For beginners, the PADI Open Water Course is where your diving experience will begin. Options include the budget offering, which runs over two ‘classroom and pool days’, plus two day trips to the Great Barrier Reef. Or you can choose the Overnight Experience, the Night Diver package, or the Complete SCUBA Package. The aim of all these options is to have you certified is the safest, most efficient manner, while having a lot of fun.
The Advanced Open Water Course is the next step for beginners as they refine their skills, allowing the diver to dive to a maximum of 30 metres.
Other courses available include the Rescue Diver Course, Divermaster Course, Instructor Development Course and SCUBA Refresher.
And if you started your dive training elsewhere and need to complete it, a PADI Open Water SCUBA Referral Course is also available.
Whether you’ve a learner or you want to pursue a career in diving, we have the course for you. Depending on what you’re after you’ll spend a mix of time at the Cairns dive facility, undertaking pool and classroom time, as well as time out on the Great Barrier Reef.
Following is an overview of each course, who it’s tailored to, the length of each course, and what’s involved.
The PADI Open Water Diver Course is the world’s most popular and widely recognised SCUBA course. It is for those who hold no official SCUBA qualifications.
Designed for the traveller who is short on time. This includes two days of pool and classroom training during the first half of the course, followed by two day trips out on the Great Barrier Reef. You will be certified to dive to a depth of 18 metres upon completion of this course.
Another option is the four-day, one-night package on the liveaboard vessel. One of the major attractions of this package is students will spend a night on the Great Barrier Reef and wake up to the sun rising over the horizon. Once all the required training is completed you’ll be able to take your first ‘fun dive’ on the last day. As with the Budget Course you will spend the first two days in the pool and classroom of the Cairns diving facility. At the end of the course you’ll be certified to dive to a depth of 18 metres.
This five-day, two-night option is the most popular learn-to-dive option. Following is an outline of the itinerary for this package:
Days one and two are held at the Cairns dive facility. You’ll be picked up from your Cairns city accommodation at 9.00am. At the dive facility your PADI Instructor will take you on a tour and will help you complete the paperwork. Yourb asic medical information will be collected and your BMI will be checked. The remainder of the morning will be spent in the classroom, learning the basics of SCUBA theory.
As meals aren’t included in the package it’s recommended you bring a packed lunch. Fridges and microwaves are available for use.
It’s in the afternoon that you’ll be introduced to diving in the purpose-build pool. After a small treading-water test the first day is complete.
At about 5.30pm the couresy shuttle will return you to your city accommodation.
After the 9.00am pick up from your Cairns city accommodation it’s straight into the pool for a swim test. You’ll need to swim 200m continuously. It’s then time to get your SCUBA gear on for more time in the pool testing your new skill sets.
There will be a break for lunch after which all students will finish and review the SCUBA theory and to finish off the day you will have a short multiple choice quiz.
At 5.30 pm the shuttle will return you to your city accommodation.
You’ll be collected at 7.30am from your Cairns accommodation for an early check in at the dive centre. Any luggage you don’t want to take on board the overnight vessel can be left in the storage facility. You’ll need to take the luggage you want to bring with you for your overnight stay onto the daytrip vessel.
After check in is complete you’ll be taken to the Cairns Marlin Marina to board your boat. During the 90-minute trip to the Outer Great Barrier Reef you will be briefed on the day’s itinerary.
Once at the reef you will don your dive gear, conduct the SCUBA safety procedures and enter the water for the first of the two open water training dives. You will then be transferred to the liveaboard vessel after your tropicalbuffet lunch at approx. 2.30pm.
Dinner will be served aboard this evening and if the conditions are favourable you may even be able to participate in a night dive.
Days Four and Five:
Wake up to the sight of the sun rising over the Coral Sea as you look out to the Great Barrier Reef.
Before lunch you’ll gear up for two more training dives and that’s it, you’re now a certified PADI SCUBA diver. After lunch you’ll go on your first pleasure dive and in the evening you’ll have another chance to participate in a night dive.
Day Five is nothing but pleasure dives. After lunch it’s time to pack up as the transfer vessel is scheduled for a mid-afternoon pick-up to take you on the 90 minute ride back to Cairns.
You’ll be taken back to your city accommodation via the dive facility to pick up your stored luggage if needed.
With nine training dives and four leisure dives you will rack up a lot of diving experience in a short amount of time. Plus, in addition to being able to dive to 18 metres this Complete SCUBA Package will also see you walk away with the certification to dive to depths of 30 metres. Some of the best dive experiences require you to go deeper so it’s definitely worth the investment if you want to get the most out of your new-found skill.
Of the total six days’ duration of the course, only the first two will be spent at the Cairns city facility in the classroom and pool, as with the Night Diver Package. The remaining time will be spent out on the Great Barrier Reef aboard the liveaboard vessel. You’ll wake up to the sun rising over the reef and will also experience two night dives.
Thanks to the PADI referral system, even if you have completed only part of your dive training elsewhere, you can finish it off on the Great Barrier Reef with our Referral Course.
You must provide the following documentation as proof of what you have completed:
PADI Referral form (must be less than 12 months old)
Completed self-assessed medical declaration form
From there it’s a choice of three different options for completing the course:
Two Day Trips to the Outer Great Barrier Reef. You will return to Cairns each afternoon. This includes four training dives and one fun dive.
A Two-Day/One-Night Liveaboard Trip. You will stay one night on the Liveaboard boat and return to Cairns the following day. This includes four training dives and one fun dive.
A Three-Day/Two-Night Liveaboard Trip: Includes four training dives and five fun dives, including one night dive.
This course is about advancing the skills you learnt in the Open Water SCUBA Diver Certification. At the end of this course you will be a more experienced and confident diver, able to dive to depths of 30 meters.
No classroom or pool time is required. The small amount of academic work required involves reading the relevant chapters in the PADI Adventures in Diving Manual and completing the knowledge reviews at the end of each chapter.
The minimum practical experience required for completing your PADI Advanced Open Water course is two days and one night. This will give you five training dives and two fun dives.
A three-day, two-night option is also available, which will give you five training dives and six fun dives. Or you can spend even more time on the liveaboard vesse. Speak to one of our consultants who can easily arrange this for you.
This course is about broadening your perspective to help others avoid harm and is divided into three sections: knowledge development, skill development and practical application.
The course will run over four or five days and you will learn to sharpen your observation skills, prevent and manage problems and help others prevent problems.
If you do not hold a valid First Aid certification you will complete the PADI Emergency First Response (EFR) course on the first day.
Itinerary: Day One and Two
Pick up from Cairns city accommodation at 9.00am.
The first day will be spent in the classroom if you do not hold a current First Aid certification.
It is recommended you bring a packed lunch as lunch is not included. Fridges and microwaves are available.
The afternoon will be spent on theory for the PADI Rescue Diver course.
Pick up at 5.00pm to take you back to your city accommodation.
As per day one, pick up at 9.00am then it’s straight into finishing off the theory and sitting the final exam.
Pool sessions start at mid-morning.
After lunch the activities will focus on fine-tuning the rescue skills in preparation for the open water section of the course.
Transfer back to hotel at 5.00pm.
This is where the fun really begins; training dives out on the Great Barrier Reef!
7.30am pick up from Cairns city accommodation. Check in luggage you do not wish to take on the liveaboard vessel into the dive facility before heading to the Marina. You’ll be required to take the luggage you do want to take overnight with you.
After boarding the fast transfer vessel that will be your day trip vessel for day one, your instructor will brief you during the 90-minute journey to the reef.
The first dive is a fun dive followed by a tropical buffet lunch.
After lunch the rescue training will start in the water.
At 2.30pm you’ll be transferred to our liveaboard vessel where training will continue.
Dinner on board, followed by a night dive if you’re keen. The bar is open until 10.30pm but keep in mind the morning will be busy with in-water training. RSA restrictions apply.
All training will be finished in the morning after breakfast.
The four-day participants will be transferred to the fast transfer vessel at 2.30pm. After arriving in Cairns you’ll be taken to your accommodation via the dive facility to collect the rest of your luggage.
If you’ve booked in for the five-day package you’ll have another chance for a dive in the afternoon.
After dinner you’ll have a chance to jump in the water again, followed by dinner and then a night dive.
This morning you have time for three fun dives. Enjoy!
Be ready for the transfer vessel at 2.30pm.
You will be transferred to your city accommodation once back in Cairns.
If it's been a while since your last dive and you want to refresh your skills before going on a dive trip, refresher courses help with this.
These courses are split into 2 components:
Pool session where you will familiarise yourself with SCUBA equipment and practice your skills under the supervision of a PADI professional. This will run in the morning from 9.00 – 12 midday approximately.
Theory refresher which focuses theory, specifically dive planning and the use of dive tables. This will take place in the afternoon.
You can choose to do either the morning or afternoon session, or both.
Great Barrier Reef
January - December
Monday - Saturday
Scuba Diving – minimum age 12
Scuba Diving Restrictions
All cancellations must be in writing. Please note that all cancellations will incur an administration fee. Please see our terms and conditions for details prior to booking.