down the middle by the airstrip and landing was another experience.
We were greeted from the plane by very friendly staff who gave us a quick tour and rundown of the Island rules and customs. I was scuba diving within an hour. The dive staff were friendly and helpfull ( as was everyone) the diving was lovely. The food buffet style was exellent breakfast and dinner, which was included. There were bar snacks and buffet lunch time for an additional charge both were very good standard and reasonably priced, considering you are on a coral island miles from anywhere. Our cabin/tent was fine it had bunk beds to sleep 4 I'm glad there was only 2 of us. It was fine a bit basic,our cabin was cleaned and fresh linen daily. We had shared toilets block and showers which again were fine. If we go for longer I would have one of the larger cabins.
Great snorkling too we saw small sharks, turtles every where, plus huge amounts of fish.
Our only dissapointment was we did'nt see any turtles hatching.
All in all a great place to visit for everyone. If you are scuba diving give yourself a few extra days its worth it, I wish we had. We live in Noosa QLD so we shall be going back.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank PaullT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GlennDaniels, General Manager at Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, responded to this review, April 20, 2011
Dear PaulIT

Thank you for taking the time to share your comments on your recent stay at Lady Elliot Island Eco resort. Fantastic to hear you enjoyed your stay and we will try hard to get some turtle hatchlings organised for next time you next visit.
Regards
Glenn Daniels
General Manager
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columbia, maryland
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed April 9, 2011

My huband and I spent three nights here as part of an Intrepid Travel " short break adventure". This six day package was arranged by Intrepid and we felt the total cost to be reasonable; however we cannot comment on the pricing on Lady Elliot. We wanted to spend some time snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef but didn't want to go as far as Cairns. The logistics was good since the 30 minute flight to Lady Elliot left from Hervey Bay which is an easy train ride from Brisbane.

The eco resort here is this small island so the atmosphere is very friendly. Our plane was met by a staff member who gave us a good orientation to the island and then showed us to our "room". We stayed in a canvas tent with bunk beds. The shower and toilet facilities were in a separate building about 50 feet from our tent. This was adequate for us since who wanted to spend any time inside! There are more upscale rooms available and cabins which would accomodate families.

Breakfast and dinner buffets were included in the cost and lunch was on our own tab.
The food was plentiful and adequate. Snorkel equipment was provided and our package included one glass bottom boat snorkeling trip.

One side of the island faces the lagoon, the other is ocean front. You can snorkel in the lagoon during low tide and on the ocean side any time. The fish are amazing and there were also turtles and manta rays. There were several nature walks or talks available each day that were posted on a chalk board. Or.....you could just hang out and watch the tide come in. The staff members we encountered were helpful and knowledgeable.

Other guests were friendly and it was easy to strike up conversations with many of them. We very much enjoyed our stay. The vibes were casual and low key.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank max'smom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
leimanager, General Manager at Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, responded to this review, April 10, 2011
Dear Max'smom

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience of Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort. We very much enjoy receiving feedback from our guests and it was great to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us.
You are absolutely correct when talking about the amazing marine life that is available to be seen from snorkelling around the island especially with the turtles and manta's that make the island their home.
It was also nice to hear that you enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere that the island is known for, and I am always amazed at the friendships that are formed while on the island who were complete strangers when they arrived.
I do hope we have the pleasure to welcome you back to our slice of paradise.
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Stonington, Connecticut
Level 6 Contributor
193 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
Reviewed March 14, 2011

I first visited Lady Elliot Island in 2003 for its diving. When planning our February 2011 trip to Australia (from the US), I was traveling this time around with my husband and 2 kids, ages 5 and 3, so some of the prior outback camping and similar experiences I had in prior travel to AUS weren't going to work. However, I wanted the kids to see the reef as close as possible, without the infrastructure and crowds that accompany resorts, so I decided to return to Lady Elliot. Yes, it is true that the rooms themselves are not luxurious in any way (although they are sufficiently comfortable) and the cooked entrees are not fine cuisine. However, the chance to stay on such a remote island, right on top of the reef, and see turtles nesting and hatchlings running for the water on the same trip cannot be topped. My five year old daughter learned to snorkle on this trip and spent hours in the ocean enjoying a myriad of fish and coral because the water in the lagoon is so shallow and calm. I haven't been anywhere else that is so perfect for such a young child to experience this first hand. How many 5 year old can say they've seen a manta while snorkeling (that snorkel was from a boat not the shallow lagoon). The kids loved the nesting terns (and the many chicks we saw in our walks on the island) and the turtles as well. My husband and I enjoyed the diving. A fantastic experience all around and I will return yet again someday.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank CMK43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
leimanager, General Manager at Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, responded to this review, March 23, 2011
Dear CMK43

Thank you for taking the time to write about your experiences on Lady Elliot Island. We never get tired of hearing about the children snorkling for the very first time and we were very happy to hear that your 5 year old saw one of our most majestic members around Lady Elliot Island - the manta ray. We look forward to your return.
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Toronto
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed March 8, 2011

I would give Lady Elliot Island a mixed review. We did have a great time but that was due in large part to the other guests that we met and spent time with. The turtles were wonderful and definitely made our stay more enjoyable and interesting.

We were there for 7 days which, in retrospect was a mistake. I wouldn't recommend more than a maximum 5 day stay. There really is very little to do there and the activities that are offered are short in duration and repetitive. After only a couple of days we had covered everything that was offered. It is a great place to just rest, relax but bring lots of books!

The turles were fasinating and we saw several nesting and a number of hatchings.
The island itself is beautiful but there are some shortcomings. The beach is difficult to walk on in many places because of the mounds of dried coral and fallen trees. Shoes are a must and there are very few places where the sand is soft and smooth.
Snokeling is great and the glass bottom boat /snorkel tour was enjoyable but far too short. Another 15 or 20 minutes would have been nice.
Grant, our "flight attendant" who met us in Redcliffe for the flight to LEI was wonderful. From the moment he met us throughout the flight and a few more times when we ran into him on the island, he was warm, welcoming, informative and great fun. If only he was a member of the full time staff. It would have made all the difference.
We were welcomed upon arrival and taken on a brief orientation tour by one of the "activities staff". It was useful and informative but it was clear the young woman, one of 2 "activities staff" who shared the responsibility had done this far too many times and was simply regurgitating the information without any passion and virtually no interest in the guests. The other activities staff could barely hide her contempt for the guests. Clearly they think their duties regarding the guests are beneath them and/or they've been doing this for far too long and need a change.
Alistair, the bartender was wonderful. Always a smile and was more than willing to provide suggestions, information and engage with the guests.
Food was, at best, mediocre. The soup was never hot and much of the food was overcooked, cold or simply inedible.
The rooms are very basic and quite tiny. Our reef room had a double bed, bunk beds, an armoir and a small bathroom. We had cockroaches in our bathroom on several occasions which, needless to say, was quite unpleasant. There were two chairs on the porch outside our room but the room was too small to accomodate a chair. That said, the view was gorgeous and since we were fortunate enough to have wonderful weather during our stay, we spent very little time in our room. Had we had rain, it would have been miserable.
We never managed to get hot water in the shower but again, it was so hot when we were there, a cool shower was actually a welcome relief.
The pool is small and there is so much bird feces on the lounges and area surrounding the pool, it's not a pleasant area to spend any time. The lounges are hard and uncomfortable with no padding.
Everything shuts down by 9:00 p.m. so if you are looking for an opportunity to interact with other guests or some type of night life, don't come here. VIrtually everyone is in their room by 9:00 or 9:30 and since the rooms are so small with no entertainment (there are no televisions or mobile phone reception on the island) you really have no choice but to go to bed. Internet is available at a charge but not available in the rooms.
Overall we enjoyed our stay and made the best of it but we won't be back. It is poor value for the money we paid and I can't say I would recommend it unless you are content with 2-star accommodations and want to get caught up on your reading. While the snorkelling is good, there are many other locations on the reef that offer as good or better in this regard. Staff are unfriendly for the most part when they aren't ignoring you altogether . We were never introduced to the manager of the resort and it would have been nice to meet him/her. I can only surmise that he/she would rather not interact with the guests.
We had really looked forward to our visit to LEI but in the end were quite disappointed overall.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank fishoutofwater
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
leimanager, General Manager at Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, responded to this review, March 23, 2011
Dear Fishoutofwater

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience as we always enjoy constructive feedback which helps us to improve on our product and services.
I have noted your comments regarding some service issues and rest assured we will be following this up as we strive to exceed our guest expectations.

I will of course pass on your comments to our Maintenance Manager in regards to the hot water in your room - as you may have seen, the resort is on gas hot water which is meant to produce hot water on demand - my apologies if this was not the case.
We have noted your comment regarding the bird faeces on some of the lounges which can happen from time to time given that Lady Elliot Island is a bird breeding colony and in fact offers the second most diverse range of breeding birds on the Great Barrier Reef.

I noted your comments regarding no night life after 9.00pm - if you are referring to no television, or music, then yes we have no night life, however we have found that this is why the majority of our guests come to the island to get away from everyday life and distractions. Most nights during the season we offer a island or turtle walk which gives you the opportunity to see such things as turtle hatchlings arise from their nests and make their way to the water or a island trivial pursuit where many of the guests get together to share the days experience.

I certainly do appreciate your positive comments regarding several of the staff and we will make sure that these are conveyed to the staff concerned.

Once again, thank you for your feedback.
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Launceston, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed October 31, 2010

I never knew what I was missing. Now all I want to do is go back! Safe for children, safe to walk around at night, safe and unbelievable snorkelling - turtles, coral, fish (yes including 'Nemo' fish), pretty sting-rays, great museum/educational display, and the friendliest staff I've ever met. Cabins look directly out to coral reef, azure water, turtles and birds! Expect bird poo, the island is home to thousands of friendly little birds - nesting or with chicks. (Remember they were there first and you learn to ignore the bird droppings). All the small children were treated lovingly as it was a great 'family' atmosphere, but there were no baby-change facilities even near the restaurant, no kiddy-friendly pool and just a swing & slide in the playground- a few extras would go a long way for tiny visitors! For anyone over age 7, all the island's attractions were perfect, the surroundings stunning, the snorkelling wonderful, the food wonderful, the island highly reccommended! We can't wait to go back!

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank pollimia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sunnyvale, California
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2010

This is truly a lovely place to visit! The snorkeling and wildlife is amazing, we swam with Mantas, sea turtles, and sharks! The staff is very helpful and friendly. The rooms are plain but are very clean and well maintained. This a great place to visit if you want to relax and spend quality time with your family/spouse. The one draw back is the food, it was not good.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank StefK1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort

Property: Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort
Address: Lady Elliot Island, Queensland 4216, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > Queensland > Lady Elliot Island
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Lady Elliot Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 41
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lady Elliot is a true coral cay island located at the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef, north of Fraser Island. The island is regarded as one of the best snorkeling and diving destinations on the Great Barrier Reef and is famous for its unspoilt coral reef and amazing array of spectacular marine life including turtles and manta rays. Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort provides a range of low key accommodation options ranging from 2BR Island Suites to Eco Cabins for those on a budget. The overnight rate includes: Full buffet breakfast and dinner daily; One free glass bottom boat/guided snorkel tour per person; Free use of snorkel equipment (mask, snorkel, fins); Range of free guided Island activities/tours; and Environmental Management Charge. Scenic flights depart daily from Bundaberg, Hervey Bay/Fraser Coast, Brisbane (Redcliffe) and Coolangatta. ... more   less 
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Lady Elliot Island Eco Hotel Lady Elliot Island

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