The Great Barrier Reef is one of the great wonders of the world and a top place for a diving adventure. The great naturalist David Attenborough said ‘the most exciting natural experience of my life was the first time I dived on a coral reef. Being on the reef is a revelatory, thrilling and unbeatable experience.’ From above the sea surface however you’d wonder what the fuss is all about.
So let’s hop aboard a live aboard dive cruise and find some of the underwater marine treasures of the northern Great Barrier Reef.
But first let’s find somewhere to sleep before your big scuba diving adventure. Cairns is a natural jumping off point to visit the Great Barrier Reef and has a gazillion hotels, villas, caravan parks and hostels to bed down in.
If you’ve deep pockets Pullman Cairns International Hotel is a five star hotel in downtown Cairns. Cool down in the outdoor swimming pool, relax with a treatment at Vie Spa or dine on local seafood in Coco’s Restaurant. If you’ve got time and a hankering for something sweet mid-afternoon their High Tea is very swish.
Alternatively if your budget is more lean there’s a heap of backpacker hostels around town, Gilligans being one of the best known. Historic Floriana Guest House is one of those ‘million dollar locations on a beed budget kind of place – it’s right on the Cairns Esplanade.
Explore more local itineraries via the RELATED links below.
Part of the Quicksilver group, Pro Dive Cairns is Australia’s premier scuba diving school and Outer Reef live aboard dive trip operator. They’ve been around since the early 80’s so there’s a fair chance you’re in good hands with some of the best underwater guides in the business.
Offering PADI scuba diving courses from beginner through to professional level, live aboard dive trips to the Outer Great Barrier Reef offer the opportunity to learn new skills or refresh some old ones. All in the surrounds of some of the planets most stunning waters to popular sites like the famous Cod Hole. They’ve a heap of boats and itineraries to choose between from three to seven day trips.
Depart before breakfast from Cairns Marlin Marina. Between breakfast and lunch the first dive takes place. It’s fully guided with a Dive Master for those divers who haven’t been in the water for a while.
As the boat steams to a new location lunch is served before the second dive of the day. The boat then moves to an overnight anchorage on the outer Great Barrier Reef with time for snorkelling and relaxing before dive number three.
Dinner is served before dive number four – a night dive! To keep things safe and familiar the night dive usually takes place at the same site as the afternoon dive. Keep a close eye out for our sleeping turtles, crustaceans & the occasional reef shark.
After everyone is out of the water desert is served before divers and crew collapse into bed with a waterlogged yet satisfied exhaustion.
Day 2 looks much like Day 1. Only better! As the boat moves to some of the famous outer reef dive sites you’ll have your GoPro on speed dial.
Eat. Dive. Eat. Dive. Snorkel. Dive. Eat. Dive. Eat. Sleep. This is about the program for Day 2. Can you keep up?
Species to look out for include splendid gorgonian fans, giant clams and bump-headed parrotfish. Night two should see you collapse into bed even more exhausted and satisfied after a full day in and on the water.
Sadly, this is the last day of liveaboard bliss. It starts early with a dive before breakfast before moving on to the final dive site and the last dive for this trip.
It would be unfair to name each individual dive site visited on this trip as each cruise is weather, current and visibility dependent. However to whet your appetite for some of the wonderful underwater world Prodive Cairns visits check out Pellowe Reef, Miln Reef, Thetford Reef and Flynn Reef. We’re pretty sure you’ll be booking a spot onboard quicker than you can squeeze yourself into your wetsuit.