When traveling North along the Sunshine Coast, sailors use Merry Island as a major landmark. Merry Island is one of the weather reporting stations along the coast and it's light can be seen for more than ten miles.
When traveling North from Howe Sound there are few landmarks along the coast. It is comforting to be inside Welcome Passage between Merry Island and the mainland. You know that shortly a number of anchorages and marinas will be accessible.