Be guided to the best parts of the Great Barrier Reef!

An underwater wonderland stretching out 348,000 square kilometres, the Great Barrier Reef is truly one of the seven wonders of the world. It is by far Australia’s biggest tourist attraction, bringing more than 1.5 million visitors to experience this World Heritage. But where does one start? There are over 2,900 reefs to pick one, each having its own unique range of magnificent marine life. Luckily for you, we’ve narrowed it down a bit. Selecting our top favourite reef spots that can make your Great Barrier Reef adventure a truly memorable experience.

  • Hastings Reef

    Regardless of if you are a first-timer or a pro diver, Hastings Reef is for you. Featured as one of the top spots for snorkelling or scuba diving, the area stretches out more than 10 square metres, with a depth of about 35 metres. Corals cover the seafloor, ranging in species, shape, and colour, with small creatures and various fishes making these corals their home, including the famous clownfish from the popular movie ‘Finding Nemo’.

  • Saxon Reef

    Hidden between the larger Hastings Reef and Norman Reef, Saxon Reef is a small slice of paradise. A less crowded option that is bursting with everything Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is famous for. A kaleidoscope of both deep and shallow regions, with both a clear shelter lagoon and another underwater sand pinnacles region. The clear lagoon can be great for inexperienced swimmers who might want to stand up to take a paddling break, all the while still watching the fish whiz around them. The pinnacles section has an exceptional range of creatures, with eels, reef sharks, and stingrays milling through the reef.

  • SS Yongala Wreck

    Enjoy a bit of history with your reef experience at SS Yongala Wrecks! In 1911, the SS Yongala was travelling from Melbourne to Cairns, when it sunk off the coast along Cape Bowling Green. It remains there to this day and is listed as the largest and most intact historic shipwreck in Australia. It starts 15 metres from the surface and extends down 29 metres. The entire ship has been taken over by marine life, with coral and fish covering the rusting metal, and larger marine creatures such as sharks, turtles, and sea snakes roaming nearby.

  • Breaking Patches

    Sitting in less than 14 metres of waters, Breaking Patches is a shallow patch of reef just west of Michaelmas Cay. Due to its shallow nature, it is the perfect habitat for soft corals, with these fleshy corals swaying with the motion of the ocean as a number of creature’s roam about them. If you are looking for a snorkelling spot, this reef is for you, with many enjoying floating on the surface above the coral, and duck diving into the lagoon to see reef sharks and lagoon rays.

  • Agincourt Reef

    Agincourt is not just one reef section, but a series of smaller reefs all jumbled together. Nestled 65 kilometres off the coast of Port Douglas, the region is fit for all experience levels. It is also home to a permeant pontoon, making it the perfect spot for passengers to snorkel, dive, and view the spectacular reef from the semi-submersible vessels.

Explore the Great Barrier Reef Tours!

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward began with a passion for travel and turned it into a thriving tourism business. He co-founded Sightseeing Tours Australia after starting out as a tour guide in Melbourne. Cameron delights in helping visitors get the most from their trip to Australia. Whether he's leading tours or writing about his favourite places, Cameron loves sharing his local insight with fellow travellers.

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