If have 5 days in Sydney is trip to GBR possible?

Aug 8th, 2007, 08:17 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2003
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If have 5 days in Sydney is trip to GBR possible?

I may be in Sydney in September for work. I will have 5 days (after work is done) to do whatever I want. I have never been to Australia and have perused quite a few posts about Sydney and the Great Barrier Reef, etc. I can't seem to figure out how to fit in snorkeling somewhere at GBR even if for one day during that trip. Is it possible to drive/take flights/catch boat in one day or would I have to spend a night in one of the areas near where the boat tours do the pickups? I understand that I would be taking away from my time in Sydney but would be depressed if I was so close to the GBR and couldn't see it (not knowing if/when I'll have the chance to return to Australia).

CajunStorm is offline  
Aug 8th, 2007, 12:38 PM
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Hi Cajun!

Yes, it is do-able - it's a 3 hr. flight from Sydney to Cairns, and depending on how ambitious you are and flight availability, you could fly into Cairns, take the shuttle to your hotel and walk to the Maria to meet up with your boat.

It would be a shame though not to have a rainforest experience as well while you're in this part of Australia. You could fly into Cairns, take the shuttle to Port Douglas and do both the reef & rainforest from there.

Just depends on the timing, flights available and how you want to split your time.

Hope this is helpful!


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wlzmatilida is offline  
Aug 8th, 2007, 04:22 PM
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To maximise your time on the reef versus travel time consider...

Get a cheap morning flight from sydney to the fraser coast
fly to lady elliot with seair
leave sydney in the morning and be on the reef by lunchtime.
could be whales up there at that time
stay overnight on lady elliot and be back in sydney late the next night
johhj_au is offline  
Aug 8th, 2007, 06:25 PM
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Hi Johnj,

I was just at Lady Elliot last month, and they were about to re-do their kitchen, so for 3 weeks, it would only be BBQ meals. Frankly, the kitchen / lunch buffet was dismal, VERY dismal!And while they were saying this would be a "hardship" for the changeover, I was thinking: "it would have to be better than offered here".

As people are paying for their meals, costed into the price, as there's no other choice, as you're a captive audience, so to speak, I don't think you're getting value for your money in that respect.

That said, the snorkelling was the most amazing I've ever experienced.


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wlzmatilida is offline  
Aug 8th, 2007, 08:38 PM
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Interesting Melodie...
Traditionally lady elliot has been the budget qld coral cay...leaving aside camping on lady musgrave...so if one wanted higher levels of accommodation and food one would head for Heron.However lady elliot is very convenient with flights in,and the upgrading of fraser coast airport.

Are they trying to reposition the place?

I think the snorkelling in the cappricornia area of the GBR is as good as anywhere on the GBR.

How was the weather?

How were the birds?

Where did you fly in from?
johhj_au is offline  
Aug 9th, 2007, 01:42 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
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In concert with some other posters, I would fly to an reef island for few days...Lady Elliot, Heron or Lizard. Heron is in the middle cost-wise, a definite step up or two from Lady E. in terms of food/accommodation. Snorkeling off Heron is fantastic - probably very similar to that at Lady E., being in the same island group. Getting to Heron will require either a catamaran trip or helicopter ride from Gladstone.
RalphR is offline  
Aug 9th, 2007, 06:50 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,283

admittedly, I am a "foodie". My family was in the restaurant business, but on a low scale..nothing fancy. I'm not a snob, and one of my favorite meals in Oz, was at pub in the middle of nowhere with fantastic fish and chips, but the food at Lady Elliot was, as said..dismal.

They had a sad buffet consisting of prawns, on ice, and they were STUCK to the bottom of the pan because they were frozen to it. A pathetic salad with limp looking greens; a noodle dish that was overcooked, had been sitting there for who knows how long - when one of the staff members wanted some, because it was empty, she had to wait about 20 minutes to get her food. A beef stew and I think that was about it.

The accommodations are basic, and that's fine, because people going there care about the diving/snorkelling. I could live with that, no problem. but if you're paying for meals into the cost, and this is what they offer, it's just pathetic.

I flew in from Brisbane, and out to Gladstone.


wlzmatilida is offline  
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