Reef Encounter

Abbott St 100, 4870, Cairns
Abbott St 100
4870, Cairns
(07) 4037 2700

Opening hours

  • Monday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Thursday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Friday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Saturday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Cairns liveaboards, daily departures for snorkelling, scuba diving and diving lessons, pristine diving locations on the Great Barrier Reef.

Scuba divers, snorkelers and those who wish to stay on a floating hotel cruise on the Great Barrier Reef can travel together with a Cairns liveaboard tour! Live and sleep on the reef and see it at its best – day and night!

An excellent alternative to a resort based holiday and a fantastic upgrade from a day trip, it’s one of the most unique holiday escapes in Australia!

Accommodating only 42 guests at any time, Reef Encounter is large enough to provide the comforts of the largest cruise ships yet small enough to have access to spectacular reef locations inaccessible to other vessels.

Enjoy greater flexibility with your travel plans and start your liveaboard holiday on the day that suits you – and stay as long as you like! Boarding daily in Cairns at 7:30 am from Cairns Marlin Marina.

Alternatively, helicopter transfers are low flying scenic excursions over the Coral Sea that are an excellent way to start or end your Great Barrier Reef adventure!

We visit a variety of snorkel/dive sites per day. Our experienced Captain selects the optimal sites for the weather conditions, so you can see the very best the Great Barrier Reef has to offer.

Our crew are by far our greatest asset, and it’s their passion and pride that does make all the difference! If you’re not a confident swimmer, one of our guides will get in the water and assist you.

For an extra touch of luxury, select our Top Deck Club package. Champagne on arrival, breakfast in bed, dinner under the stars and a personal valet/guide to ensure an experience nothing short of breathtaking!

See the Coral Sea up close and personal with the best scuba diving Cairns has to offer. Packages are tailored for all skill levels. All scuba equipment is included. Read more

Learn to dive or complete an advanced or rescue diver course. We are a dive training vessel and offer a wide range of scuba diving courses. Read more cannot guarantee that the companies that appear in the directory are certified travel agencies or that they have the corresponding licenses. The majority of companies that appear in the directory are travel agencies, but other types of companies also appear such as tour operators, guided tour providers, etc. We recommend that you request the Travel Agency registration number of the business you are going to attend.

Reef Encounter: Reviews

5/5 (50 Reviews)
Sebastian Peña Salazar 1 week ago

Fantastic experience: I did my Open water dive certification with Reef encounter in a 3 days/2 nights live aboard excursion and it was excellent. The instructor (Joe) was great and also the rest of the crew on board (Santiago, Archie, Miguel, Lu, etc), which were always helpful. The food was good and the rooms were really comfortable, even the bed was better than mine back home. I fully recommend going diving or snorkeling with Reef Encounter.

somnath samal 3 weeks ago

Fantastic experience: Love the experience with the crew . The team onboard take care of every detail from safe try to your comfort. I really appreciate for the concern of the two crew specially to Gabriel making this experience most memorable out of all my dives. I don’t remember the girl name in the photo among the crew special thanks to her for arranging my powered googles

Catherine Smith 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: Exceeded our expectations! Our Host Epi was an excellent dive instructor and underwater guide. Helicopter brought us to the boat! Magical experience

Jade Lacey 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: Magical! I honestly couldn't fault my experience with Reef Encounter. I had the pleasure of doing my open water course with Reef Encounter. I had an amazing trainer, Gabriel was incredibly patient with my partner and myself as he taught us valuable knowledge about diving. He was able to make me feel at ease and relaxed under the water. His experience and knowledge were invaluable, I feel like I was lucky enough to learn from the best trainer on the East Coast.

Diana Dascalu 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: We had such an amazing experience on board the Reef Encounter - and that’s all really because of their amazing crew! We had a 2D 1N stay - in the middle of the wet season and with one less experienced swimmer. The crew was fantastic and helpful - even went on an assisted swim with us. We also took advantage of their marine biology tour which is so incredible! All in all - great service, a lovely stay on a comfortable boat with amazing food - and most importantly a lot of water time on this amazing reef!

Ktown 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: This was my 2nd time 3 nights/4 days diving on the GBR and it was amazing. The accommodations, the food, all were very good on the live-aboard and the GBR speaks for itself. I also thought the everyone, from the captain to the staff even to the day volunteers were very friendly and helpful. I highly recommend Reef Encounter.

Tim Hope 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: This is a really professional company that will absolutely take care of you for your trip out to the Great Barrier Reef. Right from the point we were welcomed aboard the transfer boat (Reef Experience), the trained staff were so helpful and clearly had a safety first approach. After a 90-minute trip, we reached the main accommodation boat for two full-on days of snorkelling and/or diving. The safety first approach continued seamlessly, again with a friendly and helpful team to assist with any questions and concerns. The food tasted great, the rooms were a reasonable size, with air conditioning, the beds were super comfortable. There is plenty of hot water for showers. There were plenty of water sessions each day at 6.30am, 8.30am, 10.30am, 1.15 pm, and 3.30 pm with a night dive if you're scuba diving, and if you have the necessary experience. The team offers guides for both snorkelling and scuba (extra charges), and if you're at all nervous at swimming, there are buoyancy vests, pool noodles, and life rings. I'd say this is definitely not 1st class accommodation, but it's all the better for it. It's a really effective working dive boat. It's clear from the first time you meet the team that they all love what they do and that they love enabling their customers to enjoy the experience too. Definitely can't recommend these guys highly enough. We'll done Reef Encounter.

Kim Nguyen 1 month ago

Fantastic experience: We did one night on the boat and it was the best experience of our lives. The boat is outdated (exterior looking) but I imagine the wear and tear happens quick with how many guests they receive. You arrive at the dock to get on a large excursion boat. It takes you to the main boat you’ll be staying on and you’ll transfer over. We did a safety briefing and then was given our room. Rooms were spacious for a boat. There was 2 of us with 2 single beds. Small bathroom, but again we’re on a boat. You can do snorkeling and or scuba diving on this excursion. We only did snorkeling as we didn’t have enough time before and after to safely scuba dive. They recommend no flying before or after diving within 24 hours. We got to snorkel 6 times during our whole time there at different 3 different sites and it was incredible. Time went by so fast. Highly recommend going to as many swim sessions as you can as the different times of days can make a difference on the lighting you see with the coral and different animals you can see. Shout out to Gabe for being our lead. He was amazing to have. The rest of the staff were friendly and passionate about what they do. Safety was never a concern for me during this whole excursion because the staffed worked hard and maintained many safety protocols. I really appreciated that. There’s a photographer on the boat and she did amazing getting shots of us, corals, and animals we saw. You can rent gogros as well from them. Food was delicious every meal. I CANNOT wait to come back.

Stephanie Osguthorpe 2 months ago

Fantastic experience: This was an amazing experience. Our family stayed for 4 days onboard and got certified. It was convenient, the guides knew what they were doing, and it is a very well done tour. The guides were so cool and all very nice. Kozel helped with our photography Joe was our scuba guide Santi helped us out with some scuba stuff too. The food was also great with an Italian chef who gave us amazing food every day. Great experience would do again.

Andy Marshall 2 months ago

Fantastic experience: Great crew and experience on the Great Barrier Reef! Thanks!

Jason Weinberg 2 months ago

Fantastic experience: My wife and I had an incredible time on Reef Encounter. We booked the Top Deck Club (double bed) for one night, though we had wished we done 2 nights. Our guide Gabriel was really nice and very helpful in helping us learn to scuba. Hoping we have the opportunity to come back one day.

david pearson 2 months ago

Fantastic experience: We had a one night stay on Reef Encounter and it was great- good food and facilities on board, excellent cabin, wonderful snorkelling. All the crew are really friendly and helpful. It was so much better than a day trip and we’d thoroughly recommend it to anyone.

Alain Belanger 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: Did the 2 day one night Top Deck trip, an amazing experience. Our host Gabriel took care of all our needs. He led us on 6 snorkel sessions over 2 days finding interesting coral and fish. Reserved a table for all our meals including our private top deck sunset dinner with complimentary prosecco. The crew could not have been more attentive to all the passengers. Highly recommend booking this trip of a lifetime.

Loren Crawford 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: My husband and I had such a wonderful time with Reef Encounters. We spent most of our time diving with our AMAZING guide/valet Jip. She was such a great guide—we saw a turtle, sharks, octopi, and so much more. Strongly recommend having her has your valet and/or guide! She went out of her way to make sure we were comfortable and that we had great diving sessions. She really made our trip amazing!

Jessica Kirkwood 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: We did the Top Deck with Reef Encounter. Absolutely worth it, especially if you are infrequent divers. We had the most amazing experience on the @reefencountercairns I can’t say enough about how incredible it was. The crew were all amazing. The food was fantastic. The gear was good quality, well organized and well kept. The crew really did make it a great experience. From helping you get your gear on to delicious well balanced meals. Loads of vegan options! Then there is the whole diving on The Great Barrier Reef. We saw so many amazing things: Sharks, turtles, jellyfish, crabs, lobsters, barracuda, puffer, clown (Nemo), blue tang (Dori), parrot, sea cucumber, nudie branches, morish idols (Gill), star, and schools and schools of different fish. Also a special thanks to our guide Bernat (Dino). He was a fantastic adult babysitter!! He did a great reintroduction to diving letting us get comfortable again. Then we didn’t have to worry about where to go once we got out, he found all the things then got us back to the boat, that’s the hard part! We would do it again?? Absolutely Do we recommend it?? Hands down, yes Is this something we will remember and talk about forever?? Yep! #reefencountercairns #lifeexperience #diving #greatbarrierreef #divingthegreatbarrierreef #turtle #featherstarfish #lifememories Bleepbloop (signing off Reef Ex. style) ❤️

Robin Born 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: I was a top deck customer for 3N/4D doing the Nitrox and Advanced Adventurer (SSI) on the boat with a private instructor. For me this experience was unforgettable, I have had with Epi the Dive Instructor quite an experienced diver who loves every aspect of diving, could not have wished for a better instructor to do the course. We visited 6 different sites in those 4 days and the Crew was phenomenal. Big thanks to all of you. I felt, however, that the ship could have used a refurbishment outside and inside. It did not disturb my experience in any way but I feel for such an established Tour Operator it is important to have the Main Vessel in a better state than it is now, especially from the outside. Def. would go again with the same operator if I am returning. Animals: Reef sharks at night (plenty), Giant Travellies, Sepias, Octopus, Turtles, all kinds of Wrasses (Napoleon Wrasse as well), Sting Rays, etc. Dive Sites: Norman Reef (Fingers, Caves, Troppos), Hastings Coral Garden, Saxon Reef (Twin Peaks, Tree Peaks) Remark: I booked 3 days in advance and checked several times the forecast to make sure conditions are perfect. Especially during rainy season you can end up in bad weather with some winds/storms. My way of course you risk that all beds are sold out, but the other way you risk that you have 3-4 shaky/windy dives.

Aaron Rosenberg 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: I never leave reviews, but wanted to for the Reef Encounter because it was one of the best experiences of my life. My wife and I did the 3 day 2 night liveaboard trip as part of our honeymoon, and loved every minute of it. The entire staff was extremely friendly & helpful (I want to call out individual names but it was honestly everyone), the food was amazing and Chef Max was extremely accommodating to food allergies, our instructor Nico was awesome and helped us get certified on the trip. Probably goes without saying but the Great Barrier Reef was the most incredible coral system we’ve ever seen and we got to dive with sharks, turtles, squids, octopi, and so much more. We’re contemplating quitting our jobs, moving out to Australia, and trying to work on the Reef Encounter because it was that incredible. 10/10 would recommend.

Lauren 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: We did a one night, 2-day live aboard and loved it! They pack in a ton of time in the water, up to 6 dives and 2 snorkel sessions. The dive guides were great, a special shout out to Ella and Louis! Also, the food far surpassed my expectations. Fabulous intro to the GBR!

Pieter Danhieux 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: We (wife, friend and 9 year old) recently had the pleasure of going on a diving trip with Reef Encounter, and it was nothing short of spectacular! From the moment we boarded, the service was top-notch. Our personal valet, Will (a dive master, marine biologist and enabler of pranks), was the epitome of professionalism and attentiveness. He consistently went above and beyond to ensure our comfort, serving up freshly brewed flat whites with different milks after each dive and making valiant attempts at crafting cocktails at night. The diving experience with Will itself was safe and well-organized, allowing us to fully immerse ourselves in the underwater wonders without any concerns. The marine life was vibrant and abundant, providing a spectacular show that captivated us all. Even when the adults went diving, someone always looked after our daughter (snorkelling, or something else). The whole crew (Yip, Santiago,..) were a great bunch that made this whole operation run flawlessly. While the absence of ice cream for dessert was a minor disappointment, it was easily overshadowed by the overall quality of the food served. Impressive to get served a royal breakfast with freshly baked croissants, fresh fruit and bacon and eggs in the middle of the ocean. Lunch was multiple healthy salads, with chicken, taco's with mince. The accommodation was another highlight of the trip. The beds were cosy and comfortable, ensuring a good night's sleep after a day filled with snorting up compressed air. Oh, and there is a Jacuzzi on board the ship as well. In summary, Reef Encounter (and their fish friends) provided an exceptional diving trip that I would highly recommend for diving/snorkelling families. The combination of Will's outstanding service, delicious food, comfortable accommodations, and the magnificent underwater spectacle made this an unforgettable experience. Looking forward to my next adventure with them!

Ali Gorji 3 months ago

Fantastic experience: We were fortunate to spend three incredible days on the Reef Encounter boat, where I had my first-ever encounter with the Great Barrier Reef and enjoyed my very first dives with a team of incredibly passionate individuals. Huge thanks to Santiago, Francisco, Joe, Lou, and literally every single person on board for making this an unforgettable experience. The true highlight of the trip was the warm and intimate atmosphere created by these amazing people, allowing everyone to fully savor the experience. And in a like manner, undeniably remarkable stare into the eyes of sharks in the flesh! I'm uncertain when we’ll have the chance to revisit Australia in the future, but when we do, reuniting with this fantastic team is undoubtedly a major reason for it!

Bill Davies 4 months ago

Fantastic experience: My wife and I had an amazing time diving on the Reef Encounter. We did 2 days/1 night, and spent the whole time diving and eating. It was my wife’s first diving experience and the crew provided great instruction and patience. Much appreciated! She wants to dive again :). The reef put on a show as well with plenty of sharks, turtles, and even a dolphin cameo. Thanks for a great time!

Linda Calder 5 months ago

Fantastic experience: My favourite reef experience out of Cairns (and I have done various boat trips over the years)! The snorkelling is amazing at the various outer reefs - so much to see and enormous variety of critters. Staff are friendly, attentive, experienced and helpful. Food is excellent and caters for all dietary requests. The boat is comfortable. Big rooms, private ensuites, comfortable beds. Amazing value for money that provides such special opportunity to to experience staying on the great barrier outer reef.

Madeleine Barker 5 months ago

Fantastic experience: Reef Encounter runs a really tight ship (no pun intended). We spent 2 nights on the reef with them during our honeymoon and were really impressed with 1) the FOOD wow 2) the fun atmosphere they create 3) they have their operations down to a T. My only piece of feedback is they could put a little more love into the ship itself. Some sanding, staining, new linens would go a long way. Highly recommend for anyone looking to have a great time on the GBR.

Isja Visserman 5 months ago

Fantastic experience: I absolutely had the best time on Reef Encounter! The diving was world-class, crew was amazing (go Santi!) and very social, dive equipment was well taken care of, the food was very tasty and the rooms were comfortable and very spacious. I even got a room for myself! During the 2 days on the boat, I did 6 dives. Everything was very well organized and scheduled, and we visited a few different really good dive sites. The highlight of the trip for me was the night dive. During the dive we were surrounded by hunting Giant Trevallies, White tip reef sharks and Grey reef sharks; an unreal experience! Being a solo traveler, I found that it was very easy to meet new people on board. On the way back, the Reef Encounter guests got a private seating area on the transfer boat, and there were fruits, cheese, biscuits and wine ready for us. Perfect end of a perfect trip, I’ll be back for sure!

Simon Vaïsse 6 months ago

Fantastic experience: Very good experience with Reef Encounter ! The dives spots were beautiful and the crew is awesome, very friendly and always ready to help or give advices even for new divers like me. Quality food is served thanks to the chef. A special thanks to Bernat, my dive instructor, who was amazing ! He has a very good mood and put you in the best conditions to learn diving. Cheers mate !

Alexander Ledgister 6 months ago

Fantastic experience: Reef encounter was an amazing experience. The staff were very friendly and extremely helpful. It was my first time diving and my instructors Bernard , and Santi explained everything in an easily understandable manner. The food and living situation were great and I had no complaints. Overall I would say that reef encounter was the highlight of my trip and I would 100% recommend this to anyone who’s thinking about choosing them for their reef experience.

Anantha Narayanan 6 months ago

Fantastic experience: We had such an amazing time on Reef Encounter and would definitely recommend this trip if you are in Cairns. We did a 3 day, 2 night trip dive trip and had a spectacular experience. The crew were incredible and really went out of their way to make the trip extra memorable. Marina the purser and Andreas the dive supervisor are worth special mentions and Shiv the photographer was excellent too. The rooms were comfortable, the meals delicious and the common areas were a great space to make new friends. Highly recommended, we can’t wait to return! xx

Miran 6 months ago

Fantastic experience: I stayed on Reef Encounter for 3 Day/2 Nights with my dad and did my Advanced Course as well! My dad and I agree that every product on this trip is tip top! The food is delicious and filling, the bedrooms are spacious and clean, the staff are all very friendly as well as professional, all the equipment is set up so organised and the reef sites are absolutely phenomenal! We enjoyed every single dive and highly recommend this liveaboard to anyone wanting to make the most of visiting the Great Barrier Reef! There is no other place like this! Also special thanks to Nicholas, Andreas and Lincoln! They were all so patient, friendly and very informative. Overall we both had such a good experience we wanted to extend our trip to a week! Highly recommend to everyone. Thank you Reef Encounter for the unforgettable memories!

Bubi_HD 6 months ago

Fantastic experience: I did my advanced open water diver with the diving instructor Bernat and it was great! I really enjoyed the diving sessions and I hat a ton of fun under water. Also the food was great and the crew was super nice. I personally think the hostie program was a bit too much work for the two guaranteed diving sessions a day. The last days of being a hostie I couldn't even attend to the diving sessions because I was just too exhausted from working and diving was more a burden than fun. But I guess you can try out the hostie program if you want. You can always leave the next day if you feel that's too much for you. All in all it was still an amazing experience

Arup P 7 months ago

Fantastic experience: Me and my partner spent 4 days and 3 nights aboard getting Scuba certified. We had a great experience with them, the instructors were knowledgeable, patient and very helpful. The gear was well taken care of and not lacking in any way. The food was very good and plentiful. The rooms were spacious and clean. The staff were joyful and everything on board was tip top. Loved our time on the GBR with Reef Encounter. The only gripe was that the underwater photos were 3 times more expensive on the live abroad than on the day boat. That’s a serious markup between the 2 boats.

Sean Michael 7 months ago

Fantastic experience: My partner and I did the beginner dive package, two days one night and it was incredible!!! As soon as we arrived on the boat we were taken care of by Marina and her fantastic crew. The food was delicious and the accommodation very comfortable. Our dive instructor Bernat was brilliant. I had only previously dived once before, and so was still a little nervous, but he made the whole experience comfortable with his professional manner. He also gave me the opportunity to do a beginners night dive, which exceeded all expectations as we saw sharks and a myriad of different marine life. Going on this trip has inspired my partner and I to go for our open water and we would definitely go back Reef Encounter. If you’re thinking of booking your GBR trip, look no further!

Michael Rae 10 months ago

Fantastic experience: By far, the best way to see the reef. I did my SSI Open Water course two years ago on Reef Encounter and have just returned with 4 friends to do even more diving. Every single dive is truly amazing, rooms are comfortable, meals are excellent, and the crew are just awesome.

Allison Jacobson 11 months ago

Fantastic experience: Did a 2 day 1 night referral dive and I couldn’t recommend anything more. The crew was fantastic, they had a great system set up, and I had so much fun diving because the reef was beautiful in the spots they brought us. Big shoutout to Kevin for being a wonderful instructor.

Daniel 11 months ago

Fantastic experience: “The best crew on the reef” Just as the crews shirts already state, this is by far the best GBR liveaboard. I’ve been out on reefy now 3 times. Did my OWD out on the reef in May 2022. It can be fairly hard to do all your training in the sometimes choppy water, but you will be rewarded with incomparable views from the first moment on. The office crew is so nice and helpful. I had to amend my booking several times, but they have always helped me out :) You will never get hungry on board, they have a great selection of food all day long Thank you guys so much, I’ll certainly be back soon!

Evan Hindman 1 year ago

Fantastic experience: Awesome Great Barrier Reef live-aboard experience. My wife and I stayed for 3 days/2 nights, and did 10 dives in the 3 days. Expectations for diving on the reef were super high - and very much lived up to the hype! Turtles, sharks, rays, tons of tropical fish, and beautiful coral. Accommodations on board were very nice - big rooms, comfy beds, nice hot showers. Food was excellent - 3 big meals a day plus snacks and dessert and 24 hour coffee and tea. Staff was also great - friendly, attentive, made us feel very safe and comfortable while diving. A great way to experience the unique and beautiful Great Barrier Reef - highly recommend!

Edwin 1 year ago

Fantastic experience: We stayed for the 1-night liveaboard dive trip and had an amazing experience. It was organized and allowed us to make the most out of our time in the water. We managed to fit in 6 dives (including 1 night dive) and 2 snorkel sessions over the course of 2 days. The menu was also great with more than enough food for seconds or thirds.

Vit Spinka 1 year ago

Fantastic experience: Very friendly team. The food was great. The boat moves between locations about twice a day, so you will see a lot. This multi-day experience is geared towards people who can swim well and are either happy to spend many hours snorkeling, and even more for divers - from first timers that want to try it out to open water licensed that want many dives a day. It’s intense, you can spend hours and hours in the water. However, if you don’t feel like doing that, you might find it boring and a waste of money. In that case, look at other options (perhaps Reef Experience from the same company).

Anthony Abaroa 1 year ago

Fantastic experience: Fantastic experience with reef encounter. My wife and I did a 2 night stay with no prior scuba experience during our honeymoon. With the resort scuba option they had us in the water enjoying the incredible fish and coral in no time. Ship was nice, food was very good, staff were incredibly friendly and helpful. Truly a magical part of our special trip. Would recommend to beginners and experienced divers alike. Snorkeling was great too

Rebecca Mackney 1 year ago

Fantastic experience: If I could give 10 stars I would! I would highly recommend Reef Encounter to anybody. This was our first liveaboard experience and we stayed for 3 days/2 nights with the 'top deck' package. From the minute we stepped on the transfer boat, the crew were attentive and friendly. The transfer to the Encounter was easy, and the Encounter was so comfortable. There were plenty of areas to relax, and the rooms were really comfortable. The food was delicious, and there was plenty of it! The dive deck was set up really well - it wasn't too crowded and we had space to get geared up without feeling cramped. The diving was incredible. We saw sharks, turtles, rays, lion fish, and so much more. The night dives were the best!! Our guide, Jaime, was fantastic - from completing our Nitrox course, the set up of our gear, guiding us to the best spots at each dive site, recommending the best dive sessions each day, and the level of service he provided us on the boat - he made the entire trip so effortless for us. We will definitely come back to Reef Encounter again, maybe for a longer trip next time!!!! Thank you Jaime and the rest of the crew Edit to update: we came back this time for 4 days/3 nights on top deck and it was just as phenomenal. We had Rich guiding us and he was fantastic. Once again, a truly wonderful experience. We will be making this an annual trip!

Giles Pollock 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Went out with Reef Encounter for a five night liveaboard trip and had a great time! The experience is different to the typical liveaboard where amenities are utilitarian or cramped, Reef Encounter has spacious rooms with ensuite bathrooms (water is purified on board) and a large and comfortable lounge area spacious enough to easily accommodate large numbers of guests. Food is excellent as well, you definitely don't go hungry while aboard even if doing six dives a day. The dive deck is also quite spacious with easy access to the water via steps and a lowerable platform, and 32% nitrox is available for an additional cost, all of which can be arranged while aboard. The staff are friendly, enthusiastic and professional as well, with excellent knowledge about the reef and its many various inhabitants. I'll definitely be coming back again for more diving in the future!

David Ruddell 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Positive: Professionalism , Quality , Value

Max Stirk 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Could not have asked for more for my first scuba experience. Fantastic live aboard experience, made all the more special thanks to the care and attention of our assigned staff member Amy - strongly recommend the Top Deck package for anyone looking for the perfect way to experience the reef. Great food, patient and careful instruction. A clear focus on safety - as well as fun. Amazing amazing amazing. Turtles, sharks, thousands of tropical fish, cuttlefish... Thank you Reef Encounter and Amy!

Mateus Brisolla Bonissoni 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Positive: Professionalism , Quality , Responsiveness , Value

Margo McLay 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Positive: Professionalism , Quality , Responsiveness , Value

Sarah Millard 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: Stayed 5 Nights/6 Days on Reef Encounter, undertaking our Open Water Diver Certification and Advanced Adventurer Certification whilst we were staying on the boat. We had booked our trip as a 'top deck' trip/room, Which meant that we had a lovely room at the front of the boat with plenty of windows and our own instructor the entire stay, we also had dinner every night on the top deck, to watch and enjoy the sunset. Instructor: We definitely lucked out, as we had the BEST Instructor, SANTI! We cannot thank Santi enough for such a fantastic time on the boat! Santi went out of his way to make our stay comfortable, relaxing, and yet still very adventurous! Santi worked around our choice of activities/when we wanted to dive during the day. Santi also organised multiple boat drop dives for us, so we could see different parts of the reef that were further away. As part of our certifications we also did deep dives, night dives, marine life identification, navigation, buoyancy, We were super sad to leave Santi when we checked-out, we just wanted to stay on the boat and keep diving with him! He was so knowledgable, an excellent instructor, and we had the best dives! He is such a valuable part of the team, we hope he will be on the boat next time we visit Reef Encounter! Other staff: All the other staff were very friendly, and hospitable, and made our stay very comfortable. Shout out to Lauren the photographer for the beautiful photos and Julia for helping instruct us on our deep dive. The staff back at the office in Cairns were also wonderful, organising for our extra luggage to be on the transfer bus, pick us up at the wharf and take us to the airport to pick up a hire car, very helpful! Room & Food: The room had plenty of windows. The bed was very comfortable, plenty of pillows. It was excellent having an ensuite in the room! The air conditioning in the room makes the room quite cold, so bring a jumper/some warmer clothes just incase. The food was excellent, every meal was delicious and so were the snacks inbetween meals! Diving equipment: As we were new to diving, we did not have our own gear except wetsuits. We were able to wear our wetsuits, instead of stinger suits, which was great as we get a bit cold in the water, even though the water is alot warmer than elsewhere in Australia. We definitely suggest getting your own mask and fins as a minimum before coming on the boat, as you can dive up to 4 times a day and the blisters come on quickly, and the mask is less likely to leak if it's your own. Cannot thank everyone enough for the most incredible trip! We cannot wait to get back up to far north QLD again to get back onto Reef Encounter.

cintia perozza 2 years ago

Fantastic experience: I had the best time diving. Definitely one of the best experiences I have had in Australia. I went for 2D and 1N trip and it exceeded all expectations. I did 6 dives in total and 1 was nightly. I had never dived at night and it was one of the best experiences of my life, I saw so many sharks and turtles. The crew are the best, they provided me with a great stay on the boat and incredible dives in the Great Barrier Reef. I will definitely be back to take my advanced diving course with them. Thank you so much guys.

Bart Klinkenberg 3 years ago

Fantastic experience: Awsome experience! We went for a 2day 1night trip with 6 Dives. One of these Dives was a night dive. Your journey starts in the Cairns marina where they welcome you one one of their vessels. Right after departure they serve you a bacon and egg roll just freshly cooked on the top deck. It takes roughly an hour and a half to make the trip to the Reef Encounter boat. Your bags and shoes will be transported by the staff to the next vessel. Once you come aboard the staff will give you a greeting and the safety briefings will start (only 3). After these briefings you'll be shown to your room and they will hand out your gear. Depending on what you have chosen they will give you instructions on what to do and expect. We went for certified dives without a guide and all we needed to know was explained in a professional yet very pleasant way. On board all meals are provided and so is water and other things like: fruit, sea sickness pills, instant coffee, Milo chocolate milk and tea. All other things have to be purchased like a cola or sunkist. We had good reasonably good conditions during our time and visibility was around 15m. We saw sharks, turtles, sting rays and a lot more. The rest is up to you find out and see! I would definitely recommend this trip to any who likes diving and likes the company of nice, enthusiastic and professional people (the staff) Thanks again and perhaps we'll see you next time.

Bailey Nassau 3 years ago

Fantastic experience: The staff on this trip were fantastic. I get motion sick and we ended up in bad weather, making it a bit of a rough trip for me. The crew did absolutely everything they could to help, letting us change rooms and giving me different food for an upset stomach. Their knowledge of the dive sites is second to none and the photos were incredible. There were so many opportunities to dive and snorkel, including night diving with the sharks. We’ll be back next time we’re in cairns!

Thomas Niel 3 years ago

Fantastic experience: Positive: Professionalism , Quality , Value

Sofie van Knippenberg 4 years ago

Fantastic experience: The best boat to explore the Great Barrier Reef! Had an amazing time and did some of my best dives ever with them. The staff are all super friendly, the food is delicious and there is a photographer on board who snaps the most beautiful under water pictures. Would 10000% recommend! See more on my Instagram @travelsofsof_

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