The far northern Ribbon Reefs are some of the most pristine, remote and untouched reefs on the Great Barrier Reef. Due to their distance from Cairns, a liveaboard trip to the Ribbon Reefs is a minimum of 3 to 4 nights (includes scenic flight between Cairns and Lizard Island) and maximum of 7 nights (entire trip spent on the boat). The Ribbons are home to some of Australia’s best dive sites, including but not limited to the Cod Hole, Steve’s Bommie and Lighthouse Bommie. The boats and dive operators who visit here are professional and these trips will create memories to last a lifetime. The Ribbon Reefs are the pinnacle of dive sites on the Great Barrier Reef.
Mike Ball Dive Expeditions is all about the diving. This trip offers dive freedom and you can tailor your expedition to suit your certification and experience level. There’s an open dive deck, which means you can dive when and for how long suits you and your dive buddy. There’s even the chance for solo diving, if you have the certification, experience and equipment to do it. In the Ribbon Reefs, dive depth is generally 8-35m. It’s open ocean diving at some amazing sites, including pinnacles, bommies and swim throughs. There’s the option to extend your diving qualifications with an on-board course. The number of scuba dives available depends on your length of stay and package booked. You will need to bring your certification card.
Hire of Dive equipment – $44.00 per day full gear hire
PADI Advanced Dive Course
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority requires the operator to collect an Environmental Management Charge of $7.00 per day spent on the Great Barrier Reef. This amount will be added to your bar bill at the end of your expedition.
2020 Departure dates: 10 September | 8 October | 5 November | 10 December
2021 Departure dates: 7, 21 December | 11 February | 11 March
4 Nights / 13 Dives.
Sample itinerary, subject to change based on conditions.
Check in at our office (3 Abbott St, Cairns) between 8:30 am and 4:00 pm.
From 4:30 pm: Make your own way to Hemingway’s Brewery Cairns Wharf (200m from MBDE office) to meet your fellow passengers. Please note that dinner is not provided on the first evening so you may wish to eat before boarding.
5:50 pm: Our crew will lead you from Hemingway’s Brewery Cairns Wharf to board Spoilsport. Enjoy a glass of champagne and light snacks while your Trip Director provides a full briefing.
6:00 pm: Spoilsport departs Cairns.
Time to organise any rental equipment and put your dive gear together on the dive deck.
Friday: (4 dives + night dive) This is a sample of a ‘typical day’, however exact times may vary to optimise the prevailing weather conditions on the day.
6:30 am: Wake up call, light breakfast available in dining room
7:00 am: Dive brief & diving commences
9:00 am: Full cooked Breakfast
10:30 am: Dive brief & diving. “Open decks” accommodate 1-2 dives either am or pm
2:00 pm: Lunch
3:30 pm: Dive brief & diving
4:30 pm: Afternoon Tea
6:30 pm: Night dive brief & dive
8:00 pm: Dinner
Saturday: (3 dives + night dive)
As per above.
Sunday: (4 dives)
As per above, however all diving is finished by 5pm.
As the sun sets we pour the champagne, lay out the nibbles and get ready for an Aussie BBQ party night. Don’t forget to wear your loudest tropical shirt or dress and sing along to music played by our talented crew.
Overnight cruise to Cairns
7:00 am: Light breakfast
8:00 am: Disembark and courtesy transfer to Cairns inner city hotels, the airport or our office where we can store your luggage until 5pm if you have a later flight.
We recommend that you allow 24 hours between your last dive and your onward flight (all diving is finished by 5pm Monday).
Welcome to Dive in Australia we’re your online scuba diving holiday travel specialist for Australia. We have the knowledge and contacts across the Australian diving industry to make sure you get the best dive holiday to suit your particular needs. Talk to us today to find out what dive trips are available that match your itinerary, budget and current skill levels. You can experience Australia’s ‘must-do’ dive destinations either by day trips or extended liveaboard experiences. Depending on your level of experience and interest, your dive holiday can include all levels of dive education from beginner Open Water Courses through to Dive Master Programs and recommendations to completing your Dive Instructor Career Courses.
We now offer live availability on a number of dive trips. However, with COVID restrictions still in place, some operators have still reduced departures. To avoid disappointment please contact us first before planning to book. All operators featured on our website have safe COVID plans in place, supported by cancellation policies allowing for unexpected border closures.