Great Barrier Reef – Day 8


Today was our SeaStar Cruise out to Michaelmas Island/Reef and Hasting Reef. The cruise had about 30 passengers, which was nice and intimate and felt less commercialized than other tourist attractions. We left the wharf at 8:15am and it was about 90 mintues out to out first stop, Michaelmas Island/Reef. I don’t usually get seasick, but it was really choppy and I must admit I did start to feel a little ill. Strangely, on the way back the water was 5x as rough, but I was fine so I guess its just a case of acclimatising. The catamaran anchored about 80 metres off shore from the island and we had the option either to swim in or get taken in by dinghy. The island was completely over run by birds and their noise was headache material so we didn’t spend long there and headed out into the water. From the island they ran a snorkling tour which took us around the reef and pointed out interesting fish and coral. After the tour we were able to snorkel and explore on our own for a bit.

Once everyone was done on the reef (after about 2.5 hours of exploring) they served up a buffet lunch inside the boat. Because it was rough they waited until after lunch to start driving towards Hastings Reef. Hastings Reef was a lot better than the first stop, not that Michaelmas was bad or anything. Hastings was a lot bigger, it featured 10metre high walls of coral and deep caves. At this stop we boarded a glass bottomed boat and did a quick tour around the reef. It was good, but the boat scares away a lot of the fish. On our snorkeling tour we saw a sea turtle and got to swim along with it for a bit. Emmy and I were the only ones to hold onto a pineapple sea cucumber. It is a big sea slug type thing that suctions onto you.

About the Author: Andrew Ferguson

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