According to one of the guide books, if it had been a clear day and if we had looked carefully, then it would have been just about possible to see The Barrier Reef from our Skyline gondola as we came to the last half mile onto the flat ground that surrounds Cairns. All that we could see was mountains and water.
As it happened it didn’t matter too much as we had a much closer look at The Barrier Reef today.
This meant an early morning start to get our boat out of Cairns harbour. We were warned that it would be bumpy as we pulled out into the open sea so we forced fed ourselves sea-sickness pills which seemed to do the trick.
It took a good hour of our bouncing over the swell for us to get to our first stop. There was then a rush to pull on wet and clingy black stinger suits, wet shoes, snorkel and mask before our feet were pushed hard into a pair flippers and we were in the water.
On the surface there was a strong wind and choppy sea but as soon as we put our faces under the water all that went away and we were left with the sound of our breathing through the plastic pipe of the snorkel and a slowly unfolding world beneath of made up of myriad fish and corals that seemed to take on colours that no one had thought of before.