TOURS ALONG THE GREAT BARRIER REEF DRIVE
The Great Barrier Reef Drive takes you from the city to the jungle through a variety of different environments and there are some great tours available that showcase these special places.
This drive incorporates several towns, lots of beaches and two World Heritage listed National Parks, giving endless opportunities for exploration and memorable experiences.
From Port Douglas you can go snorkelling or scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef or see it from above in a helicopter.
You can go sailing, fishing, spot some crocodiles or take a guided tour with indigenous tour guides in Mossman Gorge.
After crossing the Daintree river you will find even more nature based tours; snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef from Cape Tribulation (only 25 minutes and you're out there), jungle surfing, horse riding, sea kayaking, crocodile spotting, guided rain forest walks, exotic fruit tasting, fourwheel drive tours up the Bloomfield Track, there is lots to do at the last stop on the Great Barrier Reef Drive before you head back to the city again.
Some of the tours are very popular, and if you visit around peak times or school holidays you may find that the tour you wanted to do is booked out. Don't let this happen to you, plan ahead and book your tour online before you arrive in north Queensland!
Tours to explore reef and rainforest from Cape Tribulation
Cape Trib Snorkeling
The reef is closer to the coast at Cape Tribulation than anywhere else along the Queensland coast and Ocean Safari will take you out there in only 25 minutes for a half day snorkel tour. Beautiful coloured coral, amazing tropical fish, and sea turtles make for a great trip. Dolphins and whales (in the right season) can be seen too.
Cape Trib Horse Riding
Riding a horse along a remote tropical beach is on many people's bucket list and Cape Tribulation is the place where you can tick this one off your list!
Cape Trib Horse Rides does three tours a day, will pick you up from your Cape Trib accommodatio, take you to the stables, and then set off on a ride through the Daintree rain forest and along a tropical beach.
Cape Trib Jungle Surfing
The most exciting way to see the Daintree rainforest is up in to the tree tops flying through the canopy on zip lines with Jungle Surfing.
Tours depart hourly every day, and experienced tour guides will take you safely up in to the canopy and whiz you through the tree tops, giving you information about the unique flora and fauna of the Daintree.
Cape Trib Sea Kayaking
Explore the Daintree Coast on a sea kayaking tour. No better way to see how reef and rain forest meet, and on this tour you could see dolphins, sea turtles, lots of other marine animals, and even the elusive dugong has been spotted, as well as whales in the right season. Tours depart every morning for a half day tour, and later in the afternoon for the shorter sunset tour.
Cape Trib Nightwalks
The Daintree Rainforest is the oldest rainforest on the planet, it is a living museum of rare and and endangered flora and fauna species, many not found anywhere else. Knowledgable local tour guides can take you on guided walks in this ancient jungle and give you an insight in to how it all works and survives, a fascinating experience.
Daintree River Tours
The Solar Whisper on the Daintree river does six one hour croc spottting tours every day, find them on the left just before the ferry. This is an eco friendly, electric powered boat with instant digital video replay of wildlife action with their unique "CROC CAM"
If you are interested in a longer tour then Dan Irby does a great morning tour, as well as a two hour late afternoon sunset tour.
Tours to explore the Great Barrier Reef from Port Douglas
There are many more tours available from Port Douglas than the small selection here, click here for a bigger selection of tours.
Quicksilver Cruises has a Great Barrier Reef experience perfect for you, no matter if you want get wet, snorkel and dive or stay dry and observe. Quicksilver’s multi-award winning Outer Reef Cruise can take you to stunning Agincourt Reef where you’ll find the widest range of reef activities suitable for families and all ages, swimmers and non-swimmers included. Or if you prefer, set sail in luxury to the idyllic Low Isles, aboard 30 metre sailing catamaran Wavedancer for a relaxed day. Or for more of a thrill try the catamarans Silversonic and Poseidon, with special roaming permits, with 3 spectacular and different Agincourt ribbon reef sites in one exciting day.
Sailaway is a leisurely one hour sail to the stunning Low Isles. Guests have the opportunity to explore this protected coral cay, with white sandy beaches and coconut palms, surrounded by magnificent coral gardens and the coral sea. Sailaway ensures your enjoyment with small numbers ( max 33 guests) and personal attention from our friendly crew. Guided snorkel tour and interaction with sea turtles in natural habitat. Pure sailing experience!
Aquarius Sail & Snorkel
A dedicated snorkel only vessel carrying a maximum of 23 guests, Aquarius is committed to providing each guest with a unique and personalised experience. Indulge in the tranquil waters of the blue lagoon and snorkel effortlessly amongst spectacular marine life including green turtles, parrotfish, fusiliers and clownfish.
Choose from Learn the history of Low Isles with a land based Heritage Walk or observe the spectacular underwater world through the glass bottom boat, how about a 1.5hr sail over the Coral Sea to watch the sunset over the ocean, this cruise includes canapés and is BYO (Aussie slang abbreviation for Bring Your Own Drinks).
From the heli pad in Port Douglas you can take off in a helicopter to anywhere, for a short scenic flight over the town and the beaches, or for longer adventures up the coast or further inland. This is your chance to xperience that once in a lifetime helicopter flight, over the magic blue waters of the Great Barrier Reef, or escape to a secluded island paradise. These scenic helicopter flights depart from both Cairns and Port Douglas.
Calypso Reef Cruises
Calypso is a family owned and operated company providing daily cruises to the Great Barrier Reef from the Marina Mirage, in Port Douglas. Calypso travels daily to three breathtaking sites on the Outer Great Barrier Reef, exploring the amazing marine life without any crowds. Calypso is totally committed to providing an exceptional reef experience.All the fast, stable and comfortable vessels have large deck areas and spacious saloons. The experienced crew provides friendly and professional service. Unwind while you snorkel on amazing colourful coral reefs, take an introductory or certified dive or just relax with a drink - all boats are fully licensed.
Hot Air Ballooning
Hot air ballooning in north Queensland is a must do experience for your visit to Cairns, Palm Cove or Port Douglas.
Be amazed at the balloon launching spectacle, start your day by watching the sun rise over the rolling hills of the majestic Atherton Tablelands.
Float over ever changing panoramic landscapes – the variety is astonishing – outback to rainforest in one sweeping view. Door to door transfers from Cairns and Port Douglas available.
Tours to explore the reef and rainforest from Cairns
There are many more tours available from Cairns than the small selection below, click here for a bigger selection of tours.
Great Barrier Reef Cruise
This cruise takes you out to a moored pontoon on the Great Barrier Reef, where you can enjoy a day packed full of activities; snorkeling with the clownfish, or stay dry and take a ride in a semi-submersible vessel or glass-bottom boat. This day also includes a buffet lunch, fish-feeding presentations and use of snorkeling equipment,and the option of an introductory or certified dive, try your hand at Seawalker Helmet Diving, or take a guided snorkel safari through the coral gardens, spotting the rare marine life.
Mossman Gorge + Crocs
If your time in Cairns is very limited but you still want to see a bit of rain forest and/or Aborginal culture then spend a leisurely day exploring the rainforest on this day trip from Cairns, Palm Cove or Port Douglas. You'll start your day with a gentle rainforest walk around Mossman Gorge led by a local Aboriginal guide. Enjoy lunch at secluded Silky Oaks Lodge before continuing with a croc-spotting cruise on the river and a short tour of stunning Port Douglas on the way back.
Cairns Luxury Cruise
Explore the Great Barrier Reef aboard this sleek, luxury catamaran limited to 75 guests on this snorkel and dive cruise from Cairns! Spend six hours on the Great Barrier Reef at two different snorkel and dive sites. Cruise in style on this comfortable catamaran before taking a glass- bottom boat tour to Upolu Cay with your onboard marine naturalist, where you can either snorkel or scuba dive. Enjoy a delicious buffet lunch before heading to Upolu Reef to continue snorkeling or diving, and a guided snorkeling tour!
Daintree Day Tour
Learn To Dive In Cairns
Take the opportunity to learn to dive while you’re in Cairns! Classes led by professional and friendly instructors are limited to eight students and will qualify you for a recognized PADI certification on your 4-day PADI Open Water dive course. Hotel transfers are included each day, and your course is gradual and safe. Learn basic scuba skills in the classroom, a pool, and confined water dives, then explore the Great Barrier Reef on open-water dives. Once you have successfully completed your course, you’ll be a qualified PADI diver!
Cape Tribulation Tours
Jungle Tours is a long established company that gives you a choice in Cape Tribulation tours; day tours that include all the scenic stops, croc cruise and Daintree rainforest walks along the way, tours that include the above plus jungle surfing, or longer trips that include one or two nights at Cape Tribulation accommodation like PK's, the Beach House or Ferntree Resort. This gives you more time to explore this amazing place.
More tours to explore Tropical North Queensland
There are many more tours available from Cairns and Port Douglas than the small selection above.
You can go sky diving, bungy jumping, hot air ballooning, white water rafting, go on the Skyrail and Kuranda Train, see Aboriginal culture at Tjapukai and Mossman Gorge, cruise the Atherton Tablelands, go on fourwheel drive adventures and scenic helicopter flights, the choice is endless,
Click here for more info on tours.
WHAT WILL YOU SEE ON THE GREAT BARRIER REEF DRIVE?
THE GREAT BARRIER REEF!
This drive takes you along the edge of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, but make sure you hop on a boat from Port Douglas or Cape Tribulation too so you can immerse yourself in this amazing world of wild coloured coral and tropical fish.
THE DAINTREE RAIN FOREST!
While you can see some rain forest in various places along the drive you definitely have to cross the Daintree river to see the real ancient Daintree rain forest, do some of the National Park board walks, swim in the pristine creeks, or book a guided tour in Cape Tribulation to learn more about it.
You can see cassowaries in zoos around the world but meeting a cassowary in the wild is an experience not to be forgotten. This ancient flightless bird has been walking the planet ever since all continents were still joined together as one and dinosaurs roamed the earth. The cassowary is listed as endangered but has been making a good comeback, and there is a fair chance you will see one in the Daintree if you spend a few days there.
LOTS OF BEACHES!
If you love the beach then you will love the Great Barrier Reef Drive, there are dozens of stunning beaches to explore along the way, just in the Daintree there's ten of them already, and even in the busy season there is a good chance you will find one all to yourself.
LOTS OF OTHER STUFF!
What ever you can imagine, you will find it along the Great Barrier Reef Drive. Exotic fruit wines, hang gliding, home made icecream, crocodiles, rainforest sculpture trail, tea, insect museum, cassowaries crossing the road, massage, jungle surfing, Aboriginal culture tours, helicopter rides, More info added soon on the multitude of attractions and sights to see.