Spread over 348,000 square kilometres in the Coral Sea, the Great Barrier Reef is a vast marine sanctuary featuring over 2,500 reefs and 900 islands. Sail the ethereal Whitsunday Islands on a luxury superyacht charter, take a seaplane over the atolls, and discover lively seascapes alive with rare underwater species.
This is an example of an eight day private yacht charter itinerary exploring the Great Barrier Reef. Itineraries are created individually for every client based around personal preferences and how you want to spend your time onboard.
Join your yacht charter in Cairns and enjoy a welcome drink. Keep your camera ready as the yacht cruises to Opal Reef. Experience your first taste of the stunning Great Barrier Reef directly off the swimming platform. Snorkel this crescent shaped reef near the edge of the continental shelf to see the colourful corals. Go diving to see the abundance of marine life on this outer reef. Watch the sunset with a cocktail in hand before a gourmet dinner prepared by your onboard chef.
Start the day with a dive to explore the coral gardens at the southern end of Opal Reef followed by a dive at the most northern tip. Have a late lunch on board as the yacht cruises north to Escape Reef. Do some bottom fishing for a sought after Coral Trout. Try your hand at sportsfishing for some of the most iconic bluewater species on the Great Barrier Reef. Go snorkelling in the lagoon side of the reef or diving on the east side. See giant clams dotted amongst the branch and mushroom corals. Enjoy wonderful fresh fish for dinner.
Enjoy breakfast onboard as the superyacht sails to Cooktown, famously the landfall of Captain Cook in 1770 after his ship ran aground on the reef. Explore this pretty historical town. Visit the Cooktown Creative Arts Association shop for some locally-made souvenirs or go to the James Cook Museum. Take a sunset cruise heading up the Endeavour River to watch the sunset over the distant ranges. As the boat navigates through the maze of smaller creeks, listen to tales about Captain Cook’s infamous passage along the Cape.
Nature & Luxury
Wake up to the picturesque views of Lizard Island. Head ashore to begin exploring the National Park - have a tour with a resident naturalist guide. Take the paddleboards to discover the 24 beaches. Hike up to Cook’s lookout – don’t forget your camera - or head to the resort’s spa for some pampering. As the sun starts to dip below the horizon, enjoy a 7-course tasting menu in a private pavilion on the beach planned with the Executive chef. Finish up in the Driftwood Bar for that final nightcap.
Ribbon Reef #10
Cruise to the most northerly of the Ribbon Reefs - #10. At the northern tip dive or snorkel Cod Hole Bay. Swim alongside these gentle giant Potato Cod – take a selfie or two. Cruise down to the south of #10 to dive the iconic site, Pixies Pinnacle, a pyramid of coral and marine life, two metres under the surface. Dive down to discover hard and soft corals, gorgonians, sea whips and sponges. Explore the caves and overhangs - see lionfish, moray eels, shrimp, anemones with their clownfish, and flaming file shells.
Ribbon Reef #3
Wake up at anchor and tender in to Fisherman’s Wharf for an exclusive aboriginal tour with passionate tour guide Willie. Walk through the bush to six aboriginal rock art sites and an ancestral Birth Site where Willie's grandfather was born. Gain an understanding of the spiritual meanings and stories behind the paintings. Pick up some survival techniques of the Nugal-warra people. Taste a green ant or two! Return to the yacht and cruise out to Ribbons Reef #3. Dive the world’s famous Steve's bommie site.
Awake near the mainland at Cape Tribulation for a day in the tropical rainforest. Walk up to beautiful Cape Trib Beach House nestled in the Daintree Rainforest. Guides will take you on a tour in the world’s oldest rainforest ziplining between six tree canopy platforms. Experience this World Heritage site through the air. Return to the boat for a lunch. Relax on the sundeck. Take the tender to a sandy cay to see the sun setting over the reef whilst enjoying beers or cocktails. Head back to the yacht for another delicious dinner under the Southern Cross.
On the last morning of your unforgettable holiday, take an early morning cruise to the unique island of the Low Isles. Snorkel directly off the beach. Spot the large population of turtles. Finally cruise on to Cairns for disembarkation.