Far North Queensland
Snorkeling

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Our most recommended Far North Queensland Snorkeling

From Cairns: Fitzroy Island Full-Day Adventure Tour

1. From Cairns: Fitzroy Island Full-Day Adventure Tour

Fitzroy Island was once part of mainland Australia, before being separated by rising waters. Over time a fringing coral reef surrounded the island, providing a sheltered home to a variety of fish and coral species. Explore this marine wonderland on a day tour from Cairns, crossing by ferry to enjoy wilderness hiking trails and snorkeling adventures. Choose from a range of packages, including transfers for you to explore on your own, or a package including snorkel or glass-bottom boat activities. Explore the Island's 339 hectares of lush rainforest that covers 94 percent of the island and is protected and managed as a National Park. Walking trails are suitable for all levels of fitness, allowing you to explore areas of the island at your leisure. The fast catamaran departs from the Marlin Marina, with check-in directly on the vessel. Cruise south along the calm waters of the coastline to reach Fitzroy Island in just 45 minutes, giving you up to 7 hours to explore the tropical island.

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From Cairns: Fitzroy Island Return Catamaran Transfer

2. From Cairns: Fitzroy Island Return Catamaran Transfer

Depart from Cairns Marina and visit Fitzroy Island, a national park covered in lush tropical rainforest and boasting granite outcrops, open woodlands, mangroves, coral beaches. Walk to the lighthouse, dine at the restaurant, or relax at the famous Nudey Beach, voted the best beach in Australia. This return catamaran transfer gives you 6 hours to explore paradise at your own pace. During your time on the island, you will be able to explore with self-guided rainforest walks to the summit, lighthouse, secret garden, and Nudey Beach or, soak in the magic of the island by snorkeling, diving, and kayaking. With up to 6 hours of free time, you will be able to explore the island through self-guided rainforest walks to the summit, lighthouse, secret garden, and Nudey Beach or, soak in the magic of the Great Barrier Reef by snorkeling, diving, and kayaking. At Fitzroy Island, you can snorkel the fringing reef only meters from the beach. You also have the option to bring a picnic lunch or purchase a casual lunch from the Fitzroy Island cafe. Extra activities include Foxy's Bar & Café, Pacific Island Store, snorkel hire, dive, and activities center - all available on the island at an extra cost. Depart Fitzroy Island at 4:15 PM for the leisurely, relaxing cruise home. By 5:30 PM, arrive back at Cairns Marina. 

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Cairns: Full-Day Glass Bottom Boat Snorkel Tour

3. Cairns: Full-Day Glass Bottom Boat Snorkel Tour

Discover the lush rainforest of Green Island on this full-day snorkel tour and encounter some of the many marine animals that call the island home. Climb aboard the modern, air-conditioned catamaran "Reef Rocket" to cruise over to this idyllic part of the Great Barrier Reef, and enjoy a full-day reef tour just 45-minutes from Cairns. Snorkel and dive among the reef fish and coral gardens, or stay dry on a spectacular semi-submersible submarine or glass-bottom boat to discover the underwater life in comfort. Alternatively, simply laze on the white sandy beach and soak up the sun.

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From Cairns: Green Island Eco Adventure

4. From Cairns: Green Island Eco Adventure

Boasting a lush rainforest that is home to over 120 native plant species and colorful bird life, Green Island is surrounded by coral gardens and abundant marine life. The tropical island, just 45 minutes from Cairns offers the unique opportunity for a combined reef and rainforest tour. And with the choice of 3 daily departures, the Green Island eco adventure is perfect for a half or full-day experience with up to 7 hours on the beautiful Great Barrier Reef island. Your cruise includes the choice of an informative glass bottom boat coral viewing tour, or use of snorkeling equipment to snorkel directly off the sandy white beaches. Whether you’re up for adventurous activities or island relaxation, you’ll be spoilt for choice. You can explore the island’s lush rainforest with a leisurely self guided walk, see the reef from the glass bottom boat coral viewing tour, snorkel from the beach, or take a refreshing dip in the island swimming pool. With an abundance of optional activities, you can scuba dive, take an offshore snorkel excursion, walk underwater with Seawalker helmet diving, kayak, or even take to the sky in a scenic helicopter flight. There's even the Marineland Melanesia crocodile habitat on the island! The island’s well appointed day visitor facilities include a pool bar, dive shop, plus restaurant and food outlets, where a delicious range of lunch, snacks and refreshments can be purchased.

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Whitsundays Ocean Rafting Tour: Snorkel, Walk & Whitehaven

5. Whitsundays Ocean Rafting Tour: Snorkel, Walk & Whitehaven

Take off on the ride of your life in the beautiful Whitsunday Islands. Ride, beach, snorkel, and bushwalk as you embark on the perfect Whitehaven Beach tour, visiting both ends of the world-famous beach. Climb aboard the fastest day boat in the Whitsundays as you depart from Airlie Beach. Experience a fun ride, adventure, and education on super fast semi-rigid inflatable vessels capable of speeds of up to 35 knots (65 kilometers per hour). Select the North Whitehaven option for an eco-adventure popular amongst avid snorkellers. This includes two different snorkel destinations, a visit to the stunning beach at Hill Inlet, and a guided National Park walk to the lookout above the silica sand of Whitehaven. Select the South Whitehaven option for more beach time. Enjoy at least two hours relaxing on the white silica sand, and a guided walk to Hill Inlet for breathtaking views of the tropical waters. Snorkel for over an hour amid corals and fringing reefs. Either way, enjoy the only tour in the Whitsundays to have direct access to Hill Inlet beaches at Whitehaven. And have peace of mind by traveling with an advanced ecotourism-certified, climate change business and green travel leader.

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Whitsundays: Ocean Rafting Tour with Snorkel & Scenic Flight

6. Whitsundays: Ocean Rafting Tour with Snorkel & Scenic Flight

Experience the best of the Whitsunday Islands and Great Barrier Reef in one day: from the water and the air. Visit the Whitsundays’ most iconic destinations. These include the famous Heart Reef, Whitehaven Beach, Hill Inlet, and secret, exclusive snorkeling locations. Ride, beach, snorkel, and bush walk, all in one day. Visit both ends of the world-famous beach. Departing from Airlie Beach, take to the skies and experience a once-in-a-lifetime, 60-minute scenic flight. Soar over the islands and Great Barrier Reef, including famous Heart Reef and Whitehaven Beach. Guests will have a bird’s eye view of many of the 74 Whitsunday Islands, flying over Whitehaven Beach and picture postcard Hill Inlet before heading out to the Great Barrier Reef and experiencing one of the most photographed reef locations, Heart Reef. The comfortable fixed-wing aircraft offers big window viewing, pilot commentary, and the best views of the Whitsundays. Then, take off on the ride of your life in the beautiful Whitsunday Islands. Departing from Airlie Beach, climb aboard the fastest day boat in the Whitsundays. This means it is not only an adventurous ride, but distances are covered in a shorter time, leaving more time for activities. The semi-rigid inflatable vessels are super fast allowing guests to experience a fun ride, adventure and education amongst the natural beauty of the Whitsundays. At the northern end of Whitehaven Beach, enjoy a guided bushwalk to spectacular Hill Inlet Lookout to view and capture photographs of the stunning swirling silica sands and aqua water. This operator is the only tour to have direct access to all areas of the stunning and iconic Hill Inlet beach to ensure you enjoy the most memorable experience of this special place. If you have selected the 'North Whitehaven' option: This eco-adventure is a favourite amongst avid snorkellers because it is the only Whitsunday adventure which includes two different snorkel destinations. Not only that, but it includes a visit to the stunning beach at Hill Inlet, north end of Whitehaven Beach, and a guided National Park walk to the lookout above the silica sand of Whitehaven. Guests explore the restricted area of beautiful Hill Inlet at Whitehaven Beach.  If you have selected the South Whitehaven Option: This tour visits both the northern and southern ends of Whitehaven Beach with more beach time. Enjoy at least two hours relaxing on the world famous white silica sand, a guided walk to Hill Inlet Lookout and experience the Southern Whitehaven Lookout, enjoying breathtaking views of Pentecost Island and the tropical waters of the Whitsundays. Snorkel for over an hour at Border Island, Dumbell Island or one of the “secret” snorkel spots, enjoying the amazing hard and soft corals of the fringing reefs.

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From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Cruise by Premium Catamaran

7. From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Cruise by Premium Catamaran

Hope aboard a catamaran for a day trip to remember to the Great Barrier Reef. Snorkel, dive, or swim in the water, enjoy a delicious buffet lunch, and take in the marine wildlife. Meet your crew at the Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal, pay the reef levy, and hop aboard the luxury catamaran. The crew will select reef locations depending on the day's conditions from Flynn and Milne reef or further north at Norman and Hastings reefs. All offer diverse reef structures teeming with exotic marine life. Feel the wind in your hair as you set sail for the outer Great Barrier Reef. Relax with morning tea on the way, get to know the crew and learn all about the marine eco-system from a marine expert. Review snorkeling techniques with the crew during the journey. Arrive at the first outer reef location, where you can snorkel, dive or swim in the water. You may also choose to sunbathe, or chill on the boat on the upper sun deck or the netted deck trampoline at the bow of the boat. You can avail complimentary guided tours from the staff. A dedicated dive tender is available for experienced certified divers who want to explore deeper waters. All certified divers receive a complimentary dive guide. First-time divers will receive a free 10-minute scuba instruction in the water from qualified PADI professionals. Savor a fresh tropical buffet lunch prepared by the onboard chef. Treat yourself to a selection of hot and cold dishes including buffet meats, salads, and tropical fruit. Travel to the second outer reef location for the day for your choice of activity. Look out for corals, exotic marine life such as parrotfish, reef turtles and 'nemo' fish. End the day as the captain hoists the sails, and cruise back to Cairns. Enjoy a cold drink from the bar (own expense) and relax on the boom netting. Alternatively, watch presentations about the marine life from the passionate eco-certified staff.

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Airlie Beach: Outer Great Barrier Reef ReefWorld Pontoon

8. Airlie Beach: Outer Great Barrier Reef ReefWorld Pontoon

Departing from Airlie Beach, cruise through the Whitsundays on a high-speed, luxury vessel. Enjoy morning tea as you pass by deserted islands, secluded bays and beaches en route to the outer Great Barrier Reef. The vessel features spacious lounges, full air-conditioning, huge outside view decks and a duo of bars that will gladly serve you your favourite refreshment, including both alcohol and soft drinks. Arrive at the permanently-moored, spacious and innovative pontoon on the outer Great Barrier Reef. The water quality and diverse marine life is unrivalled. Meet hundreds of fish species and admire a variety of hard and soft coral. This makes for unbelievable snorkelling and diving if you wish (at an extra cost on the day). Spend the time as you please: make use of the undercover seating and tables, sun decks to top up your tan, freshwater showers and changing rooms. Visit the underwater chamber if you prefer to see the underwater world below without getting wet. Take a ride on a semi-submersible boat. Optional extras also include scuba dives and scenic helicopter flights. Indulge in a delicious tropical-style buffet lunch and drinks from the bar as you please (extra cost). The return journey back to Airlie is a beautiful end to the day.

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Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Pontoon with Activities

9. Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Pontoon with Activities

Sit back and relax on a catamaran cruise from Cairns to the Great Barrier Reef, where you enjoy a raft of water activities from Moore Reef's pontoon. Encounter an outstanding landscape of marine life, enjoy a choice of activities including snorkeling, including a visit to the underwater observatory. Prior to departure from the marina, sip on some complimentary tea and coffee. Depart from Cairns’ Marlin Marina at 9:30 AM and enjoy a cruise out of the harbor. Witness the stunning landscape before the catamaran makes its way out to open seas. Sail in air-conditioned comfort onboard the catamaran to the state-of-the-art activity pontoon at Moore Reef. Moore Reef is a prime location on the Outer Great Barrier Reef, abundant with soft corals and marine life. Learn about the reef and its diverse ecosystems on the outward journey with presentations given by resident marine experts. Upon arrival at the pontoon at 11:30 AM, choose from an array of activities suitable for both swimmers and non-swimmers alike. Make use of the inclusive snorkeling equipment, with wetsuits and lycra also available at an additional charge. Alternatively, watch the daily fish feeding presentations, or take a trip on the glass bottom boat or semi-submersible tour with marine experts providing commentary. Soak up the rays on a spacious sun deck, or make a splash on a theme park-style waterslide. See the reef without getting wet in the underwater observatory, and get up close and personal with marine creatures like sea cucumbers and starfish.

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From Cairns: Luxury Great Barrier Reef Snorkel & Dive

10. From Cairns: Luxury Great Barrier Reef Snorkel & Dive

Depart in the morning for your once in a lifetime adventure to the spectacular Outer Great Barrier Reef aboard this modern, luxury vessel. The friendly crew will ensure you get the most out of your day on the reef, whether you’re a snorkeler, trying SCUBA diving for the first time, or you are an experienced diver.  Purpose built, the vessel boasts 3 large sun decks, 2 air-conditioned indoor saloons, a spacious dive deck, and a sunken platform for easy access in and out of the water. This new vessel has everything you need to experience the Great Barrier Reef in unrivaled comfort, and numbers are capped at 80 to ensure everybody has a great day.  You will have the opportunity to snorkel or dive at 2 exclusive reef locations across your day, allowing you to see an abundance of marine life that calls the Great Barrier Reef home. The reef sites are chosen on the day by the experienced skipper, depending on weather and sea conditions to ensure the best in-water experience.  If this is your first time snorkeling, don’t worry — it’s fun and safe for the whole family. You can see the best of the Great Barrier Reef just floating on the surface, including colorful coral, many fish species, and other wildlife. Free guided snorkeling tours are available, meaning you won’t miss a thing. These free tours are great for those who aren’t as comfortable in the water. All of the snorkeling equipment required is supplied as part of your trip, including a wetsuit or stinger suit.  If you would like to try diving but don’t have a diving licence, then why not try an introductory dive? You can see the underwater world in the care of an experienced instructor. If you are already certified, you can go guided or non-guided during your time on the reef — it's up to you.  You will enjoy a light morning tea, afternoon tea of fruits, cheese and crackers, and a delicious pre-packed picnic lunch. Complimentary tea, coffee, and chilled water are served throughout the day (snacks, soft and alcoholic beverages are also available for purchase). Whether you are a snorkeler, first-time SCUBA diver, or already certified diver, you will love this once in a lifetime adventure aboard a luxury day trip to the great barrier reef.

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What people are saying about Far North Queensland

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 21 reviews

Fabulous day. Very organised, all the staff were super friendly. Great food and plenty of it. Plenty of time on the reef . We had a magical day. We saw several turtles and a reef shark too! Thank you to ocean freedom. So glad we chose your boat .

Amazing trip, in the deep sea you will the amazing world. Crew are very friendly, caring and safe. I recommend highly about the trip

Great travel time to/from the Island & snorkelling straight off the beach is perfect for families with young kids

We had a great time. The places we went were stunning and the boat and the crew where very friendly and fun.

It was an amazing day and the tour guides were lovely!