Holiday on the Great Barrier Reef with Kids
Green Island Snorkeling Photo Credit: Queensland.com
The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most fantastic destinations in the entire world. If you are vacationing in Australia with kids, no need to miss one of the wonders of the natural world because you aren’t sure if there are things to do with your kids. In fact, there is plenty to see and do on the Great Barrier Reef with your kids so that everyone can be safe and have a blast. Here are some memorable and amazing adventures for the whole family on the Great Barrier Reef.
Daydream Island is part of the Whitsunday Islands right in the heart of The Great Barrier Reef. Known for some of the whitest sand beaches in the world. The entire island is home to the Daydream Island Resort. The resort has a number of different activities for families with children. The highlight of Daydream Island though is the resort’s man-made outdoor aquarium called The Living Reef. Here, you can experience a sampling of the Great Barrier Reef in a shallow, controlled environment. Guests can wade in the reef with the stingrays, sea turtles, baby sharks, clown fish, barramundi and 100+ other species of marine life that live in the lagoon. Plus, there are more than 60 different species of corals so you can experience some of the diversity present in the reef.
Reef Magic is a great excursion you can take from Cairns. Board one of the fast catamarans to the Marine World Outer Reef activity platform. The platform is moored next to the reef. Snorkelling supplies and suits are provided. You can go on a guided snorkel tour with a marine biologist. If you don’t want to swim, the platform has an underwater reef viewing observatory or you can opt for a semi-submersible tour, glass bottom boat ride, or even a scenic helicopter flight.
Reef HQ Aquarium
The Reef HQ Great Barrier Reef Aquarium is the world’s largest living coral reef aquarium. It also houses the Australian Government’s national education centre for the Great Barrier Reef. The aquarium features an underwater viewing tunnel, a Turtle Hospital, and various exhibits and shows. It is located in Townsville.
Fitzroy Island is an ideal Great Barrier Reef for families with children. It is in close proximity to the mainland near Cairns which makes for easy access and a quick trip. Once you arrive on the island, there are plenty of family friendly activities. You can snorkel right from the beach and the calm and shallow waters with a fringing reef. There is an ocean trampoline for fun as well as a turtle rehabilitation centre. From the island, you can hire a kayak or charter a glass-bottom boat tour.
Green Island is another island destination off of Cairns that is ideal for families with young children. The waters around the island are shallow and perfect for paddling around and learning to snorkel in a calm and shallow environment. The island has a fringing reef right off of the beach, so you will still get to experience the reef even in the shallow waters. There is a glass bottom boat tour available from the island and also kids 12 and older can try the Seawalker helmet dive. On the island is the Marineland Melanesia. It is a crocodile farm and marine life habitat that you can explore.
Mossman River Gorge Photo Credit: Wikipedia
In addition to the Great Barrier Reef excursions and island getaways we’ve mentioned, don’t forget about the fun things to do in each of the port cities along the Queensland coast. You can hire a car from Budget Rent a Car and explore the different kid friendly destinations like the Daintree Rainforest, the Mossman River Gorge, the Rainforest Habitat Wildlife Sanctuary, Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures, the Kuranda Rainforest, the Cairns Tropical Zoo, Cairns Zoom, and the Billabong Sanctuary.