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“Good day but plenty of room for improvement.” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Mantaray Charters

Mantaray Charters
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Attraction details
Owner description: Come and discover a whole new world of pleasure in the Fantastic Whitsundays aboard the Award Winning Vessel Mantaray. Visit two of the Whitsundays most pristine locations - beautiful Whitehaven Beach and Mantaray Bay. Whitehaven Beach has an amazing 7km stretch of white silica sand and an amazing lookout at Hill Inlet, while Mantaray Bay encompasses a myriad of colourful corals and tropical fish. Scuba dive and snorkel in this fascinating marine wonderland, swim in the aqua-blue waters or simply feel the sand between your toes. It's yours to enjoy. Experience a day like no other aboard Mantaray. This eco-sensitive cruise operation will whisk you around this World Heritage area at a comfortable speed of 21 knots giving you up to two hours to enjoy Whitehaven Beach/Hill Inlet Lookout, and two hours to explore snorkelling and or diving at Mantaray Bay. You will enjoy lots and lots of fish and beautiful corals. Mantaray has plenty of space, unobstructed views, a large shaded area, easy access for all ages, and an onboard toilet. Enjoy the company of the friendly and experienced crew.Listen to expert commentary about the special nature of the island national parks and the fabulous marine life. Snorkel and scuba dive under the watchful eye of our qualified crew, be tempted by a tantalising Mediterranean-style lunch and enjoy free morning and afternoon tea. It all adds up to an unforgettable addition to your Whitsunday holiday.
Mackay, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Good day but plenty of room for improvement.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 26, 2014

I am a local to the area, however I had interstate guests with me. Our ANZAC day on the Mantaray was good but there are a few things I hope management change or at least review in order to keep their guests happy and the reef safe.

Things we liked about the day:
The staff were friendly and informative. Being a local I absolutely agree to their hard stance on protecting what is left of the reef. To those that complained about not having flippers then further complained about there being dead coral about, let that be a reminder and an eye opener to how precious the reef is.
Hill Inlet is beautiful - not it's not Whitehaven beach... But you can see the beach from the view spot. I am of the firm opinion that Whitehaven be kept fairly secluded. To have it cluttered with hundreds of guest a day, with their smoking, rubbish and overbearing presence on the ecosystem, would ruin the beauty that is Whitehaven. There are people that pay thousands to private picnic on that strip of beach. When I can afford to spend that much money on a tour I wouldn't want hundreds of tourist ruining my moment.
Snorkling- we had a great time, the suits worked well, the pool noodles for floatation were a great idea. We saw turtles, stingrays and a wide variety of fish and coral. The guides kept an eye on us and threw fish food around and we got some great photos.

Things we think the Mantaray staff and management need to review.
Overcrowding
The boat was packed. Luckily it was an overcast day as we had to sit without shade at the back of the boat, which wasn't a problem for me, however we had a pregnant friend with us. I'd like to think if it was a hotter day another person would have given up a shaded spot for her. Between Hill Inlet and snorkelling the crew set up the divers equipment on the rear seats, which left us with no seating.

Food.
We were offered morning tea, afternoon tea and lunch. With the option to purchase soft drinks and snacks. We also were able to have unlimted tea and coffee but there were not enough mugs so we had to share with another couple. Lunch was served after our swim at the hill inlet and we were asked to not fill our plates at first but we could go back for more once the last people arrived from the beach. There were 3 small boat loads of people from hill inlet back onto the Mantaray. The final boat load of people ( those that lazily took their time getting back to the boat ) were 'rewarded' with full plates of food leaving NOTHING left for those that were mindful of the time restraints and filled quarter to half plates. My pregnant friend had a vegan pregnant meal ( she is not vegan) which was lettuce tomato and some pinapple. Her gluten free husband had an equally disappointing meal. After snorkelling fruit and crackers were served and the same rules applied, again the food ran out far too quick. Everyone was starving after the snorkel and the dive.
The normal buffet food was tasty and a good variety but they needed at least twice as much food as it is a long day. (Or half as many people...which would also solve the aforementioned seating problem)

Enviromental concerns.
The crew were really good at telling everyone about the importance of the reef, the heritage listed hill inlet etc, but there were some things that concerned me regarding their actions, which If Mantaray management can comment would be greatly appreciated.
Smoking- the only person I saw smoking was the skipper. He didn't smoke on the Mantaray, but he did have at least one cigarette on the small boat while we were all snorkelling. After his talk to the guests about how important the reef is, I would hope that he didn't flick his cigarette butt into the reef, but unfortunately I am to the thinking that he did. Unless I can be reassured that he disposed of the cigarette in a better way I will forever assume he threw the butt into the coral reef.
Soapy water. On the return journey all of our stinger suits were disinfected in a pink soapy solution, as were the masks, snorkels and some diving gear. They keep a large bin at the back of the boat for cleaning. I was absolutely appalled to see them empty this large soapy solution into the water. My husband and I worked in sustainable and enviromental solutions and hope that management can clarify how safe it is to dump this solution into the reef?

Also another little thing that would have been nice way to show respect and involve the international guests to Australia's history was for their to be a minutes silence for the ANZAC day holiday. We were told this was going to happen and disappointed that it didn't.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank DesignerAbroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Brisbane, Australia
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Ruined the whole trip”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2014

This company canceled on the morning of the trip and was not able to provide any services. It ruined our trip and pur holiday, if you would like to have a secure booking do not book with this company!!!!!

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank ch3bu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wolverhampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Fantastic... would definitely recommend”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 12, 2014

This particular trip was recommended to me by a travel agent in Townsville, and I'm glad that I took her advice! The staff were so warm and friendly, and it was great to be able to take in some of Whitehaven Beach and the sights, before taking part in my first ever dive! I was unlucky with the weather; it was very overcast and it rained, but this did not detract from a fantastic time that seemed to be had by all onboard!

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank bjcox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Great Staff, Great Fun”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 25, 2014 via mobile

I start by putting it simply! I've been out diving with Mantaray 6 times in 5 weeks! I am a repeat customer for a good reason!

Some of the reviews on here are from people who clearly have a very miss represented perception of reality! Do your self a favour and filter through the rubbish.

Mantaray cannot not control the water clarity, the tides, the weather, or your air consumption when diving.

There is a difference between the great barrier reef and the great barrier marine park. Make sure you understand the difference. There are only a few boats that make the 80km trip to the outer reef!! Mantaray is not one of them.

They can however give you great value at a good price. They staff is very courteous, and polite. The skipper is very charismatic, funny and professional and they all know a great deal about the area and the history of the islands. Always professional and great people to be around.

They have the perfect boat for the operation they have. Their west coast cray boat has a huge amount of deck space and make the best dive boats you can buy.
Sure it's not new but you try sitting in salt water for 20 years and look brand new.

Always good food. There is plenty of it and you will be very satisfied!

Keep in mind you're on a boat!! Not in a five star villa with a butler. It's a wet activity....

If you want great value for money and a great time this crew and boat are for you. I will definitely dive with Mantaray again. I will also recommend my friends, family and everyone else to use them.

They are a great example of a family run business and hopefully they will be around for many years to come.

Helpful?
Thank cameron m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Doesn't worth the price. Dissatisfied”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 15, 2014 via mobile

Actually...I was expecting a lot more. First of all...the leaflet offer digital camera rental. I didn't rent it from a other company because of this, they just sell a cheap toy underwater camera for $25.

Secondly, I asked the lady as soon as I jumped on the boat, how long the scuba diving will be...she told me 45 min and actually, we just scuba dive for 32 min (almost a third part of the time missed).

Last but not least important, the captain told us to be wise with the food because we need to leave food to the other people (limited lunch I guess, so smaller portions for everyone).

At the end, I expected at least a discount for the almost third part of the scuba diving missed, but they do not accepted.

Don't choose this one because it is a little bit cheaper, I think that it is better to pay a little bit more for quality and real and trustful information.

Helpful?
1 Thank Andres Leonardo S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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