Become a lazy beachcomber or an inquisitive adventurer on your 7 night island-hopping voyage of discovery with Coral Princess Cruises.
An incredible underwater world will be revealed to you at their numerous exclusive reef sites. Their informative crew will always be on hand to provide assistance and information about the fascinating reef life and habitat. Join their Marine Biologist aboard the glass bottom boat or go snorkelling amongst the brilliant corals and teeming marine life on the fringing reefs of Lizard Island and their exclusive Pelorus Island.. Their experienced Dive Instructor will also be there to offer you the exhilarating experience of scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef.
Make use of the resort facilties at Dunk Island or simply enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of these wonderful tropical islands and coastline.
Their award-winning 35 metre expedition style cruise ships, Coral Princess and Coral Princess II, are large enough to provide all the comforts and facilities you would expect from larger cruise ships, yet small enough to enable them to access reef and island sites inaccessible to other vessels. With their open bridge policy and a maximum of just 50 passengers, your environmental experience will be both personal and memorable.
|Coral Princess||Rates and Departures|
Day 1: Cairns and Thetford Reef
10:00am: Board your Coral Princess Cruises small ship for an 11:00am departure from Cairns. As we depart Cairns and cruise Trinity Bay there is time meet your fellow travellers, settle in and explore your home for the next seven nights. After a delicious lunch we arrive at our exclusive Great Barrier Reef mooring at Thetford Reef and Sudbury Cay. Join the Marine Biologist aboard the glass bottom boat for your first encounter with the reef before gathering on the snorkel deck to participate in a fish feed. Discover some of the 1,500 species of fish that live on the reef, including Spangled Emperor, Giant Trevally and the Hump-Headed Maori Wrasse as they are hand fed by the Marine Biologist. Enjoy the remainder of the afternoon to snorkel in the shallow waters for up-close views of the hundreds of varieties of colourful corals and tropical fish. Our experienced crew will be on hand to provide assistance, advice and guided snorkelling tours for less experienced swimmers. In the evening, join our crew and travelling companions in the top deck lounge as the sun spectacularly sets over the reef before sitting down to a memorable dinner.
Day 2: Hinchinbrook Channel and Pelorus Island Beach BBQ
Awaken this morning as we cruise the spectacular Hinchinbrook Channel, discovering Hinchinbrook Island’s towering cliffs and mangrove eco-systems. Subject to tides, we will cruise the length of the channel, separating the Australian mainland and the island, one of the most diverse marine environments on the Australian coast. Keep an eye out for myriad marine life including crocodiles, dolphins, turtles and dugongs, all of which feed on the region’s plentiful sea grasses and can often be seen frolicking in these waters. Next, enjoy the afternoon to discover Coral Princess Cruises’ very own tropical paradise, Pelorus Island. We invite you to join us on the beach for a gourmet beach BBQ, freshly prepared by the Captain. Then, explore the surrounding rainforest on a guided nature walk. Pelorus’ fringing reef, in the shallow waters just metres off the beach, offers some fantastic snorkelling opportunities. Admire the colourful corals from the glass bottom boat with the Marine Biologist, accompany our Dive Instructor on a guided SCUBA dive or simply relax on the long stretch of golden beach, the choice is yours!
Day 3: Dunk Island Rainforest and Nathan Reef
This morning join our naturalist guides on a fascinating rainforest walk discovering Dunk Island’s unique flora and fauna. We may be lucky enough to see the brightly coloured Blue-Winged Ulysses Butterfly, impossible to miss against the ancient rainforest background. Keen birdwatchers should keep an eye out for many of the up to 100 species of native birds recorded on the island, including the Yellow-bellied Sunbird, Emerald Dove and Orange-footed Scrubfowl. Following lunch, discover Nathan Reef at your own pace. From our exclusive mooring experience some of the most colourful coral gardens found anywhere along the entire length of the reef. View many of the 400 different species of coral living in this World Heritage-listed wonderland. Venture in to the warm tropical waters to explore the corals and marine life on a guided snorkelling tour and join the Marine Biologist for a glass bottom boat tour. For the ultimate Great Barrier Reef experience, take the plunge in the company of our Dive Instructor on an unforgettable SCUBA dive. Later, discover some of the amazing creatures living on the reef at the on-board display tank. Enjoy the rare opportunity for a close up look at sea cucumbers, brightly coloured starfish and other marine life. Laze away the late afternoon on the sun deck, enjoying the comfortable onboard facilities including the spa pool and sun lounges.
Day 4: Fitzroy Island
Travel ashore to explore beautiful Fitzroy Island. Surrounded by a reef system that forms part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Fitzroy Island offers wonderful bush walking opportunities and idyllic white sandy beaches. Enjoy time to explore, relax on the beach or perhaps enjoy a swim in the sheltered waters or a snorkel over the island’s fringing reefs. This afternoon we enjoy time to explore Cairns before reboarding and cruising northwards, past the pretty coastal village of Palm Cove as the sun sets over the Macalister Range.
Day 5: Historic Cooktown and the Reef
We have the morning to discover historic Cooktown. It was here that the famous explorer Captain James Cook took refuge during his voyage of discovery after claiming Australia as a British colony in 1770. You have the option to visit Cooktown’s fascinating historical museum, featuring artefacts from Cook’s ship – Endeavour. See the original anchor and cannon, jettisoned overboard after Endeavour struck a reef and began taking on water. Cooktown is steeped in history with most stone buildings dating back to the 1870s. Enjoy time to discover Cooktown at your own pace. Perhaps visit the Botanic Gardens, where you may catch a glimpse of native Australian wildlife including kangaroos and wallabies. This afternoon we visit one of the remote uninhabited islands of the Great Barrier Reef.
Day 6: Lizard Island and Ribbon Reefs
This morning we awaken moored beside beautiful Lizard Island. The energetic may join our guides on a walk to ‘Cook’s Look’ on the island’s peak. It was from here, the highest lookout on this part of the reef, that Captain Cook was able to navigate a safe passage back through the treacherous waters after repairing the Endeavour near Cooktown almost 250 years ago. A photographer’s delight, the views from the lookout over the World Heritage-listed reef and surrounding tropical islands are magnificent. Lizard Island’s fringing reef, in the shallow waters just metres off the beach, offers some fantastic snorkelling opportunities. Discover giant clams and a profusion of fish. Enjoy the remainder of the morning at your leisure. You may wish to simply relax on the golden beach soaking up the sun, join the Marine Biologist for a glass bottom boat tour, or for the ultimate Great Barrier Reef experience, accompany our Dive Instructor on an unforgettable SCUBA dive. The choice is yours! This afternoon we cruise to Ribbon Reef No. 9, a spectacular and seldom visited part of the reef where our activities will include more snorkelling opportunities and glass bottom boat tours with the Marine Biologist.
Day 7: Ribbon Reefs
The Great Barrier Reef is not actually one continuous reef, but a series of thousands of individual coral cays stretching over 2,000 kilometres between the town of Bundaberg and the tip of Australia at Cape York. We spend today visiting two of the most pristine sections of the reef, Ribbon Reef No. 3 and Rachel Carson Reef. Explore the coral gardens and marine life with guided snorkelling and glass bottom boat tours. Our Marine Biologist will explain the natural history and evolution of the reef and help you discover the local wildlife, which includes sea turtles, giant clams, rays and over 200 different species of native birds. Today will also be your last opportunity to experience the reef through SCUBA diving, so allow our Dive Instructor to guide you on the experience of a lifetime. This evening, we enjoy our final memorable night cruising the Great Barrier Reef.
Day 8: Cairns
8:00am: Farewell our Captain, crew and new-found friends before disembarking at Trinity Wharf in Cairns.
Itineraries subject to change due to weather and other operational requirements.