A short but sweet visit to Green Island (Great Barrier Reef)

So today we have been blessed with some fantastic weather all day long. It turns out our decision to do a short half-day trip to Green Island was a good one as the conditions were perfect to see the reef and fish living around it. We made our way to the boat terminal, (you can see how close it is to our hotel below), departed at 11am and arrived 45 minutes later.


The weather is scorching.  No clouds were around to give shade so we hid in a cafe until it was time to board. What I remember from my last trip out was that being at sea from 9-5 is a long time in the unforgiving far north Queensland sunshine, so a slightly shorter trip wasn’t really an issue. The shorter journey to Green Island meant we didn’t really spend too much time at sea getting to and from the reef.

The Reef Rocket


Cairns looking great from here! As the city disappeared onto the horizon, our little island emerged. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it did seem very small! Not that I was complaining, my last reef trip consisted of no land whatsover, so having somewhere that I was able to walk around on without bobbing up and down like a cork was welcomed.


That colour though!


Immediately upon looking down we saw some impressive sized schools of fish of all kinds. That and a small reef shark minding it’s own business amongst the snorkelers. Humans and animals seem to get along pretty well here. Now because this was a short trip we only spent an hour on the island to have lunch and walking through it actually makes it seem bigger than I originally assumed. I didn’t take any photos (why the hell didn’t I?!) but there is a walkway that takes you from one side of the island to the other and in the middle is a resort with a couple of restaurants, bars and a pool for guests of Green Island. We had lunch fairly hurried as we didn’t want to miss the glass bottom boat ride and headed back out to the boats.

Oh I needed to save my terrible iPhone battery. That is why.

The boat was a different one to the one we got here, it was a long boat and people sit facing each other with the glass running down the length of the boat. Due to the shallow reef the views were clear and fish aplenty.


How cool is that? We also saw a turtle which was perfect timing as a man asked the driver if there was the possibility. His response was ‘Yes! Right there!’.

He surfaced a couple of times away from the boat before submerging and swimming off for good.

Now this was the perfect little day as we were actually going to do a popular train ride and realised we had missed the train! So with the weather being perfect and not wanting it to go to waste we looked at short trips out to the reef and the few hours at sea actually felt a lot longer. But in a good way, 11-4pm means there was no time for sea sickness and we have enough energy to do something tonight. Tomorrow we will do the Kuranda Train ride in hopefully decent weather. But I don’t mind too much because if I wanted any day to be great, it was a day at the reef.


More info on the Big Cat Green Island Reef Cruises on their website here.



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37 thoughts on “A short but sweet visit to Green Island (Great Barrier Reef)”

    1. It is certainly hard to make the photos do it justice, but it is also hard to take a bad photo from here! You do have to visit it yourself to truly see its beauty though, the colours are amazing!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Haha, if you’re ever doing Australia like I am, because everyone is either going up or down the east coast it is easy to know where to head next. Travelling Oz is easy like that!

        Also, my Travel Diary section will always be there too :p

        Liked by 1 person

    1. We really did, if you prefer to not go too far out or have the option of dry land during your reef visit, this is a great place to head. Only 45 mins off the coast and you can either have lunch on the boat or in the few restaurants on the island. Very pleasant!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for the tip. Too many of the trips seem to feature snorkling or diving and I’m so not putting so much as a toe in the sea in Australia.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Haha, the more time I spend here the less time I want in the water! I am glad I have though. But yes, the glass bottom boat was great and if you don’t want to go for a swim, this is a great alternative.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh wow, this looks great! How brilliant to see a turtle as well 🙂 It’s one thing I haven’t managed to do yet, despite having visited that neck of the woods. We were very unlucky with the weather when we were there and couldn’t go out. It’s on the list though, i hope I can visit again one day!!

    Liked by 1 person

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