Never dived before? Well now you can, without any previous experience. Join our caring Dive Instructor and let them take you into the wonder waters of the Great Barrier Reef. Diving is fun and not as difficult as you may imagine, after a brief theory lesson and practicing some under water skills, you are ready to begin.
To make the dive as undemanding and enjoyable as possible, the first dive is in the tranquil waters at Michaelmas Cay.
With the assistance of your attentive instructor you are taken carefully down to a comfortable depth of 5 metres.
Deep enough to be enthralling but at the same time shallow enough not to be daunting, the balance is just right.
Imagine the thrill as you breathe underwater for the first time! This alone is an exhilarating experience and the first activity you do is to go to the soft sandy bottom to stop and simply look around, enjoy being underwater, take in the view, marvel that the surface and snorkellers are now 5 metres above you and that you can remain down here.
It is now that you may experience an exciting “rush”, so your instructor will give you a short period to become accustomed to the adventure of diving before gently taking you to see the first reef animal, a nearby giant clam.
Diving is very different to snorkelling, you can stay underwater for over 30 minutes and you are able observe the fascinating reef creatures in relaxed detail.
But most notably the reef fish will react to you more curiously as you are now below them, they feel less threatened. Don’t be surprised to find yourself surrounded by these small, colourful, inquisitive swimmers, it can be quite a shock if they see their reflection in your mask, prepare for a close encounter!
You will be in small group with other beginner divers and your instructor will carefully guide you through this maze of coral. The reef is out of the ordinary to anything you may have seen and there is so much to see so close to the Seastar.
An area very popular with certified divers.
For an additional fee you may try a second dive here at Hastings Reef.
Having just completed a dive at Michaelmas, incredibly, even with such brief experience, diving skills gained on that dive go to make you more capable and typically this dive can be up to 10 minutes longer.
Hastings is an outer reef and a very different reef system to that of Michaelmas, the water is deeper; the fish larger, there are larger schools of small fish, huge coral canyons and enormous corals over 400 years old. All set in a unique coral structure with caves, trenches, valleys and crevasses. At times you seem to be flying as the coral wall towers over you.
The confidence gained on the first dive enables you to tackle this reef.
This opportunity should not be missed.
Departing from the rear of the Seastar you follow the descent line down to a comfortable depth of 5 metres, the mooring blocks are literally adjacent to the first “bommie” a distinctive type of coral growth. From here your guide will show through what is a maze of coral (it takes several weeks for the Dive Masters to fully learn and understand this area) and don’t be surprised to see tiny reef sharks, anemone families, caves of small fish, painted crayfish (lobster), turtles, rays and cute epaulette sharks, just to name a few.
You start from the Seastar, dive around and through the corals, returning to the boat at the completion of the dive.
There are many different dive trails that can be taken from this one location and there is ample time to complete 2 full dives should you choose.
Those experienced divers can choose to be taken to the “Wild Side” this is a one way dive, you enter the water from the dive tender and make a dive returning to the Seastar. There are rays, sharks, schools of thousands of small reef fish, lion fish, puffer fish, live conch shells, enormous giant clams and not to forget the walls of coral.
For the recently qualified Certified Diver the Seastar lagoon and fish bowl dive is remarkably safe and straightforward, you dive along the reef wall and into the reef. Very different to snorkelling at Michalemas it is the larger fish and initially captures your attention but then you become aware of the more subtle differences, the way the corals are growing, the larger schools of fish and everything seems superior.
If you feel confident after this dive, you may request to attempt a second more challenging dive, perhaps even a "Wild Side" dive.
Before booking an introductory Dive or Certified Dive please note that a history of certain medical conditions and the taking of prescribed drugs may preclude a guest from SCUBA diving unless a current Queensland Diving Medical Certificate issued by a diving doctor can be shown to the diving instructor. All divers are subject to the medical questionnaire on board the vessel before diving and their fitness to dive will be assessed by the dive instructor of the day.