The Great Barrier reef is a magnificent natural wonder the divers and snorkelers must see at least once in a lifetime. Relax and learn how to dive from live-aboard ships and enjoy the rich marine life under water. There’s much to do around this area other than diving. Here you won’t get bored and KILROY helps you to get the most out of your vacation in The Great Barrier Reef!
Want to experience the world’s largest and finest coral reef ecosystem? The Great Barrier Reef's impressive 900 islands and 2,500 individual reefs stretch 2,600 kilometers in length along the coast of Queensland. With such diverse marine life and spectacular underwater sceneries, this huge reef is a dream come true for all divers and snorkelers. It's no wonder that the Great Barrier Reed is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site! Thankfully, it is protected by the Great Barrier Marine Park, since it is home to many species of dolphins, whales, dugons, turtles, and rainbow-colored fish.
Where to go
When traveling to see the coral reef, there are several places on the Queensland coast that one can use as a base to sail from. One of them is situated in the beautiful and quaint town of Airlie Beach, located approximately in the middle of the Queensland's coast between Cairns and Brisbane. From this beautiful place, you can see many boats departing from the harbor en route to different coral islands and dive sites. In fact, most of KILROY's adventure tours leave from either Airlie or Cairns. When booking your reef tour, you can choose between a day trip or a trip spanning several days and nights. Everything is included in the multi-day trips, as all necessary facilities are on board the boat. We recommend this option so you have more time to see several great places. A longer trip also gives you more time on board to relax and enjoy the crystal clear water from the top deck.
Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, and Cooktown (all north of Cairns) are also excellent places to depart from. Just remember, the further north you go, the shorter the distance to the reef. In general, you must sail a few hours on avergae to reach the reef.
What to see while not diving
The Whitsunday Islands are a place that every Aussie would love to visit even once. The fine white sand beaches are simply superb. Located about 8 hours from Cairns, the Whitsunday Islands are best explored with a proper sailboat.
Great Barrier reef diving & snorkeling
When you visit The Great Barrier Reef, you can try one or two dives as a beginner, where you are constantly with the instructor. Alternatively, you can take a diving course during one of the longer tours. Consider, for instance, the excellent 5-Day Pro Dive. This trip is organized by our partner, Raging Thunder.
You will have a superb diving experience at the world's largest coral reef and the same is true if you just want to snorkel. At the Great Barrier Reef, there are more than 400 different species of coral and no less than 1,500 species of fish. Also, don't forget all of the other strange and fascinating organisms that you will encounter. Researchers believe that there are still countless undiscovered life forms and species in this area of the ocean.
Unfortunately, the Great Barrier Reef faces many environmental threats, including irresponsible tourism, climate change, and coral bleaching. You can help to protect the coral reef by being a fair tourist while diving or snorkeling. Do not touch anything and leave the corals where they belong. Forget the fish feeding and watch out for your fins so you don’t break any corals.
You will have a cheaper deal if you book your Reef experience with KILROY in advance. Do it early, as the ships might be fully booked upon your arrival.
When planning your trip, remember that the rains will affect the water clarity. December and January are good times to travel, although it is very hot then. The Great Barrier Reef is waiting for you, so don't miss out on this world wonder.