Cairns, Australia: The Great Barrier Reef
Travel Location: Cairns, The Great Barrier Reef, Australia.
Scuba Diving and Snorkel Excursion: We booked months in advance with Silverswift Scuba and Snorkel. This adventure included transportation to and from our hotel, an entire day on the water with up-to 4 scuba dives, snorkel time, a lunch buffet on the boat and diving equipment and wetsuits! Booking was super easy. Transportation to the boat dock was easy with hotel pick up. Once you arrive at the boat dock things were a bit crazy. Many of the boat companies (7) or so that go onto the reef were all located in the same area, so even with tickets purchased ahead of time there was about a one hour wait to go through the lines to still get your boarding pass to get on the boat. It wasn't very organized and many people weren't sure where to go and where the lines ended. In case you forget to pack any of your swim, water accessories there were about 5 shops that sold almost everything you could imagine that you may need. They even had under water camera rentals for people who do not own them. Once arriving onto the boat we filled out Scuba and Snorkel paperwork.
Once the boat got going all you were able to see for miles and miles were blue waters, three shades of blue water, it was gorgeous! Stay tuned for more information and our Youtube video coming soon to learn more and see more from Sarek's diving adventures underwater.
Hotel: The Reef House Palm Cove MGallery by Sofitel (Palm Cove). Palm Cove was a nice area to stay in. Everything from food, ice cream, activities the safe zoned water beaches and more were in walking distance. We had some time to explore and grabbed a pizza dinner at a nice sidewalk restaurant with water views! The hotel was what I would expect for a seaside / beach type town. Our room was a decent size, the bathroom was teeny-tiny... but when you are there to dive you aren't spending much time in the resort. They had a bar for guest to sign out to get drinks when no one was behind the bar to serve, but after a certain hour it closed due to drinking law/regulation in the area.
The shuttle transportation to and from the hotel while prior arranged was very very slow. We lost a chunk of time on our trip due to this. Our recommendation: while we had a rental car on our last day, you should rent one for the entire time and not be dependent on any company in this town. It took us over 2 hours to get to the hotel when the airport was only 20 min away. You stopped at several spots up and down the coast dropping people on and off, they didn't even go in order of locations along the way, very different. When we had the same shuttle transportation arranged to leave town it took them over 2 hours to come and pick us up after our pre-arranged travel time to depart. (Thumbs down!!) While the hotel tried to be accommodating, you can tell that timeliness wasn't something that any of the transportation services recommended to be booked and used, considered.
View across the street from the hotel. Up early and ready to go on our Scuba tour!
Gorgeous views of the water and the beach and the trees!
We hope that you enjoyed our photo tour of the Great Barrier Reef! Stay tuned and make sure you subscribe to our ADR YouTube account as the VIDEO is coming soon! Have questions about our trip? Just ask! Send us a message on the contact us page.