Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef Diving Information
Cairns is Australia’s premier, regional coastal city. Nestled in the Tropical North of Queensland, Cairns is ideally positioned to provide locals and visitors with access to two amazing, natural World Heritage listed sites.
The Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage Area was added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1989, as a natural site. Stretching from Cardwell to Cape York Peninsula, these are the world’s oldest, continually surviving tropical rainforests. Home to ancient plants and rare animals, not found anywhere else on earth, a visit to the rainforests is a journey back in time.
No where else on earth do two natural World Heritage sites lay side by side. In Tropical North Queensland, the rainforests slide down to the Coral Sea, meeting the fringes of the Great Barrier Reef. Occupying an area larger than Tasmania and Victoria combined, the Great Barrier Reef is the only living organism that can be seen from outer space.
Thriving in the warm waters of the Coral Sea, the Great Barrier Reef attracts visitors from around the world, who want to swim, snorkel and dive in the clear blue waters, marvelling at the diversity and colour of marine and coral life that lives here.
Over 2,800 individual reef systems combine to make the Great Barrier Reef and perhaps one of the most famous dive destinations is the Cod Hole, which is approximately 240km north of Cairns, adjacent to Lizard Island. Why is this famous? The Cod Hole is home to a family of giant Potato Cod. Although these are wild animals, the Potato Cod are friendly and provide an amazing dive experience.
Other critters you may see while diving on the Great Barrier Reef including Reef Sharks, Green Turtles, Lagoon Rays, Red Bass, Mantra Rays, Barracuda, Bat Fish, Giant Clams, Moray Eels, Sweet Lips and Rock Lobster, and this is just touching the surface, as there are more than 1,500 species of fish that call this natural wonder home. As for corals, there are over 400 different types, including brain coral, soft coral, staghorn coral and coral bommies, to name just a few.
Dive experiences available on the Great Barrier Reef are endless: you can drift dive, adventure dive, night dive, learn to dive or deep dive, you can even take a wreck dive. The choices are endless.
The Great Barrier Reef offers a range of tourism and leisure activities, including aircraft and helicopter tours, sailing trips, cruise ships, dive tours, snorkelling day trips, fishing charters, whale watching and motorised water sports.