I recently guided U.S clients on a diving trip to Lizard Island, a gem in the Northern Section of the Great Barrier Reef, in Australia’s Tropical North Queensland. The clients have dived many of the best locations on the planet over the past 30 years and diving with the resident family of 4ft long Potato Cod at The Cod Hole on Ribbon Reef 10 was on their bucket list. Despite the reef being extensively damaged by cyclone Ita in 2014, it did not disappoint!
It was encouraging to observe the vegetation regenerating on the island after this wet season; it is looking stunning as always. The coral reefs off the beach at Anchor Bay are a snorkelers delight as there are no currents and the water is only 6-10 ft in depth, making it accessible to all levels of swimmer/snorkelers.
We observed numerous species of fish and marine life; Green Turtles, Black Tipped Reef Sharks, blue spotted stingrays, Coral Trout, Napoleon Wrasse and masses of smaller fish species. Both hard and soft corals, in all colours of the rainbow, were in a very healthy state. The Giant Clams, for which the island is famous, also offered a kaleidoscope of colours and sizes. Snorkelling over them is mesmerising and needs to be on everyone’s Bucket List when visiting the Great Barrier Reef.
There is a lot of press about the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) dying. It is indeed experiencing some coral bleaching from warm ocean temperatures of the previous two summers. Something to keep in perspective is the enormity of the GBR. If it was located on the East Coast of the USA it would extend all the way from Boston to Key West! It is comprised of thousands of individual reefs and hundreds of islands and sand cays stretching 1,700 miles along the Queensland coast. It truly is one of Mother Nature’s spectacles and worthy of more than one visit in a lifetime.
Watch the video of this amazing Australian diving adventure.
Pedro O’ Connor welcomes the opportunity to show his ‘coral garden backyard’, in and around the Great Barrier Reef, where he has been fortunate to grow up.
Please email Pedro if you are interested in this journey of a lifetime.