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Reef and Kuranda

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Reef and Kuranda

We have three maybe four days in Cairns from 9th July this year. Any suggestions on where to stay, quietish location but not too far from everything?

We would like to do a day at the reef not diving, but maybe snorkelling and also a trip to Kuranda. Are those two day packages like Quicksilver's worth it? Is any one company better than another?

How soon should we book as I hear its school holiday time in Australia so it may be busy.

Finally, is there any advantage in booking through an Australian Travel agency rather than here in UK as my Aussie cousin has volunteered to arrange this for me?

Brisbane, Australia
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2,280 posts
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1. Re: Reef and Kuranda

Hi kitkat23

I'm not familiar with Quicksilver's 2 day package, but I imagine it's just their outer reef cruise bundled with a Skyrail trip. I highly doubt there will be any discount on either package. I usually like booking direct with these things because it doesn't take any skill on a part of a travel agent to arrange.

If you're looking for somewhere quiet, but not too far out of the way, look at places like Trinity Beach and Palm Cove. Port Douglas is also a lovely little port town, but a bit further afield.

If you want to really get up close with the reef, I'd try a company that takes a small number of people. Wavelength goes from Port Douglas and only takes 30 people. Other boats like SilverSonic only take 80 people. Quicksilver can take around 450 people on one of their catamarans, so you might feel a bit put off. The good thing about Quicksilver is that they go to an outer reef pontoon, so you're not on a boat all day though.

Hope that helps. :)

Melbourne, Australia
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200 posts
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2. Re: Reef and Kuranda

Hi kitkat23,

I personally would stay at Palm Cove which is about 20 minutes from Cairns City and 40 minutes from Port Douglas ... someone correct me if I am wrong as I have never actually stayed in Cairns only PD or Palm Cove. There is local buses to either destinations and you will feel like you are in paradise!

I'd be more inclined to go with a smaller tour operator rather than Quicksilver. They tend to go to some similar reefs but will keep you out of the crowd. As much as they all do have very high saftey standards, some of the big ones like Quicksilver have ridiculous standard due to the number of people they have on board. I personally would wait until you get there and have a quick shop around in Cairns and get a locals advice it will probably cost you the same but you will have a better time on the reef. I would also suggest snorkelling as you will probably see more than the divers if you are not certified.

One last thing thing take the Skyrail to Kuranda it's a great day out get your photo holding baby koala and if you get time got to the rainforest retreat in Port Douglas it's awesome!


3. Re: Reef and Kuranda

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