Doing a Great Barrier Reef one day tour has to be on top of the list of things to do in Queensland. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most fantastic places you can probably see in Australia or even on the whole planet. There are a lot of very cool places in this huge country, but doing a Great Barrier Reef one day tour or spending even more days there is a must do in my opinion. This wonderful coral reef will absolutely leave you speachless in any way.
Unforgettable Great Barrier Reef one day tour
I wanna start this post by saying straight from the beginning, that the Great Barrier Reef one day tour was one of the best things I did in Australia. This beautiful coral reef is definitely something really special and you will not find anything comparable on our planet. However not everything about the Great Barrier Reef one day tour was enjoyable from my point of view. But just like always, I can only give you own personal opinion about it.
I guess, this sight is on everbody’s list anyway, but there are a couple reasons, why the Great Barrier Reef one day tour has not been 100% perfect for me even though it was something I will never forget.
Great Barrier Reef one day tour: History and facts
The Great Barrier Reef is the biggest coral reef on the planet and it lies on the north east of Australia. Overall almost 1.000 islands belong to the reef and it has a size of 347.800 km², which is massiv. You can actually see the reef from outer space. One of the mentioned island areas are the Whitsundays, where me and my girlfriend went on an amazing tour to as well.
Besides that, the Great Barrier Reef is a protected UNSECO World Heritage sight. But nowerdays it unfortunately is almost completely destroyed by pollution and the global warming. In the last 25 year the coral quantity has been decreased by more than 50-60 %. This number will probably climb up to 70-75 % within the next 5-10 years.
The Great Barrier Reef itself has been found by a British explorer named “James Cook” in 1770. It started to grow 600.000 years ago and it is basically devided into an inner and an outer reef. The Great Barrier Reef one day tour mostly takes place on the outer reef.
In total you can find about 440 different coral species, more than 1.500 fish and sponge species, 5.000 molluscs, about 800 echinoderms, 500 different kinds of seaweed and about 215 bird species. You can also find 6 out of 7 turtle species, different whales and the very endangered dugong. It is a paradise for biologists and scuba divers.
Tourism at the Great Barrier Reef
Nowerdays tourism is the biggest revenue stream at the Great Barrier Reef. About 4 billion dollars are made by more than 820 touristic companies like this one every year. There are different kind of things, that can be done. You can book a normal Great Barrier Reef one day tour, which most people do. But you can also go for more days or do sailing tour as well as a scenic helicopter ride. Additionally you have the opportunity to go on a diving safari, which basically is a multiple day scuba diving tour.
Another cool way to explore the reef is to get on a submarine or an underwater observatory. You can have a look at the wonderful corals and fish life without getting wet 😉
Great Barrier Reef one day tour: What you’ll do
First part: The journey
As I mentioned, most people go on a Great Barrier Reef one day tour. That’s what I did as well. It is a good way to explore the reef and you do not spend to much money on it (195 $ per person). You will most likely go to the outer reef with a speed boat. The trip includes food, drinks, 1 free dive as well as snorkeling gear. So pretty much everything you need.
During the journey you will get an introduction for the scuba diving as well as some basic rules (for example: not touching the corals, etc.), which are all common sense. The drive takes a while and it can get very ruff. So make sure to prepare for that by taking medication against nausea. I definitely recommend that. Even with medication you might have a ruff time, depending on the weather though. The fact, that nobody told me before, was quite anoying.
Second part: On site
Once you have arrived, it all goes down pretty quick. You will get a wetsuit, your BCD and a mask. After that, you’ll be “thrown” into the water 😉
The dive instructor explains to you what you have to do – breath, equalize and blow water out of your mask (that’s diving basically) – and then it starts. You will go down to about 8 – 10 m and have a look at the wonderful underwater world. You’ll get a picture with nemo (can be printed) and you will see some other really cool fishes, that you are even allowed to touch. I don’t know the name of the fish anymore, that we were allowed to touch, but it was the softest animal ever 🙂 After a couple minutes it’s all over already.
When everyone is finished, you’ll get lunch and afterwards you can go snorkeling for about one or two hours. The snorkeling is absolutely fantastic. I even saw my first wild turtle on that day 🙂
Once the snorkeling is done, you have to get back to where you started. Most people start their Great Barrier Reef one day trip from Cairns and I did too.
What bothered me
This trip was absolutely unforgetable and definitely worth its money. The only thing that bothered me was how they organized the scuba diving. Everything happens just way to quick. Because of the fact that it was my first dive ever, I was very nervous and that got even worse under water. It really ruined my first dive experience, even though I now love scuba diving and the underwater world at the Great Barrier Reef looks amazing.
Nevertheless, for people, who have never done a scuba dive and, who tend to get a bit nervous (I am usually not), I would recommend to do a proper scuba diving license first. Otherwise you might have the same problem like I did.
Great Barrier Reef one day tour: What I have learned
The Great Barrier Reef one day tour was an incredible experience for me. I have learned a lot again. Especially two main things – one personal and one general one:
- I always loved the underwater world, but this tour really showed me, that I had to get a scuba diving license. Scuba diving is such a relexing thing to do. You only hear yourself breathing. Nothing else. It is just like meditation, but with a way better view. I recommend to anyone, who likes the ocean, to get a license, if you have the opportunity. Also, because you’ll learn a lot about the enviroment, which leads me to the second point.
- Everyone, including myself, really has to do more for the enviroment. We are all responsible for our planet and we only have one. As cheesy as that might sound. It starts with small things like putting your rubbish into a trash bin and not throwing it on the streets or into the ocean. Additionally I now believe, that we should all spend some money for an envorimental fund or something similar.
This is why I put a link here, so that everyone, who reads this, has the chance to do something good. I regularly do too, so maybe you are interested as well 🙂
Ultimately I just wanna say: Think twice about what you do to the enviroment. Otherwise the next generations (our kids) won’t have the opportunity anymore to go on a Great Baarier Reef one day tour. And that would be a shame…
Want to know more about the next highlight in Queensland? Read here