Trees are snapping like twigs and roofs are on the verge of flying off homes as vicious 200km/h winds pound Australia's Whitsunday coastline.

Ex-pat kiwi Tania Lewis is seeking refuge in her Jubilee Pocket home not far from Airlie Beach, which is directly in Cyclone Debbie's path.

The Airlie identity, who runs a tourist tuk tuk business Just Tuk'n Around, says she is terrified by the winds that are now barrelling through the township.

"We've got 200km/h winds and the neighbour's roof is just about to come off.


"We've got trees down and we've still got the worst to come."

Lewis said she was seeking refuge in her bedroom, which was the safest room in her home as it had the least number of windows.

"It's very frightening and you can't go anywhere or do anything," she said.

Lewis was keeping an eye on large trees flying around her neighbourhood as the cyclone intensified.

Meanwhile Kiwis holidaying on Hamilton Island say they are being hammered by the cyclone but so far they are safe.

"It's a bit rough here," Ally Price told the Herald.

"Last night was very scary because this place is covered in glass and things were flying everywhere. The roof is coming off in places [and] there is a bit of leakage. The outside of our villa is getting hammered. The outside fans are all broken and have fallen off."

She said thankfully power had not been disrupted.

Queensland Police say the cyclone is now starting to hit the Whitsunday Islands and is forecast to cross the mainland about midday local time.