Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!

Cairns Esplanade Waterfront

Cairns Esplanade Waterfront – Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours, 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!

Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours, 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!


Are you looking at Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours? There’s so much information out there on the web how do I choose?


Join us for a journey into finding the best Cairns tours with our Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours, 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!


Are you frustrated and overwhelmed by the amount of Cairns Great Barrier Reef tours and information there is online?


I am, I have searched myself and I feel completely overwhelmed by the amount of Cairns reef tours. How are you suppose to find the best day trip that is right for you?


That’s where we aim to inform you with our; Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours, 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!


I have a standard formula that I recommend to anyone trying to figure out how to choose Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours. I have tried to cover all aspects from the point of view of you, the traveler.


We have powerful recommendations for single travelers that are adventurous, couples wanting  a quiet relaxed day, people who can swim and people who cannot. We also cover families with small children and those that want to try scuba diving for the very first time.


If you have any further questions, please leave a comment at the bottom of this article. Let us know if we have missed anything or if you have a specific question you would like us to cover.


So without further delay let’s dive right in! Excuse the pun!


Tip-1: Can you Swim?

Yes, I can swim: If you answer yes to this question, then you can also snorkel. With just a little practice, you will get the hang of it in no time at all.


With this in mind, I would recommend one of the many Cairns day boat operators. Now I know the next question you are going to ask, there are so many to choose from, how do I choose the best one?


The secret to working that out is to ask yourself a question, what would you like included in your day?


If you prefer a relaxed scenic day with just a handful of people, then go to Michaelmas Cay. The reason I recommend this is because lots of people go to the pontoon companies. Pontoons take allot more people so you can end up with a much more crowded experience.


Pontoon companies do serve a purpose, but we will get to that a little later.


My second suggestion is to go on a day snorkel dive boat like Silverswift from Cairns. Silverswift is a little bit more expensive than the other Cairns reef tour operators. But why do you think that is?


It’s easy, Silverswift travel offshore to the outer reef systems from Cairns. They travel further, just over 60klm in fact. Silverswift spend all their time at three important reef systems. Flynn, Milln and Pellowe Reefs.


Just Google these reefs to get an idea of the marine environment.


No, I can’t swim: If you answer no to the question above, can you swim. Then I recommend a floating pontoon company. The reason why is they offer alternative ways to see and visit the reef without getting wet. They offer Semi-submarine rides, glass bottom boat tours, fish feeding and underwater observatories.


If you only have a short amount of time to visit Cairns and would like to see as much as you can. I recommend Great Adventures Green Island and Outer Barrier Reef Adventure.


This is a fantastic day that allows you to visit Green Island for 2 hours in the morning. They then spend the rest of the day on the Outer Barrier Reef Pontoon.


This is perfect for those that want it all!


A second option is to just visit the Outer Reef. Put all your energy into visiting the Outer Reef. This gives you the most amount of time on the reef. The more time you spend out there the more things you will see.


There is a fantastic Cairns pontoon company called Reef Magic Cruises. A local family run company that offers visitors  a complete reef experience. Visiting Moore reef, you get 5 hours to explore and relax. Remember they don’t visit anywhere else, they spend all their time on the Outer Barrier Reef.


Tip – 02: Are you traveling with small children?


If your answer is also yes? then once again I would recommend a pontoon company. The reason why is all the pontoon companies cater to smaller children. E.G. ages 4-14 years old. The transfer boats are big stable catamarans that you can take a pram or lots of extras.


For sun protection, every pontoon has a large shade canopy. They all have children’s play areas and offer swimming equipment and safety gear.


Children like pontoon’s because of all these extra activities. Often children get bored of snorkeling after only an hour or so. Having other activities besides swimming and snorkeling will keep everybody entertained.


Every Cairns reef tour company offers lunch, all snorkeling equipment and morning / afternoon tea. This is standard with every Cairns reef tour company.


Tip-03: Do you want to try Scuba Diving?


From the above information we hope you have been able to narrow down your selection. Maybe you will choose either a sand cay experience, a pontoon company or a day reef boat.


Next it’s time to talk about add on’s. Every Cairns reef tour company offers snorkeling equipment, this is just standard. Once you have selected a day trip that will best suit your needs. You can now think about options and extras.


All the day boats and the pontoon companies give you the option to try diving. This is an introductory first-time scuba dive. You don’t need any experience, but you must be fit with no asthma and no medical conditions. They always charge extra for this experience.


If you’re feeling a little adventurous, I would recommend trying a scuba dive. This is a fantastic experience and will leave you with memories to last a lifetime.


Tip-04: What is Helmet Diving?


So next on the agenda we will talk a little more about helmet diving. A helmet dive is an alternative to scuba diving.


The main difference between scuba diving and helmet diving is you don’t need to be able to swim to try it.


Helmet diving is perfect for people who would like to keep the hair dry, and wear your glasses. With a giant helmet on your head like the Jetsons, you can breath as per normal and walk around under the sea.


So with helmet diving there is no need to be able to swim, you can just walk around underwater.


Like with introductory scuba diving, you will always have a professional dive instructor assisting. After all safety is number one.


Tip-05: Don’t forget to have fun visiting The Great Barrier Reef!


To summarize our article on: Cairns Great Barrier Reef Tours, 5 Tips for Choosing, Save Time & Money with this FREE Helpful Guide!


Don’t forget to have fun! That’s right coming to Cairns for a holiday is a one in a lifetime opportunity for most people, so make the most of it and enjoy yourself.


Go with your gut feeling, go with what feels right for you. Because at the end of the day, you will be joining the tour


The last bit of advice I like to give people is. Every Cairns reef tour company is good! I’m not sure if you have realized this yet but, Australia is expensive! And even more expensive as a business owner.


So companies cannot afford to let things slip, allow people to feel unsatisfied. Word spreads fast and companies will be out of business in no time at all.


You will find every single Cairns reef tour company will give you their 110%. They are all good and all deliver outstanding service.


So the main thing is to decide would you like a Sandy Cay experience, a pontoon company or a day reef boat. Either option you will have a fantastic time. Just remember this is only one day on your life and only one day on the Great Barrier Reef.


Remember the reef is over 2700klm long. It is just over 60klm wide, so in a one day Cairns reef tour it is the equal to exploring the head of a needle in a haystack.


If you have the time, go to the reef as much as you can. The more time you spend out on The Great Barrier Reef, the more things you are going to see!


We hope you learned something from our Top 5 tips for choosing a Cairns Reef Tour that will save you time & money.


Whichever way you decide to go, we know you will have a fantastic time on any Cairns reef tour company. We know because we go!


Clint Carroll

Clint Carroll is the Manager of Cairns Tour Advice & Booking Centre. An adventure travel enthusiast, travel blogger, avid scuba diver and founder of Based in Cairns, Australia. Connect with Clint on Twitter.

Clint Carroll

Clint Carroll - Chief Travel writer and Scuba Diving enthusiast at Cairns Tour Info. Follow him on Twitter.

Do you need help choosing?

Can't decide? We have personally been on every Cairns reef and diving trip. We can help you choose the best tour, to suit your experience and budget.


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