Townsville’s ideal position alongside the Great Barrier Reef makes it home to some of the most beautiful islands on the east coast of Australia. It also boasts some of the best diving sites around the islands and serves as a base for many conservation and research projects.
Magnetic Island, Hinchinbrook Island, Orpheus Island and Palm Island, provide fantastic snorkelling, diving, fishing and sailing experiences, or the opportunity to simply relax.
Magnetic Island is a popular island full of secluded bays and 23 beaches, meaning there is plenty of room for everyone. Just a 20-minute ferry ride from Townsville, Magnetic Island boasts natural beauty and serenity within a thriving community.
The Island is made up of rocky granite headlands, hoop pines and sheltered bays and beaches, forming a spectacular coastline. Perfect for the nature-lover, the island is over two-thirds National Park which means it's teeming with wildlife including rock wallabies, koalas, possums and over 100 bird species.
Providing a wide range of accommodation options, the island offers something for every budget as well as plenty of dining options by the water.
Hinchinbrook Island is the biggest island on the Great Barrier Reef and is completely uninhabited. The perfect location for adventure, Hinchinbrook Island offers spectacular hiking and camping along the 32-kilometre Thorsborne Trail - rated one of the top 10 walks on the planet.
On the eastern side of Hinchinbrook Island is a secluded beach called Ramsay Bay. It’s a long stretch of beach, with a high dune that extends through the bush to an estuary, which is famous for fishing. Ramsay Bay is harder to reach; however, a guided tour or private yacht will get you there.
A maximum of 40 people are permitted to camp on the island at one time, in order to protect the biodiversity and environment of the island.
Orpheus Island National Park caters for everyone from those seeking pure luxury to the self-sufficient camper. You can reach the island by boat or helicopter.
Orpheus Island provides plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in nature – from snorkelling in the blue-green reef to bird and wildlife watching.
Palm Island is well-known for its unique Indigenous heritage and rich cultural history. It is the traditional country of the Manbarra people and home to the Bwgcolman tribal people.
The beautiful clear waters of Palm Island make this a perfect fishing location. The island is accessible by boat or plane.
Further south is Horseshoe Bay, in the small seaside town of Bowen. This quiet, relaxed slice of paradise offers one of the most charming bays in Queensland. Horseshoe Bay is popular for divers and snorkellers, and provides a wonderfully relaxed place to explore, close to fantastic bushwalking trails, accommodation, and restaurants.
How long does it take to get to the Great Barrier Reef from Cairns? It very well may seem like a simple and easy question to answer, however, there are so many variables that make the answer not quite as straight forward as you may have initially thought.
No matter whether you are a snorkeller or a certified scuba diver, there are number of amazing Great Barrier Reef experiences that are a once in a lifetime absolutely ‘must do’. And a Minke Whale snorkel and dive Expedition is one of those that should be on your list!
Thinking of becoming a Certified Scuba Diver and looking to do your learn to scuba dive PADI certificate? Do you wish to learn to dive with a high quality professional company that has an outstanding reputation for not only skill but also safety and can match this with some of the best liveaboard dive boat fleets on the Great Barrier Reef?
This tour is special in so many ways, and is unrivalled to all other reef tours in Far North Queensland. First of all, it has the shortest open water crossing to get to the Great Barrier Reef. Fantastic news for anyone prone to motion sickness. Although this tour is a ‘Reef’ tour, it includes a ‘River Cruise’ on the journey there with Island activities on arrival. And a huge PLUS to guests that like to avoid the crowds, it has one of the lowest passenger capacities of all the island tours with a maximum of 100 guests. The destination is to an uninhabited continental island called Normanby in National Park which is part of the archipelago of Frankland Islands. It is located 10km offshore from the mouth of the Russell and Mulgrave Rivers at Russell Heads, which is approximately 45km South-East of Cairns. The Normanby Island has an abundance of wildlife not only in the water, but also on the island itself. The island is pristine, and has its own rainforest and a fringing reef not far out from its sandy shores. There are also coral gardens located further out from the island for the those that want to explore the deeper waters.
This is not a blog, it is a pitch on how good this Great Barrier Reef 2 day 1 night liveaboard dive trip from Cairns is such good value. One of our team members wrote it because she thinks it is such an amazing good value Great Barrier Reef tour, she wanted to write about it and put it on our Barrier Reef Australia blog page. We were not sure it was appropriate to pitch a single tour but we decided on free speech and free opinions so read more if you are inclined, or go to another page now. From our wonderful Great Barrier Reef Tour Specialist Chelsea Are you looking for a good value liveaboard Great Barrier Reef scuba diving adventure from Cairns without the crowds? Do you want the best dive deal money can buy in Cairns? If your answer is yes, then check out what deals we have on offer with our Great Barrier Reef Tour 2 Day 1 Night Sail, Snorkel and Scuba Dive tour!
If you are scared of the water and the creatures that live there or have never been exposed to an aquatic life in your younger years, but still wish to live out that lifelong dream of seeing the iconic wonders of the world the Great Barrier Reef, then that is okay, we have a tour that will enable you to see the coral reef from above the water and also below the water’s surface without you even getting your hair wet!