No stay in Cairns is complete without a trip to beautiful Green Island. Located in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, this island paradise is just a short 45-minute catamaran ride away. This 6,000-year-old rainforest-covered coral cay is perfect for day-trippers or those who choose a more extended stay at the island’s luxurious eco-friendly resort. Choose to while away the day on this tropical national park island your way.
Laze on the pristine white sands, snorkel or dive in the surrounding coral gardens, or walk the Green Island nature trails and be amazed by colourful birdlife in the unique rainforest. Opt for kayaking, a glass-bottom boat tour, or a scenic helicopter flight. Then round your day off with a cocktail by the pool in this magical location.
Getting to Green Island is simple, with ferries departing multiple times a day to this pristine island getaway. Visitors can choose to book a ferry passage only or a Green Island tour package. Most Green Island tours include transfers and the glass bottom boat experience or Green Island snorkelling. Book your Green Island half-day tours for the morning or afternoon; however, the morning is recommended for keen divers. Green Island full-day tours allow visitors to make the most of this island paradise and its many activities. No matter what passage you book, day-trippers to the island have access to the resort’s pool, showers, toilets, and three food outlets.
There are plenty of Green Island attractions for those not keen on getting wet. Take a guided rainforest walk, visit the Marineland Melanesia, or book in for some pampering at the spa. Non-swimmers who still want to dip a toe and see the reef underwater can try Seawalker helmet diving to walk amongst the coral without getting their hair wet.
Green Island Resort is an innovative leader in sustainable practices. It converts its food waste into a nutrient-rich organic fertiliser, glass bottle waste into sand, and uses solar energy to power the resort. It's all about treading lightly and giving back to nature at Green Island.
You can visit Green Island any time of year and swim no matter the season. The water in winter rarely drops below 22 degrees, and in summer, it can hit a balmy 29. Although rare, swimmers should be careful of stingers in summer and consider bringing or hiring a stinger suit, and while towels are available on the island, day-trippers are advised to bring their own as supply may run short.
As Green Island is part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, it offers a diverse array of marine life for visitors to explore and observe. The coral reefs are home to a variety of colourful coral species, such as staghorn coral, brain coral, and coral bommies. They’re also teeming with a wide range of tropical fish species, including parrotfish, clownfish, angelfish, butterflyfish, wrasses, and damselfish. Larger marine animals to look out for include turtles, stingrays, and reef sharks.
The ferry journey from Cairns to Green Island typically takes around 45 minutes. Green Island is on the inner Great Barrier Reef, which means that the journey is less rough than travelling to the more exposed outer reef. Irrespective, seasickness medication is recommended for those who struggle with their sea legs.
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