Great Barrier Reef Liveaboard and Rainforest

It all Starts in Cairns! Home to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef and the oldest living Rainforest in the World the “Daintree Rainforest”. Experience two World Heritage Sites with this Great Barrier Reef Liveaboard & Daintree Rainforest package.

Decide how long you would like to stay on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef onboard “Reef Encounter”. Spend 1 day discovering the splendor of the Daintree Rainforest and “Cape Tribulation”.

Great Barrier Reef Stay

Reef Encounter offers guests an outstanding opportunity to stay on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. This is for anyone who wishes to experience the Great Barrier Reef. Whether it be to snorkel with plenty of time to enjoy the beauty, uniqueness and the quality of the reef and marine life, or for the keen diver who wants to explore everything under the water! Even for those who simply want to relax and enjoy the sunsets over one of the 10 natural wonders of the world.

Reef Encounter offers all the luxury facilities of a reef resort while floating on the pristine waters of the Great Barrier Reef – making it one of the most unique holiday escapes in Australia.

Reef Encounter Facilities

  • A fully air-conditioned 35-metre catamaran hotel, designed for the utmost stability and comfort at sea
  • Large dining saloon
  • TV and lounge area
  • Outdoor, freshwater hot-tub
  • Spacious sundeck with sun loungers
  • Fully licensed bar
  • Large, easy access dive and snorkel platforms
  • Helicopter pad on the roof for low-flying scenic helicopter tours over the coral reef as your transfer to/from Reef Encounter (optional extra)

Reef Encounter Accommodation

  • Check-in time:  10.00am    Check-Out time:  8.00am
  • Spacious, air-conditioned cabins – with ocean views
  • All cabins have their own en-suite toilet & shower
  • Towels and toiletries provided (soap, shampoo)
  • All cabins have Australian power outlets

What’s Included

  • Sleep on the Great Barrier Reef with Reef Encounter
  • All meals prepared fresh daily, by our onboard Chef. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. Fruit available throughout the day along with tea & coffee. All dietary requirements will be catered for – please advise us of these when booking
  • The best crew on the reef! The Reef Encounter team is the best in the business, winning personal and professional awards for outstanding customer service in the tourism industry year after year
  • The latest snorkeling and scuba diving equipment (wetsuits are a small additional charge)
  • Glass bottom boat tour upon request
  • On the voyage to Reef Encounter, you will have the option to listen to an informative Marine Biology presentation about the coral reef and marine animals
  • Free luggage storage facility available at our offices in the Cairns City

Reef Encounter Overnight Itinerary Sample

Day One

  • 7:30 am Breakfast onboard Reef Experience, Marlin Jetty “A” Finger, Cairns. Meet your Top Deck Attendant.
  • 8:00 am Depart Marlin Jetty Marine Biologist Presentation Scuba Dive and Snorkel briefing
  • 9:30 am Arrive Outer Great Barrier Reef ~ Transfer to Reef Encounter
  • 10:30 am Snorkel Session – Sun bake and relax
  • 12 Noon Buffet Lunch
  • 1:30 pm Scuba Dive and Snorkel Session – Relaxation time
  • 3:00 pm Cruise to our next Outer Great Barrier Reef Location
  • 3:30 pm Scuba Dive and Snorkel Session – Relaxation Time
  • 5:30 pm Sunset Cocktails
  • 6:30 pm Dinner under the stars (weather permitting)
  • 7:30 pm Night scuba dive Relaxation time, Stargazing, board games or movie

Day Two

  • 6:30 am Early Morning Scuba Dive or Snorkel Session
  • 7:30 am Breakfast served in your Cabin
  • 8:00 am Cruise to next Outer Great Barrier Reef Site
  • 8:30 am Scuba Dive or Snorkel session
  • 10:30 am Scuba Dive or Snorkel session
  • 12:00 pm Buffet Lunch
  • 1:30 pm Snorkel Session, Glass Bottom Boat Tour – Sunbake – Relax
  • 3:00 pm Transfer from Reef Encounter to Reef Experience Wine, Cheese and Tropical Fruit Platters on return Journey
  • 4:30 pm Arrive at Marlin Marina Cairns Itineraries can change slightly due to different Season

What to Bring

  • Overnight bag – If you wish to store any excess luggage we are happy to do so in our office at 100 Abbott Street Cairns.
  • For safety reasons, Reef Encounter has a “No Shoe” policy. (There is no need to bring extra pairs of shoes)
  • Cash or credit card for purchases of snacks from the bar/souvenirs for sale on-board or underwater camera hire.
  • Sun hat, swimming clothes, sunscreen, sunglasses, light casual clothing.
  • As the air-conditioning is on a set temperature for the heat during the day, it can become quite cool in the evenings, therefor a light pullover, a cardigan will be useful.

How to Get There

Your transfer vessel, Reef Experience, departs from Cairns Marina: ‘A-Finger’ View map to Cairns Marlin Marina

Boarding commences at 7:30 am for check-in, directly on the vessel ‘Reef Experience’

Arrive back to Cairns Marina at approximately 4:30 pm

Where Can I Park?

There are a number of parking stations throughout Cairns that are within walking distance of the Marina.  Click here to see where.

Important Information for Scuba Diving

Safety Comes First!


We have a passion to show you Australia’s Great Barrier Reef so please make sure you understand the scuba diving laws.

Queensland, Australia has some of the strictest scuba diving rules in the world but also the safest scuba diving record.   We are regulated by the Queensland Government Code of Practice and comply with all rules including medical as is the law.

To avoid disappointment on your day of travel we strongly recommend that all of our passengers complete our dive medical questionnaire prior to booking as some medical conditions, age and/or medications may prevent you from scuba diving.   It is always our mission to provide our passengers with the very best Great Barrier Reef experience.

Reef Encounter Medical Questionnaire

We are very happy to help you with any questions you may have.   Please contact our office on 07 4037 2700 or email us at [email protected]

Or alternatively, you may like to consult your own Doctor for a Dive Medical using the Australian Standard Forms ‘AS.4005.1

Flying after Scuba Diving

For a single no decompression scuba dive, you should not fly or go to altitude for at least 18 hours after a scuba dive.  For multiple dives, you should not fly for 24 hours after your last dive. If Skydiving or Hot Air Ballooning you must wait 24 hours after your dive. We recommend waiting a minimum of 24 hours whenever possible

Please Note: Accommodation is not included between tours

Daintree Rainforest Tour Description

On this day, you will be heading to the World Heritage Listed Daintree Rainforest. Discover magnificent coastal rainforest and pristine tropical beaches stretching from the sugar town of Mossman to the Bloomfield River and all within 3 hours from Cairns.

Your journey to the rainforest begins…

You will travel from Cairns to Cape Tribulation (the headlands of the Daintree Rainforest) along one of the most scenic coastal roads in Australia. You will pass through beautiful Palm Cove and continue your journey north to the seaside village of Port Douglas, where you will enjoy a stop at flagstaff hill lookout, overlooking Four Mile Beach and the historic St Mary’s by the Sea.

Mossman Gorge

On the road again to the southern edge of the Daintree National Park – the magical “Mossman Gorge” is surrounded by lush rainforest, where the clear mountain river cuts through thick rainforest and tumbles over boulders on its journey to the sea. Enjoy a morning tea of bush scones then a guided walk in dense tropical Rainforest.

As you head further north towards the Daintree, you will stop at a Tea House for a delicious lunch in a setting unlike any other. After Lunch you will join a small and personalised tour on the Daintree River, taking you through the domain of the native Estuarine crocodile. Look for pythons, tree snakes, butterflies, kingfishers, and other birds & wildlife on this cruise.

Spot Crocodiles in their natural habitat!

After your wildlife spotting cruise, you will cross the mighty Daintree River on a cable ferry. You are now entering the Cape Tribulation section of the Daintree national park! This is where it all begins to change. You will feel like you have entered a different world with Rainforest towering over narrow winding roads. Here, you will enjoy a stop at Alexandra lookout where you will have to opportunity for some stunning photographs on the way to Cape Tribulation.

Arrive at Cape Tribulation

Next, you will continue your journey towards Cape Tribulation. Your experienced local naturalist will take you on guided walks through the Daintree rainforest and help you discover the spectacular Biodiversity of the oldest living rainforest in the world. Furthermore, you will also stop at Kulki lookout and Cape Tribulation Beach – where the rainforest meets the reef.

Daintree Rainforest Tour Highlights

  • Tour of Palm Cove
  • Rex lookout: on one of the nicest coastal drives in Australia
  • Driving town tour of Port Douglas, including Flagstaff hill lookout overlooking Four Mile beach
  • Spectacular Mossman Gorge: guided walk and swim option (if time or weather permits)
  •  A delicious lunch, tropical fruit tasting
  • Morning Tea
  • Daintree River Cruise: try your luck at Crocodile and wildlife spotting
  •  World Heritage Rainforest/Areas
  • Fully guided walks- Rainforest Boardwalks in a unique environment of rainforest Alexandra lookout–coastal views over Daintree River mouth, Low Isles, Snapper Island and beyond to the Great Barrier Reef
  •  Cape Tribulation beach: “where the rainforest meets the reef”
  • Daintree Ice cream company- optional and popular local stop (own expense)
  • Daintree River cable ferry crossing

Daintree Rainforest Inclusions

  • Small group, offering unrivaled, friendly and personalised service
  • Air Conditioned comfortable late models vehicles
  • Mossman Gorge
  • Daintree River Cruise
  • Daintree Ferry
  • Morning Tea & Lunch
  • National Park Fees & Permits
  • Experienced Local Guides
  • Interpretation: friendly, knowledgeable Naturalist/Eco/World Heritage accredited guides

What to Bring

  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Hat,
  • sunscreen,
  • sunglasses
  • Camera
  • Cash for optional purchases
  • Water & Water Bottle
  •  Insect Repellent
  • Raincoat/Umbrella if looks like rain
from $719
from $669
BookRead policies


Twin Bed Stateroom Cabin - Reef Encounter

Reef Encounter Stateroom

Twin Share

2 x Single beds, en-suite cabin. Share with another guest

daintree world heritage rainforest

Daintree Rainforest Luxury Tour

Daintree Rainforest 1 Day Tour

Experience a World Heritage listed locations in style and comfort on this one day luxury Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest package.




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