Michaelmas Cay on the Great Barrier Reef is a small, low-lying sandy island surrounded by a spectacular fringing reef. Your tour to this beautiful sandy island from Cairns includes a range of family-friendly and adventure-filled activities: snorkel, dive, take a glass bottom boat tour.
On our Cairns dive and snorkel tour you can be as active or relaxed as you like, the choice is yours!
Snorkel in the calm waters off Michaelmas Cay
Great for families and first-timers, you can snorkel straight off the beach into the calm, shallow waters of Michaelmas Cay. The fringing reef surrounding the Cay is rich with colourful and varied marine life and is renowned for its abundance of giant clams. Around 90 per cent of the Reef’s diversity is in the top four metres of the water.
View the coral reef from a glass bottom boat tour
Hop on a glass bottom boat and get a fish-eye view of the stunning underwater scenery. This is a fabulous way to experience the beauty of the Reef whilst staying dry and is perfect for non-swimmers.
Dive the Great Barrier Reef off Cairns
Experience what it’s like to breathe underwater on an introductory scuba dive (extra cost) in the shallow, calm waters off Michaelmas Cay. You'll receive a thorough briefing and participate in practice exercises before you commence your dive adventure. No experience is necessary and you’ll have an experienced dive instructor by your side the whole time.
Michaelmas Cay is a small, vegetated sand island surrounded by a spectacular fringing reef. It is located on the western tip of Michaelmas Reef 43km north-east of Cairns.
Heaven for nature lovers and bird enthusiasts
Declared a national park in 1975, Michaelmas Cay is an important bird sanctuary and home to over 23 species of seabirds. At the height of nesting and breeding season (during summer months) up to 20,000 birds have been observed.
The Cay is also rich with a myriad of sea life including green sea turtles (which occasionally nest there), molluscs and hundreds of species of tropical reef fish including Humphead Maori Wrasse. The reef surrounding the Cay is known for its abundance of giant clams.
Families and first-timers will love the easy access of snorkelling straight off the beach into the calm, shallow waters of Michaelmas Cay. The reef surrounding the Cay is rich with colourful and varied marine life and coral formations.
All your snorkelling equipment will be provided and a briefing will be given by your guide on how to use your equipment as well as tips on how to snorkel, to ensure you have a comfortable and enjoyable time in the water.
If you would like to learn more about the Reef, for an extra cost you can join a guided snorkel tour with a marine biologist.
If you prefer to stay dry as a non-swimmer, you can view the Great Barrier Reef from the comfort of a glass bottom boat.
On this 30-minute tour, you'll cruise quietly over the water's surface and have a fish-eye view of the Reef and its inhabitants. View pristine coral, colourful fish, giant clams and maybe even a sea turtle as you cruise through this amazing underwater world.
The shallow, calm waters off Michaelmas Cay offer a perfect environment for first-time scuba divers. No experience is necessary and you’ll have an experienced dive instructor by your side throughout the dive.
After a briefing and some basic skills practice, you’ll be ready to commence your dive adventure amongst the stunning coral formations and colourful fish.
At the completion of your first scuba dive, you’ll receive a certificate of recognition and wonderful memories to last a lifetime of your Great Barrier Reef tour in Cairns.
Check in is at 8:00am at the Reef Fleet Terminal, boat departs at 8:30am and returns at 5:00pm
January - December
Does not operate on Christmas Day
8.5 hours (approx)
Scuba Diving Restrictions
Yes, a lot
Loved our trip - staff & organisation on the trip, fantastic
Response From Barrier Reef Australia
Hi Shirley, thanks for your feedback. Ocean Spirit is a beautiful vessel and The Tour Specialists are pleased you experienced the fantastic service and experience at Michaelmas Cay this vessel is so well known for.
Well organized friendly service
Response From Barrier Reef Australia
The Ocean Spirit Crew are a great team to visit the Great Barrier Reef with and the Tour Specialists are pleased you enjoyed your day on the Great Barrier Reef & Michaelmas Cay.
All cancellations must be in writing. Please note that all cancellations will incur an administration fee. Please see our terms and conditions page here for details prior to booking.
Operator's Cancellation policy:
For cancellations after 4pm on the day prior to travel a 100% cancellation fee will apply.
For cancellations between 12 midday and 6pm on the day prior to travel a 50% cancellation fee will apply.
For cancellations before 12 midday on the day prior to travel no cancellation fee will apply.
On rare occasions, services can be subject to the effect of weather or unforeseen circumstances.
Should a cruise not operate for any reason passengers will be offered an alternative day of travel or a refund will be authorised.
Prices are AUD, per adult and include all levies fees and taxes.
Tour Code: 125