Bay Area Scuba Lovers Message Board Travel › Port Douglas/Cairns diving suggestions needed

Port Douglas/Cairns diving suggestions needed

Maria
user 9545467
San Jose, CA
Post #: 9
Hi,

I'm planning to go to Australia either in late April or early May. I was thinking to do day dives from Port Douglas. Has anyone been there before? Any suggestions and recommendations would be great!

Thanks
Maria
mr. B.
user 59341212
Santa Clara, CA
Post #: 2
My only recommendation Maria is to spend a bit more $$ on the smaller dive boats. The large cattle boats are cheaper, but that wasn't a great dive experience. Also, the Australians tend to be much stricter with their rules. I couldn't even barrow some weights to go free diving?

good luck,
-mr.bill
Liz M.
user 15972511
San Francisco, CA
Post #: 2
Hi Maria,
I'm from Australia but from down south and I'm still to get to the Barrier Reef. [BTW the diving in Port Philip Bay and other parts of Southeast Australia is excellent, probably similar to here at least where water temp is concerned but I imagine you're looking for some tropical dives.] While I haven't dived the GBR, being from Australia it often comes up in dive conversations and I've heard different things over the years that I think I pay more attention to because it is close to home. One thing I've heard is that it's worth your while, and the extra money, to take a 3/4 day liveaboard out into the Coral Sea. I've heard some bad stories about the cattle truck boats and when I was considering a trip there it seemed to me that if I went on one of the big boats it would be up to me to find a dive buddy and a dive guide would be extra (most people go for the snorkelling). I'd had that view confirmed on a few occasions. I've been diving in a few places on my own: Thailand, Mexico, Bahamas, South Africa and Puerto Rico, and all the operators I've used have had guides for all the dives and I've always found a buddy easily. Apart from safety considerations a guide knows the sites and you don't have to worry about navigating an unknown site. If you were able to fit in a side trip to Papua New Guinea I've heard the diving there is incredible and unspoiled. I hope you have a wonderful trip!
Liz
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