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“Not satisfied” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Reef Experience Day Tours

Reef Experience Day Tours
100 Abbott St, Cairns, Queensland 4870, Australia
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Ranked #26 of 133 Activities in Cairns
Type: Tours, Adventure
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Attraction details
Owner description: One Great Day at One Great price includes : city bus transfers, 2 spectacular Outer Barrier Reef locations, breakfast, wetsuit hire, 6 hours at the Reef, Marine Biologist Reef presentation, lunch, glass bottom boat, reef levies, afternoon tea your choice of an introductory dive or a certified dive. For people who can’t swim or aren’t confident in the water our friendly crew will take them on a guided snorkelProudly locally family owned and operated.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Not satisfied”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2014

We took the cruise about a day before Cyclone Ita was due to pass through Cairns. While most other cruises had cancelled their trips for the day due to bad weather, Reef Experience were still operating. Since we only had a limited number of days in Cairns, we thought it would be a good idea to go with these guys as we wouldn't have been able to see the reef another day! There are some cons about Reef Experience- free scuba dive should you choose to do one; brief presentation by a 'marine biologist', which was nice; friendly staff.

However, unfortunately I don't know that I'd recommend this cruise. I know that the weather was bad which is beyond anyone's control, but by the end of the trip I felt we were ripped off. The tour is meant to include a visit to two different sites as well as a glass bottom tour. We were only taken to one spot due to the water being too rough. That would be fine except that the water was so rough that it was really hard to snorkel. We were also very limited to how far out we could snorkel and visibility was very poor. Although they claimed we were going to the best reef of all (Norman reef), after seeing the reef, I can say for sure that this reef is not the most beautiful. It would have been good if they could have offered us a discounted rate for the cruise for going out to only one spot and not operating the glass bottom boat. Or that they should have not operated the cruise at all on the day knowing the weather was not going to cooperate!

As mentioned earlier, staff are friendly, but also not the most professional. I watched as a handful of the crew mooned at another boat as it passed by (assuming it must have been a rival company?). It was very inappropriate considering there were quite a few passengers right in front of them watching them bare their bottoms!

Maybe our experience with them would have been better on a different day, but I would be trying a different company on my next visit to the reef.

Visited April 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Amazing Reef Day Trip!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2014

Had a FANTASTIC day with Reef Experience in Early April.
We were only staying a short walk away from the Marina and were still offered the free transfers to and from the boat. On time and comfortable in both directions!

From the moment we got on the boat the staff were super friendly and approachable! Great safety introduction to the boat and the reef, marine biologist talk and a yummy breakfast on the way out!
Reef experience offer a free scuba dive, even if you've never been before- other companies we looked at using were charging up to and over $100 for one dive!! I was the only certified diver on board the boat, so it was even more special for me- I got a private dive! Ryan was my dive leader, he was very friendly and professional! Under water he had very keen eyes for pointing our interesting critters!

An amazing lunch was put on by the crew, followed by an afternoon of snorkelling at another nearby reef.

I have done reef day trips before, usually visiting one of the stationary pontoons and will never ever do this again now I have discovered Reef Experience!!
We got so much time on the reef itself, the trip was practically all inclusive and the crew were amazing- made my holiday!

Can't wait to visit again!!!

Visited April 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake Jackson, Texas
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Absolutely first class”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2014

This was truly a class act from start to finish. We snorkeled on April 4, 2014. The two reefs we snorkeled were the best we've seen - EVER. There was more variety of fish and coral than we've seen anywhere else (including the Palancar reef off Cozumel and the reef off Roatan both of which were wonderful experiences...the GBR was better). Our vessel was a thing of beauty. And the staff (around a dozen or so) bent over backwards to ensure that you had a wonderful experience. The food (breakfast and lunch) was delicious and plentiful. The wine and cheese served late in the afternoon after our two magnificent snorkeling experiences was the perfect ending to a perfect trip. I highly recommend.

Visited April 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“australian GBR 1 night 2 days tour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2014

we wanted to visit the reef from cairns but were not sure whether to go for the typical one day or an overnight tour, which of course is more expensive. In case you do not know, the coral reefs, the ones that are worthwhile, are some 25 miles out. The vessels takes near 2 hrs to get there and 2 hrs back in not always calms waters. This may be ok for some but we decided for the i night 2 days with reef encounter and we are very glad we did.
The overnight ship takes a max of 42 passangers and the cabins are large and confortable. The food excellent and the cook Hanna, excelent with appropiate and creatives meals.
But this is only the icing on the cake. We were there for the reefs and i can say that the snorkling and diving was superb, even though the sea was not at it best with relatively high winds, they managed to take us to good places. Laura, the chief diving instructor excellent and very profesional. the crew most accomodating and the catamaran very comfortable.
I could not dive since i had a cold but snorkled about 4 times each day and my wife did get to dive. They also offer night diving at reasonable Prices.
The australian GBR does not have an easy Access as you may find in places such as san pedro, belize, etc but is certainly worthwhile. Just make sure you pick the right time to go. We went in early april and were lucky since the rainy season is at its tail end. There is a cyclone going thru now around that región, Guess what i am trying to say is that is difficult to plan ahead. We went to cairns for 5 days and decided there once we saw what the weather was going to be like for the next few days,
other relevant comments.
Green island tour- not worth it.there is not much to see.
we rented a car for one day and drove up to cape tribulation. easy done in a few hrs if you start early. we liked it but do not expect to find isolated beaches to swim in. There are none but the drive is worth it.

Visited April 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, England, United Kingdom
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
“Great locations”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2014

Great food, good staff, good dive locations. Would recommend it. There wasn't anywhere designated to put your bags unless you were staying overnight, so pack light

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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