Dive Advice Travel
dive liveaboard specialists .... the world's finest diving
You've got the warm and colorful waters of the Great Barrier Reef and the energizing cold waters off the south coast of Australia. There in the south, you may be lucky enough to dive with the acclaimed shark expert Rodney Fox, who arranges 3-5 night Great White Shark trips aboard his 23 meter vessel Princess II.
The easiest access to good diving is in the North of Queensland around Cairns and Cooktown and the best boats there dive roughly the same area and reefs with 3 night, 4 night, 6 and 7 night itineraries - and they take you to the hopping spots with great reef life and plenty of sharks - the Ribbon Reefs, Cod Hole and Osprey Reef in the Coral Sea.
While there are lots of operators & boats, I stick with my two favorites, knowing their dependability and expertise for these challenging trips. I've worked with these guys for years and know that they never disappoint so we'll help you to choose between the sturdy & comfortable Mike Ball's Spoilsport and the graceful & lovely Spirit of Freedom.
Please note that in the October/ November period there are some far northern trips up to the Raine Island area that I think are about as spectacular as diving trips get. Keep an eye on our Special Expeditions page for dates, rates and available spaces!
When you're ready to know more, please don't hesitate to contact me for further information. Cheers, Dom
SCUBA DIVING HIGHLIGHTS
MASSIVE CORALS: table corals, brain corals, staghorn corals, cauliflower corals ... along with GORGONIANS, feather stars, anemones & SPONGES. Then you have sharks, sharks, sharks & MORE SHARKS (roughly 180 shark species) plus 45 species of WHALES, DOLPHINS & PORPOISES. Add in colorful REEF FISH galore, PELAGIC FISH a-plenty, turtles,eels, a variety of RAYS and some fine critters, including those "alien" SEA DRAGONS. The icing on the cake is cage-diving with GREAT WHITES.
Australian diving offers everything from the tame to the treacherous. This myriad of scuba diving experiences also ranges from day-boat diving, where you get crowds of divers and a plethora of boats in limited spaces .... to the stunning remote stretches of outer reef and islands, accessible only by liveaboard, where you find peace, tranquility, healthy corals, "zillions" of fish and an unbelievable number of shark species.
Our recommendation for diving Australia will always be a liveaboard trip, which will take you to find, in addition to vibrant reefs with a variety of coral fish and intriguing creatures, plenty of sharks and everybody's favorite Australian marine creature, the massive Potato Cod.
Further afield, you can find exotic scuba diving in the Coral Sea which is dotted underwater with extinct volcanoes, vast walls, glorious corals and lively pelagic action. And, everywhere you look you find turtles - several different species of them - plus dolphins, whales and sharks. Sharks, sharks, sharks are around every corner.
Do you know that southern Australia offers the adrenaline rush of diving with the Great Whites? And what about diving the incredible giant kelp forests off the shores of Tasmania where you find not only humongous kelp but also those intriguing leafy sea dragons? Are you aware that Australia offers some fine wreck diving and some wonderful cave dives? Have you ever seen a thresher shark? a zebra shark? a bronze whaler? a pygmy shark? a sawfish shark?
All of those and so many more are possible sightings in Australian waters. Our favorite liveaboards offer special trips to dive with Australia's unique species ....
You can dive from one of many land-based options or day boats ... but serious scuba divers who wish to experience the most remote areas and to access the best of the diving in Australia, will want to be on a dive liveaboard. We have chosen the liveaboard vessels we have full confidence in. They run reliable, safety-conscious, professional diving adventures which we recommend without hesitation.
Steve's Bommie is known for its swarming schools of big fish and macro life. Barracudas, white tip reef sharks are standard fare and sometimes you're lucky enough to spot minke whales here. The Temple of Doom is bommie famous for its reef like and equally for its pelagic action. You won't know where to look!
The reef is separated from the continental shelf by a deep water trough and is regarded as one of the premier Australian liveaboard destinations. Known for great visibility, Osprey Reef offers lots of big fish action.
You'll encounter turtles, rays and a large variety of whales & sharks (including hammerheads & even the occasional whale shark), dolphins, sailfish and marlin – plus the ever present tuna and barracuda.
Divers can also expect a lot of shark action with silvertip, grey reef and white tip reef sharks commonly coming in close. The region abounds with masses of pelagic and reef fish and an incredible variety of colorful corals and invertebrates.
Check our Unique Adventures section for yearly scheduled trips to the Far North.
Maori & Napoleon wrasse, barramundi, purfferfish, sweetlips, coral trout, turtles and loads of sea snakes. From June to November, you might be lucky enough to spot minke or humpback and whale sharks often pass by between October and January.
The water and currents can be rough around the wreck and dives can be subject to cancellation so do plan to spend enough time here to have more than one shot at this memorable experience.
You can choose from 2, 3 or 4 night itineraries on the Princess II or arrange a custom itinerary of 5 to 8 nights (generally an option for groups). Diving on 2 night trips is surface cage diving only but all other trips include, for certified scuba divers, an opportunity to experience the only ocean-floor cage in the world.
The diving is done in the Neptune Islands, the remote, rugged & rocky islands which are home to Australia's largest colony of Fur Seals and known for their White-Breasted Sea Eagles, Ospreys, Rock Parrots, the fabled Albatross.
Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions is the only operator with permission to dive at these islands which only adds to the immense sense of adventure.
Surface Cage: The cage holds up to 4 people at one time and anyone above the age of 8 is welcome to enjoy the proximity of the ocean creatures which approach with curiosity or merely swim past, oblivious to the land creatures who are briefly in their world.
Ocean Floor Cage: We can't possibly describe the ocean floor cage experience better than it's explained by Rodney and his son, Andrew. "Up to three guests and a Dive Professional descend approximately 20 metres (66ft) into world that will captivate and spell-bind – a blue aquarium of rocky outcrops teeming with reef fish, white sand and swaying sea-grasses, laconic Giant Blue Groupers, elegant stingrays and a watchful assortment of sharks. And, of course, the Great White that appears out of the blue and sweeps gracefully towards, over and around the cage. It is amazing!"
After diving here, it's easy to add on a trip to the kelp forests off Tasmania where you can dive with (and photograph) the world's MOST exotic creatures, the leafy seadragon! Ask us about this unforgettable add-on!
Australia is widely known for its Great Barrier Reef – the world's largest coral reef system - which covers roughly 2,000 kilometers (1200 miles). 3000 individual reef systems & coral cays, plus hundreds of picturesque tropical islands, make up this remarkable continental barrier. The reef is larger than the Great Wall of China & is the only living thing on earth visible from space. Australia closest neighbors include Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, East Timor, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Zealand.