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Getting to the Great Barrier Reef

Elvis Elvis

“G’Day!”…..That’s one Aussie way of welcoming you. Making ‘Getting there’ and looking after you once you are there, easy, is another. Because if we don’t look after you with reliable, safe and convenient transport, we probably won’t see you back!

Getting there is easy, once you know how. But to a first time traveller there are a few pifalls you should be aware of.

If you are travelling to the Queensland’s State Capital, Brisbane, then there’s no problem, as many of the world carriers, fly in and out of Brisbane from all over the world. Depending on what kind of itinerary you are planning, Brisbane may be an excellent starting point.

The three main destinations when heading to the Great Barrier Reef, especially by plane, are, Cairns, for all the magnificent and world famous islands and attractions in that part of Queensland, such as the Kuranda Scenic Railroad, Skyrail and Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park or further south of Cairns, to Proserpine and Hamilton Island airports, which service most of the islands in the area known as the ‘Whitsundays’ Group of islands.

Getting there is made easier, once you have chosen your destination with the aid of a map of the Great Barrier Reef If you are arriving by an International flight, you will need to check if your carrier flies directly into Cairns.

Most carriers do, but if not you may have to transfer to Cairns from Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne etc. presuming you want to travel to that particular part of the Great Barrier Reef.

Remember the Great Barrier Reef is 2300kms long.

Getting to the Great Barrier Reef

And, an important part here, it is some 1700kms from Brisbane to Cairns, and while getting there is made easy with some very good transport all around Queensland, once you get to your destination at the Great Barrier Reef, you will discover helicopter and seaplane flights to hasten your travel as well as high speed catamans and launches.

Also on the subject of distances, it should be mentioned it is 1215kms (760miles) from Brisbane to the Whitsunday Islands, Hamilton Island and Proserpine Airports.

And approx. 500kms from the Whitsundays to Cairns, and you should keep this in mind to make getting there as convenient as possible.

One very convenient way of getting to Bedarra and Dunk Islands, from Cairns is with North Queensland Holiday Bus & Coach Transfers.

A friendly air conditioned coach transfer service door to door for holiday makers to Cairns, Mission Beach, Dunk Island, Bedarra Island, Palm Cove, Port Douglas and Silky Oaks.

You can fly direct to Hamilton Island from Brisbane, Sydney etc. (and stay there) or take a high speed catamaran to most of the Whitsunday Islands, from Hamilton Island Airport.

Or you can arrive at Proserpine Airport on the mainland and travel by bus to Shute Harbour (15kms) and then on by boat to the island of your choice in the Whitsundays.

Please note: There are other islands of the reef, such as Great Keppel, Heron Island, Wilson Island, Lady Elliot and Lady Musgrave Islands, which are even further south and therefore closer to Brisbane.

These islands may be better served by flights into either Bundaberg, (home of the famous Bundaberg Rum distillery) Gladstone or Rockhampton Airports. Check when making your booking inquiries.

The Tilt Train, (Queensland Rails latest and greatest high speed train service) along with other train and very good bus services, are other ways to travel to Cairns, with stops at all major points along the way.

The Tilt Train takes 24hrs 55mins for the Journey from Brisbane to Cairns,(Queenslands a big place) but you will enjoy the highest levels of comfort, to ensure a relaxing and most pleasant journey. There’s personal entertainment with a selection of 12 channels of music and movies to enjoy.

Feeling hungry! The Club Car is the place for a variety of snacks or there’s an in-seat dining service.

So as you can see, getting there is no problem at all if you plan your vacation carefully and remember we are always here to help you with any questions that you don’t find answers to here, and hopefully we can make getting there even easier for you.

There are many reasons to make Brisbane your first port of call, for example, some people may want to visit the home of  Steve Irwin.

His crocodile themed park, called Australia Zoo, is located at the foot of the Glass House Mountains, at Beerwah (about 80ks north of Brisbane)

And I’m sure you would have heard of the famous Surfers Paradise, at Brisbanes Gold Coast.

Well that is only 80kms south of Brisbane and is also a great playground for young and old, with magnificent golden beaches, surf and attractions such as the Casino, the Currumbin Bird Sanctuary, Seaworld, Warner Bros. Movie World, Dreamworld and Wet’n'Wild. and much more!

I guess finding out for yourself is half the pleasure, so we had better leave something for you to discover.

Can’t you just feel the excitement building.

We haven’t even begun to tell you of all the wonderful things to see and do in this part of the world.

Whether it’s the Great Barrier Reef, the Tropical Rainforests, the Cities or the Outback, our great state has a way of getting you there and treating you to a fantastic time.

See ya later mate! (an Aussie farewell).