Set your sights to Masig Island in the Torres Strait. A coral cay of rich natural beauty. A living landscape above and below the azure waters, which connect the reefs, cays and islands of this destination. Be welcomed to community and embrace the ancient, vibrant and living culture of the people who live here. Descendants of ancient seafarers and skilled navigators of the fringing and offshore reefs.
Your island home for this 4 day / 3 night adventure is Masig Island, also known as Yorke Island, and part of the Torres Strait, Central Island cluster group. A place of remarkable beauty. A place to connect with nature and culture, on a pristine sand cay surrounded by coral gardens.
All the best adventures start with a scenic flight – in this case you will get two! Firstly, as you depart Cairns Airport on 2 hour flight which skirts along the pristine Northern Great Barrier reef before climbing on a smaller aircraft at Horn Island to fly over the tropical archipelago that is the Torres Strait, on a 40 minute flight to Masig Island. Friendly local guides are waiting to greet you to their island home. An official Welcome to Country by a Masig Island Traditional Owner takes place at this time, as well as a check-in to Council, before arriving at your accommodation at the Lowatta Lodge.
Lowatta Lodge is 100m from the beach and was built specifically to provide safe and comfortable island accommodation. There iS also large open communal area which embraces the surrounds and environment with wide, shaded timber decking throughout. The perfect place for shared meals and camaraderie.
Today is about getting your bearings and learning about the island, the region and the people who call it home. During your lunch we will hold an information session and O&A in an interactive event led by a local guide who is knowledgeable about the area and its attractions. During the information session, a local Masig Islander will present an overview of the coming days, highlighting the key sights and experiences that participants can expect to encounter on the tour.
After the presentation, the guide will open up the floor for a Q&A session, allowing our guests to ask any questions they might have about the tour, island life or the island itself. This would provide an opportunity for participants to gain a deeper understanding of the tour, and to get answers to any specific questions they might have.
As the sun begins to set and temperatures drop, accompany our guide on a walking tour of the community and the surrounding beaches. This is an eye-opening yet beautiful experience of Masig Island, its sights and what makes this beautiful place so spectacular. The tour will also include Council Check- in which is a compulsory aspect for all visits which go to any outer island of the Torres Straits.
Spend the last hours of your first day of travel, relaxing on the north- western side of Masig Island where some of the region’s most spectacular sunsets can be viewed. As dusk falls, a locally inspired feasting-style dinner will be served which highlights the region local foods but also displays the Asian and European influences into the region.
Relax and watch the sunset over the Torres Strait. Later in the evening, a beachfire will be lit (weather dependent).
Today you’ll learn all about the history and people of Masig Island. A place which has played a central position in the Strait’s trading networks, for hundreds and thousands of years. Its people are renowned as skilled navigators, possessing detailed knowledge of the reefs and cycles of the sea. These stories are shared in a relaxed and informal information session.
This evening, join your guide and selected community representatives for a locally prepared food served and enjoyed in in the company of your guide and invited community members to further share stories and learn of Torres Strait Ailan Kastom (Island Custom).
There’s free time to relax before lunch. Your journey of discovery continues in the early afternoon with locals sharing more on traditional Torres Strait Islander life, as well as the impacts of the pearl and trochus shell industry, missionaries and European settlement in the islands.
As the afternoon breezes blow across Masig Island, you’ll be shown traditional hunting techniques and have the opportunity to make your own decorative spear. Sunset Beach is the place for a simply stunning sunset, and as the last golden rays disappear beneath the sea, it’s time for a local-inspired feast accompanied by a display of Traditional Island dancing and singing.
After breakfast, there’s two options available for your enjoyment. Firstly, you may like to kick back and relax. Stroll down to the beach and just enjoy the serenity of this island paradise. The other option is to accompany your local guide to Church. Life changed for Torres Strait Islanders with the ‘Coming of the Light’. Christian missionaries arrived in 1871 and put an end to some of the old ways of life and the inter-island warfare. Today, Christianity remains strong in Torres Strait Islander communities.
At the completion of Sunday mass, stay with church members for a morning tea of fresh locally made sandwiches, tea, coffee and other snacks.
Lunch will be provided at Lowatta Lodge if you are not attending the church experience.
Masig (Yorke) Island is part of the Central Islands, a cluster of sand cays, with beautiful beaches. This tiny cay is everything an idyllic, tropical destination should be. A green gem in a blue sea, measuring no more than 800m wide and 2.7km long, with coconut tree fringed sandy beaches. Surrounded by stunningly clear, vibrant blue waters, home to coral gardens and an array of marine creatures, including turtles and dugongs. The ground level is no more than 3m above sea level and more than half of Masig retains undisturbed vegetation. The island’s permanent population numbers less than 300 and their cultural context has been passed on through languages and traditional upbringing, as a way of life by their ancestors from time immemorial.
If scheduled departure dates don’t work for you, or you would prefer to travel privately, please contact us at [email protected].au, about creating the perfect bespoke tailor- made journey for you, or your own small group with family or friends.
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