Great Barrier Reef Tour Cairns,  the Best way to see the Reef

Join us on board our high speed Catamaran “Reef Experience” for an unforgettable day visiting 2 pristine Outer Great Barrier Reef tour locations and discover the breath-taking wonder of this World Heritage environment.

Reef Experience is Cairn’s only ALL inclusive Great Barrier Reef tour which also offers a FREE Scuba Dive and Glass-bottom boat tour.

Catering for all levels in Swimming, Snorkeling and and Scuba Diving, everyone will find the perfect way to experience the Great Barrier Reef.

Experienced Swimmer or Snorkeler? Our crew will show you to the best patches of coral and can tell you where to find the marine marvels that call the reef their home.

Never Snorkelled before or can’t Swim? Our friendly and professional Crew are always ready to jump in and assist everybody who needs help to ensure that you are comfortable with your equipment and introduce you to some of our friendly fish!   We are passionate about our guests having fun and experiencing the magic of our Great Barrier Reef Tour. 

A day on the Great Barrier Reef Tour will be one of the most memorable days in your life.




  • Up to 6 hours at two pristine Outer Great Barrier Reef Tour locations
  • Unlimited Snorkeling at morning and afternoon locations. All equipment INCLUDING wetsuit hire
  • FREE Scuba Dive (Certified Dive qualified OR Resort Dive no-experience necessary at the first reef location for everyone over age 12 and medically fit to scuba) Medical Conditions apply
  • FREE Glass Bottom Boat Tour (weather permitting)
  • FREE Pick up and Return to Cairns City Accommodation
  • FREE Marine Biology Presentation
  • Breakfast consisting of barbecue bacon & egg rolls, coffee, tea and fruit platters
  • Delicious Buffet BBQ lunch with an assortment of fresh salads
  • Cheese, fruit platter & complimentary wine on return journey
  • All dietary requirements catered for. (Vegetarian/gluten free etc: please advise upon booking).
  • All food is locally sourced where possible and prepared fresh by on-board Chef
  • FREE Crew assistance for non-confident snorkelers (flotation aids available). Friendly and professional crew are ready to jump with everyone who require assistance to have fun and experience the magic of the reef!
  • Large Sun Deck with padded loungers and air conditioned indoor areas
  • Reef tax, fuel levy & national park fees. Unlike other operators, mandatory levies for visiting the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park are included in this trip cost so there won’t be extra charges on the day
  • No hidden costs


  • 07:30 – Board Reef Experience boat at the Cairns Marina ‘A-Finger’ for check-in
  • 08:00 – Approximate departure & Safety Talk with snorkel briefing
  • 08:30 – Marine Biology presentation, followed by detailed scuba dive briefing for those participating
  • 09:30 – Arrive at our first spectacular reef site, snorkel & dive with thousands of vivid tropical fish, giant clams plus more
  • 10:30 – Glass Bottom Boat Tour (approximately 20 minute tour)
  • 12:30 – Lunch
  • 13:00 – Cruise to our second location to explore forests of coral, large sea fans & black coral trees in it’s shallow lagoons
  • 15:00 – Depart the Great Barrier Reef
  • 15:30 – Glass of wine, tropical fruits, cheese & biscuits
  • 16:30 – Arrive back in Cairns

Optional Extras

  • Underwater Digital Camera Hire
  • Snack Bar Purchases: Soft drinks, chocolate, chips, alcohol etc.
  • Marine Biologist Guided Snorkel Tour of the reef: Snorkel with an experienced Marine Biologist and learn about the marine life you see on an educational and interactive tour
  • Great Barrier Reef souvenirs – T-shirts, hats etc
  • Dive Guides for already qualified ‘Certified’ scuba divers (dive guides included for beginner divers)
  • Prescription Mask Hire if you require stronger lenses to see (contact lenses can be worn in most circumstances)
  • Bus transfers from accommodation outside of the Cairns Business Area
  • Second Scuba Dive at our beautiful afternoon reef location

What to bring

  • Cash and/or credit card for purchases
  • Swimming Clothes, Towel, Hat, Sunglasses, Sun Cream
  • Proof of qualification if you’re a Certified Diver

How to get there

Reef Experience departs from
Cairns Marina: ‘A-Finger’ View map to Cairns Marlin Marina

Boarding commences at 7:30 am for check-in, directly on the vessel ‘Reef Experience’

Arrive back to Cairns Marina at approximately 4:30pm

Where Can I Park?

There are a number of parking stations throughout Cairns that are in walking distance of the Marina.  Click here to see where

Important Information

Important Information for Scuba Diving

We have a passion to show you Australia’s Great Barrier Reef so please make sure you understand the scuba diving laws.

Queensland, Australia has some of the strictest scuba diving rules in the world  but also the safest scuba diving record.   We are regulated by the Queensland Government Code of Practice and comply with all rules including medical as is the law.

To avoid disappointment on your day of travel we strongly recommend that all of our passengers complete our dive medical questionnaire prior to booking as some medical conditions, age and / or medications may prevent you from scuba diving.   It is always our mission to provide our passengers with the very best Great Barrier Reef experience.

Reef Experience Medical Questionnaire

We are very happy to help you with any questions you may have.   Please Contact our office on 07 4037 2700 or email us

Or alternatively, you may like to consult your own Doctor for a Dive Medical using the Australian Standard Forms ‘AS.4005.1

Flying after Scuba Diving

For a single no decompression scuba dive, you should not fly or go to altitude for at least 18 hours after a scuba dive.  For multiple dives you should not fly for 24 hours after your last dive.
If Skydiving or Hot Air Ballooning you must wait 24 hours after your dive.
We recommend waiting a minimum 24 hours whenever possible


Read policies
TripAdvisor Traveller Rating
Based on 2733 traveller reviews
TripAdvisor Ranking #2 of 69 Boat Tours & Water Sports in Cairns
Most Recent Traveller Reviews
  • 12 October 2017: Excellent day
  • 11 October 2017: Awesome day
  • 10 October 2017: Reef experience
  • 10 October 2017: It was a Blast! Loved it!
  • 6 October 2017: Great day out on the reef
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Add your review for Great Barrier Reef Tour, Reef Experience


22 Reviews for “Great Barrier Reef Tour, Reef Experience”

  1. Fleycheryl

    Staff were very attentive to the need for medication given the ride out to the reef was predicted to be rough. I took advice to take meds the night before and in the morning and was blissfully able to enjoy. Those who were ill were so well looked after that they were able to recover and enjoy the dives. The lunch was great - and nice to have us vegetarians catered for - they kept it separate so food wasn't stolen by those hungry meat eaters. I was very appreciated by all of this. Best reef experience ever!!

  2. Kelly Harris

    Best reef cruise in Cairns!!! Lovely staff, great food, and no hidden costs. I wasn't sure about a scuba dive but after all the information given by the staff they got me so excited. As it is all inclusive I was able to give it a shot and I loved it!!

  3. Lucy Davies

    I chose Reef Experience because of value – one all inclusive price whilst the other companies visiting the Great Barrier Reef start with a trip price and then add reef levies, bus transfers, diving, wetsuit, glass bottom boat etc and people end up paying a lot more for less. Reef Experience exceeded all my expectations! Everything is provided – even the sunscreen. Reef Experience’s crews’ passion for the reef is by far their best asset. My partner can’t swim well and the crew got in the water and assisted him see the Great Barrier Reef. The marine biologist was knowledgeable and my highlight was giving scuba diving a try! I would recommend this tour! Lucy, England.

  4. Mariah Goecker

    "Friendly crew. Snorkelling the reef! I was the last one out of the water. This is one of the best experiences of my life"

  5. Milly Keid

    "Really friendly crew, always helpful and informative. The snorkelling and glass bottom boat tour were the best part of the day. Thank you for an enjoyable trip"

  6. Joshua

    "Crew were very pleasant! professional. Scuba diving was the best thing. Thank you so much for such a wonderful experience"

  7. Haley

    "very helpful, friendly, knowledgeable and professional crew. I was able to Scuba dive for the first time"

  8. Kelly

    "fantastic crew! everyone was calm and low key reassuring and encouraging. They made everything great. I snorkelled in the reef being surrounded by fish. I only see in aquariums".

  9. Patrick

    "Awesome and great, Fan Dabby Dosy. Learning to dive for the first time was the best part of the day"

  10. Jolanta

    "Amazing crew especially Kera for helping me so much in the water. Snorkelling was awesome"

  11. Andreas

    "Crew were excellent, best people, helpful, excellent job, what else?? :) Dive for first time and snorkelling. It's so fantastic! So CONTINUE best crew :D "

  12. Sheridan

    The crew were Amazing! So friendly. Had a blast! Scuba diving was the best part of my day. Loved this experience! Thank you!"

  13. Marlaina W

    This tour provided snorkeling, diving, food, transportation and it was reasonably priced! The crew were fantastic! They explained every aspect of the day very clearly and made us feel very welcomed. Our favorite part of the day was Scuba diving. I had never done it before and our instructor was a dream! and we were able to see several awesome animals during the dive. Thank you guys for a truly memorable day!

  14. Lorena B

    The crew was very nice and helpful at all times. It was my firs time doing diving and the crew made it a great experience. Seeing a big turtle while snorkeling was awesome, but also diving and being so close to the Reef. Everything was perfect I would recommend this tour to anyone.

  15. Anudeepthi (NZ)

    Crew were the best and most amazing people. This is the best experience I have ever had and I would definitely recommend it to my friends and family.

  16. Laura

    Very friendly and helpful, as I am not a confident swimmer especially Brittany who helped me while I was snorkelling. The best part was seeing the Great Barrier Reef and being able to tick it off my bucket list. I would recommend and would love to do experience again

  17. Caileen M

    The crew were friendly, professional and really knew a lot! Very approachable. My favorite part of the trip was an introductory dive . The crew were so reassuring and patient. The food was yum!! The photographer was fab. Loved it all. Travel highlight. Found Nemo #Winning

  18. Kral F

    The crew were so friendly they know what to do to make us feel safe. I think that the snorkeling was the best a lot of different wildlife and lot of colors. It was like visiting another planet. It was different from anywhere else I have ever been. I always wanted to come here. Thank you for this experience.

  19. Katie

    Reef Experience looked awesome! The crew is amazing! Scuba diving was the best part of the day! Best tour I've been on! Thank you!

  20. Mark

    Booked with Reef Experience - good reviews and introductory dive and most important the Marine Biologist on board inclusions! The crew is fantastic and knowledgeable. The best part of the day was getting engaged and diving. Literally the best day of my life!

  21. Hannah

    I loved snorkeling with family. Staff were very kind and attentive to everyone's wants and needs. Very characteristic, enthusiastic, smiley and kind. Down to earth people not so formal making it an enjoyable experience. 10/10!

  22. Hannah

    AMAZING! Everyone was super nice and helpful. Diving and lunch were the best. I had an amazing day and I'll remember this as long as I live. Thanks a lot xx

  23. Taylor

    I booked Reef Experience because I wanted to go diving! Duh! The crew were absolutely wonderful. Incredibly friendly and very supportive through everything. The best part - can I say the whole day? I had a magnificent time on this boat. The staff were incredible and my experience would have been completely different without them. Thank you! <3


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