Visiting the Great Barrier Reef

If you’re planning a trip to the land down under, the Great Barrier Reef is a must-see! The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s single largest coral system. With the broad, shallow continental shelf of tropical northeastern Australia providing an ideal pedestal for growth, this coral complex reaches as far as 160 miles offshore and more than 1,250 miles from north to south. The Great Barrier Reef covers 135,000 square miles and is home to more than 400 types of coral reef, colorful fish and sea life. It can be viewed by boat, plane, helicopter, or underwater observatories. There are hundreds of tour options available for viewing and experiencing the Great Barrier Reef, something for everyone! These are some of the Great Barrier Reef Tour options available: ·Diving. There are several different tours available daily for divers, departing from Cairns and Port Douglas. Tours are typically between 6 – 9 hours, include lunch and the vessels range from small high speed luxury catamarans, to large catamarans that have their own platforms on the outer reef. ·Snorkeling. These tours are very similar to the dive tours, except that you don’t have to know how to dive. They also depart from Cairns and Port Douglas, are usually between 6-9 hours, and have a variety of vessel types to choose from. Many of the snorkel tours can be combined with the dive tours. ·Fishing. While one-third of the Great Barrier Reef park is a no-fishing zone, there are many tours available daily for the other 2-thirds. ·Sightseeing. If you prefer to just relax and stay dry, there are plenty of sightseeing tours available, including semi-submersible boats to platforms featuring underwater observatories. ·Helicopter Tours. Experience a bird’s eye view of the reef with a flight tour! These tours are usually between 30-60 minutes long, and operate year round, subject to weather conditions. ·Great Barrier Reef Cruises. If you want to spend more than just one day on the reef, there are cruise options ranging from 2-7 nights, on sail boats that only hold 10 passengers, or small cruise ships that hold up to 50 passengers. Contact an Australia Specialist to start planning your dream vacation to Australia today!