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By: michael williams

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Sunday, 24-Apr-2011 12:19 Email | Share | Bookmark
Journey Guide to Cairns

On Wednesday the 25th June I boarded Compass for my transfer to Reef Encounter. I have been on Compass before, its a large but comfortable boat and there was only 21 passengers onboard. It was a little rough and I was pleased that I had been wondering around town at 7am trying to find a chemist that was open to get sea sick tablets!!

We reached Reef Encounter at 10:30am and after a safety breiffing and a chat about the dive sites that we would be visiting we were ready to get diving. There were only 3 of us that joined the boat on Wednesday but there were 6 other people who had been there since Tuesday. The cabins were massive and everything was spotless. Once we had dropped our bags in our rooms we jumped in our wet suits and sorted our gear which was to be ours for the full duration of the stay, this makes life a lot easier for divers as it means you can get straight in the water every dive instead of spending 10 mintues setting up your gear.

As part of the couse our first dive was from the smaller boat so we could do a boat entry into the water (instead of the giant strid entry that you do as part of your open water course). On this dive we visited Coral Gardens which I have to say is one of the most beautiful things that I have ever seen.

After this we returned to the boat for lunch. Which included a lovely home made soup, sausage and onion rolls and salads. We let our food settle before heading back to the boat. Our next dive was our Navigation Dive, and after a breiffing on the boat we went back to Hastings Reef to practice using a compass. This was a trying dive (espically as I kept getting lost!) but we got to see lots of turtles, a white tip reef shark and blue spotted lagoon ray. On returning to the boat we all jumped into the Hot Tub, it was a bit of a squeeze as there was nine of use but we got to know each other very quickly! After a nice soak we decided to watch a film before the night dive the choice of flim wasn't brilliant as we allwatched 'Deep Blue Sea' and ended up terrified about doing a night dive!

The night dive was brilliant, it was the first night dive that I have ever done and it was amazing, We saw lots of sleeping turtles and sleeping fish. My buddy got very scarred when we had to turn our tourches off and clung on to be so tight I couldn't move!- told him it was a bad idea to watch Deep Blue Sea, they don't listen to me!

Onboard Compass we went to Breaking patches were we had a snorkel and sunbthed all the way back to Cairns.

There was only one snorkeller onboard, and she said that she had a wonderful time. This would be a good option for a couple travelling to Cairns snorkelling together, but I probably wouldn't reckomend it for a lone snorkeller.\nRelated Sites : cairns

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