Great Keppel Island, GKI

Join me in a GKI Resort Holiday flashback from the 1980s when I stayed at the resort on GKI.

GKI is still my favourite island holiday!

Jennifer Empey at GKI Australia

"I got wrecked on Great Keppel Island"

Flashback to the 1980s

In 1980, I flew from Melbourne to Rockhampton in Queensland.

En route by another small aeroplane flight from Rockhampton to Great Keppel Island.

We called the island GKI. And, GKI is off the coast from Yeppoon.

1980 Photography

Here is a picture representation of what it was like on the island back then. They show some old photos of the Great Keppel Island Resort.

And yet, I can visualize in my mind some of what it used to look like.

Photography was quite different due to the cameras. And they were not digital. Photo taking was much less in quantity due to the expense of developing the film.

And, the photos with me in them, were not taken by me. As selfies weren't a thing back then. The post-production for this post was created by me.

Great Keppel Island Resort and Activities 1980s

When I holidayed at GKI. It was a resort-like accommodation with everything included.

I remember, every day I received the GKI newsletter. It listed organized activities that I could participate in.

At these events, I met other people who holidayed on the island.

I went on walks in the rainforest. And, I did a swimming pool race which included eating a cold pie and drinking a warm beer. And, I dressed up in a hula skirt and participated in Hawaiin night.

I went on cruises to the Great Barrier Reef and watched the sunset sailing on a cruise. And, played on the boom nets and sailed to other beaches on the island. I could collect a lunch parcel and take it with me for lunch for the day.

I played tennis and other games.

On one of these walking group activities, I met Sue. And even though we live in different states. We are still friends today,

My favorite dish was the Moreton Bay Bugs.

Great Keppel Island Resort Old Photos

Jennifer Empey at Great Keppel Island

Me at GKI in 1980

Jennifer Empey at Great Keppel Island

Me at GKI in 1980

Plane at Great Keppel Island

A small airplane landing on the airstrip

Sunset at Great Keppel Island

View from my room

Entrance to Great Keppel Island Resort

Entrance to the Great Keppel Island Resort

Beach, Great Keppel Island

Beach in front of  the GKI resort

The Boom Nets off the side of a Boat

The boom nets off the side of a boat were my favorite activity at GKI.

From the side of the boat, you slid out along the boom. Then, you went down into the nets whilst the boat was moving. The water current was so strong that you had to hold onto your shorts. Luckily, someone had lent me their shorts.

And, I helped others back up higher onto the nets out of the strong current. It wasn't an activity for bikinis.

Boom Nets at Great Keppel Island

Me on the boom nets at GKI in 1980s

Boom Nets at Great Keppel Island

Me on the boom nets at GKI in 1980s

What's a Boom Net Experience Like Now?

See what a boom net experience is like now at Huskisson in Jervis Bay, New South Wales.

Great Keppel Island Now

GKI today is very different from when I went about 40 years ago. About two years ago, most of the GKI resort was demolished after standing derelict for around a decade.

Great Keppel Island resort is quite different from what it was like in the 1980s. I read there is interest in the island being bought by a new owner. That didn't happen.

Now, Queensland government agencies and local bodies are looking into a master plan to develop infrastructure to revive tourism on GKI.

I wonder if things will change. And, it'll come back to its days of fun.

Indigenous Name

The Indigenous name for Great Keppel Island is Wop-pa. And, the Woppaburra people lived on the Keppel Islands.

Where Can I Stay at Great Keppel Island Today?

For Great Keppel Island Accommodation, options are Great Keppel Island Hideaway, and Great Keppel Island Holiday Village.

Great Keppel Island Hideaway

You can stay at cabins and holiday homes at Great Keppel Island Hideaway. And, you'll find beachfront cabins with ocean views. Options include balconies, private bathrooms, air conditioning, and garden views,   Facilities at the hideaway include a restaurant and wifi.

Check Details Read Reviews Great Keppel Island Hideaway

Great Keppel Island Holiday Village

Another option is the tents and rooms at Great Keppel Island Holiday Village. They have balconies with garden views and shared bathrooms.

Check Details Read Reviews Great Keppel Island Holiday Village

And, you catch a ferry from the mainland to GKI.

Yeppoon to Great Keppel Island Snorkeling Trip with Lunch

  • Do you want to experience the GKI of today? Catch the ferry to Fisherman's Beach on GKI from Yeppoon. Yeppoon is on the mainland of Queensland Australia.
  • Spend the day at GKI.
  • Have lunch at the bistro
  • Snorkel at the reefs of Shelving Beach or Monkey Beach
  • Choice of 17 beaches
  • Bring one daypack, swimwear, towel, hat, sunglasses, water, sunscreen, change of clothes
  • Not suitable for wheelchair users

Get Details Yeppoon to Great Keppel Island Snorkeling Trip

Let me know if the sand still squeaks when you walk on it, barefoot!

Where Is Great Keppel Island?

Great Keppel Island is off the coast of Queensland Australia near Yeppoon and Rockhampton.

You can view the location of Great Keppel Island on the map

Pin It For Later!

Where's Your Favorite Island Holiday?
Flashback Great Keppel Island

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Island Holiday at Great Keppel Island Resort in the 1980s

Have you been on an island holiday? If so, what's your favorite island?

I wonder if GKI will return to its former glory and be accessible to more people with the aid of a jetty.

Did you get wrecked at Great Keppel Island Resort? Leave a Comment!