Going down under at the Great Barrier Reef


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Oceania » Australia » Queensland » Great Barrier Reef
December 4th 2007
Published: December 29th 2007
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Day 252 (04.12.07)

Continuing our fun-filled Cairns style action holiday, today we would be taken beneath the waves to visit the famous Great Barrier Reef. We only had a day to see the reef and wanted to do a three dive day, only offered by about 3 of the seemingly hundreds of dive companies in Cairns. We went with another recommendation from Raging Thunder as everything had been great with them so far.

Having had a bit of a nightmare with communication between various tour companies - it became apparent that our planned tour (kindly paid for by Ryan for our wedding prezzie) to Cape Tribulation had been booked and unbenown to us cancelled. This news came as a bit of a shock to us, however instead of our Cape Tribulation trip Ryan, we are thrilled to say that we were able to reallocate the funds toward todays diving - thanks a million fella, it was an amazing day and something we have both been looking forward to the whole trip!

Having been collected from our hostel we boarded the sleek Silverswift boat and realised that this would be a truly luxurious dive experience compared to the ones we'd had so far in Thailand and Borneo. We were welcomed aboard with the usual disclaimer forms but also with hot drinks and cheese rolls - Mark was very impressed from the off!

As we sped out towards the reef we met our dive master Sean who went through the usual briefings with us and before we knew it it was time to get geared up. Out on the back deck all our kit wad already asembled and all we had to do was put it all on - a real treat!

Our first dive of the day was on Flynn Reef at a place called Gordons. A lot of the coral is dead here but the algae that grows on it is eaten by turtles so a visit to this site pretty much guarantees a turtle sighting and we weren't to be disappointed. We also saw two large moray eels, one of which swam straight for us as we tried to move out of its way!

We were treated to more sandwiches and muffins in the break between dives as our tanks were refilled for us and we moved quickly on to the next site. Our remaining two dives, another at Flynn Reef and one at Milln Reef, straddled a very tasty lunch and both were fantastic. The coral was stunningly bright and colourful and there were many different types of both soft and hard coral. We saw loads of gorgeous fish including a small reef shark and a massive giant clam. We were also able to hand feed a tiny piece of food to some friendly clownfish (Nemos).

In between the excellent diving we also managed to squeeze in some time snorkelling spending the maximum possible amount of time looking at the reef!

After our final and what we thought was the best dive of the day we reboarded the boat to cheese and biscuits and tea and cake. What a feast we'd been supplied with! As we munched we watched the video that had been taken during our dives impressed at our stylish manouevres in the water. We filled in our log books with Sean on the way back to Cairns to record what we'd seen on our dives.

We decided to make the trip to Cape Tribulation under our own steam so we didn't miss out so our day ended with some planning and preparation for the tour that we'd be embarking on in the next couple of days, taking our new van Nora out for her first excursion as the newest addition to the Hayward family.


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