Mike Ball Dive CNS SYD 7N [DiveMB10]

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Great Barrier Reef, Australia Mike Ball Dive, Australia 13 Days / 12 Nights - Cairns, Live-Aboard Diving Expedition and Sydney

This itinerary departs from the USA on Monday evening. Stay in Cairns for one night before you board the diving vessel the next evening (Thursday). After disembarking from the dive vessel stay in Cairns for one more night then travel to Sydney for 3 nights. Your arrival day back into the USA will be on Monday morning.

Australia's north eastern town of tropical Cairns is the gateway for two of the world's greatest diving icons, the Great Barrier Reef and the Coral Sea.

The dive vessel departs Cairns 7:00 pm Thursday and returns 8:00 am the following Thursday. You will be transferred to and from your accommodation in Cairns.

Travel Package Features

[DiveMB10] Mike Ball Dive CNS SYD 7N
  • Accommodation - Cairns (1 Night), Live-Aboard Diving Expedition (7 Nights), Cairns (1 Night), Sydney (2 Nights)
  • International Flights - Los Angeles to Cairns (via Sydney), Sydney to Los Angeles
  • Australian Domestic Flights - Cairns to Sydney
  • Shuttle Transfers - Cairns Airport to Accommodation (return), Cairns Accommodation to Live-Aboard Dive Boat (return), Sydney Airport to Accommodation (return)
  • All Other Day Tours are Optional and not included
  • Visa Issuance for entry into Australia (US$15.00 per person)
  • F.I.T. (Free & Independent Travel, i.e. this is not an Organized Group Tour)
  • All Taxes and Fuel Levies (Except where noted)
  • Itinerary is flexible and can be tailored to suit your needs.

Travel Package Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 - International Flight - Los Angeles to Cairns
From USA to Australia Shortly after departing Los Angeles you will be served dinner and you will be given breakfast before landing.

Relax, watch some movies, and try to get some sleep!


Please confirm with the airlines at Check-in that they have all your Frequent Flyer information on record.
Day 2 - Shuttle Transfer Cairns Airport to Accommodation
Cairns, Australia Travel by shuttle from the Cairns Airport to your vacation accommodation in Cairns, Australia.

Departures occur approximately 30 minutes after aircraft arrival-time for domestic flights. For international flights this will be considerably longer because of customs and other formalities.

Luggage restrictions apply as per standard economy Australian domestic flights of 2 standard bags under 30kg (66 lbs) per passenger. Excess baggage is AUD$5.00 per bag payable on board. If traveling with excess baggage please advise the shuttle company upon reservation confirmation so appropriate trailer size is available.
Days 2 to 3 - 1 Night Accommodation in Cairns
Cairns, Australia Travel to your accommodation Cairns, Australia, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 1 night.

Your 4 Star vacation accommodation is located on the waterfront, overlooking Trinity Bay and the extensive parklands of Cairns, Australia. Elegantly appointed rooms with private balconies offer panoramic views to the Coral Sea or to Australia's majestic rainforest clad mountains. The hotel facilities include a restaurant, wine bar, and swimming pool. Travel and experience Australia's nature and culture by visiting the Great Barrier Reef or Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. Or travel along Captain Cook Highway and visit picturesque Mossman Gorge.
Days 3 to 10 - 8 Days Live-Aboard Diving Expedition
The azure and fathomless water of the Coral Sea is a playground for sharks and big fish action in exceptional visibility. Huge soft coral trees, sea fans, and otherworldly marine life will impress on this 5-night Coral Sea & Cod Hole Expedition aboard the award-winning <i>Spoilsport</i> vessel. Experience up to 18 dives in the Coral Sea with superb Great Barrier Reef marine biodiversity.

<h3>Day 1: Check-in and Departure </h3>
Check in and make your way to Hemingway's Brewery Cairns Wharf to meet your fellow passengers and prepare to board <i>Spoilsport.</i> Enjoy a glass of champagne and light snacks while your Trip Director provides a full briefing. Depart Cairns and begin your Coral Sea Safari!

<h3>Day 2: Coral Sea - Bougainville Reef</h3>
Start your day with a light breakfast before a briefing, then don on your gear and dive into the waters of the Coral Sea. Explore the wondrous sights at Bougainville Reef, where the Crystal Plateau reef top descends to a spectacular terrace of hard corals at 20-30m before edging over into an abyss hundreds of meters deep. Sea fans and soft corals adorn the reef wall where (friendly) sharks also patrol.

<h3>Days 3 & 4: Coral Sea - Osprey Reef</h3>
Cruise 100 miles overnight to Osprey Reef in the Coral Sea. This site never disappoints with exciting fish action alongside colorful gorgonian fans, whips and soft corals. Resident barracuda and schooling big eye trevally make for great photo opportunities, and keep an eye out for cruising hammerheads out in the blue. At North Horn, you'll watch a controlled shark feed with 10-30 gray reef, white-tip, and other friendly sharks. Then, enjoy a maze of huge towering bommies at Admiralty Anchor, home to plenty of fish and a delight to explore.

<h3>Day 5: Great Barrier Reef - Lizard Island & Ribbon Reefs</h3>
Enjoy diving at Ribbon Reefs before mooring off Lizard Island for the evening. The potato cod grouper at the Cod Hole are a highlight, however it is the rich biodiversity of fish species and coral that make this section of the Great Barrier Reef so incredible. Mid expedition you'll disembark at Lizard Island, where you will have a few hours to relax. Step back in time at the ruins of Mrs. Watsons Cottage, or walk through the mangrove swamp on a boardwalk where a stroll up Chinaman’s Ridge yields magnificent views of the island and reefs below.

<h3>Day 6: Great Barrier Reef - Ribbon Reefs</h3>
Circumnavigate renowned dive sites at Ribbon Reefs including Pixie Pinnacle and Lighthouse Bommie, shrouded in fusilier baitfish. Fluorescent purple and orange anthias attract predatory fish to these photogenic sites. Majestic Minke whales are seen here in June and July. Rising from 80 meters the pinnacle of Andy's Postcard is encrusted in corals, lion fish, nudibranchs, octopus, schooling trevally and barracuda. See spectacular giant clams at Clam Beds as well as caves, canyons and coral encrusted bommies awaiting exploration. Sheer walls covered in whip corals and sea fans brim the natural amphitheater of Vertical Gardens. Marine life varies from the many colorful nudibranchs to large schooling bump head parrotfish.

<h3>Day 7: Ribbon Reefs</h3>
Explore even more incredible underwater waters of Ribbon Reefs at Coral Kingdom and Steve's Bommie. Spiral majestic coral pinnacles teeming with diverse marine life. Bump headed parrotfish and inquisitive barracuda cruise the site along with schools of other reef fish, gliding above vast beds of staghorn and colorful giant clams. At Steve's Bommie, hunt out such creatures as stonefish, scorpionfish, octopus, clown anemone fish and turtles, not to mention the many schools of fish that call this place home.

<h3>Day 8: Dock</h3>
Wake up with a light breakfast before disembarking at Cairns, where courtesy transfers await to take you to your next destination.

<b>Operates</b>
Departs every Thursday.

<b>Need to Know</b>
If weather forces an itinerary change, the crew will divert to the best, ‘safe, accessible sites’ to ensure you get the best scuba diving available. The Coral Sea may not be accessible in strong winds.

Hire gear is available at additional expense, however it is recommended to bring your own wetsuit, mask, snorkel, and fins.

Divers who have completed less than 15 dives, less than 5 ocean dives or less than 5 dives in the last 12 months are required to complete a complimentary onboard orientation dive. In addition, divers over 65 years old, who have completed less than 50 dives are required to complete the complimentary onboard orientation dive.

Diver Health: If you have a medical condition or are currently taking prescription medication, you will need a medical clearance. For further details refer to our Diver Information form or contact our Reservations team.

Room Types Available are: Premium - queen or double bed, private bathroom, ocean views. Standard - twin beds, private bathroom, ocean views. Club - twin bunk beds, private bathroom, no ocean view. Budget - twin bunk beds, share bathroom, no ocean view.

<b>Note: Itinerary subject to change. Specific marine life sighting cannot be guaranteed.</b>
Days 10 to 11 - 1 Night Accommodation in Cairns
Cairns, Australia Travel to your accommodation Cairns, Australia, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 1 night.

Your 4 Star vacation accommodation is located on the waterfront, overlooking Trinity Bay and the extensive parklands of Cairns, Australia. Elegantly appointed rooms with private balconies offer panoramic views to the Coral Sea or to Australia's majestic rainforest clad mountains. The hotel facilities include a restaurant, wine bar, and swimming pool. Travel and experience Australia's nature and culture by visiting the Great Barrier Reef or Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. Or travel along Captain Cook Highway and visit picturesque Mossman Gorge.
Day 11 - Shuttle Transfer Cairns Accommodation to Airport
Travel by shuttle from your Cairns vacation accommodation to the Airport in Cairns, Australia.

Luggage restrictions apply as per standard economy Australian domestic flights of 2 standard bags under 30kg (66 lbs) per passenger. Excess baggage is AUD$5.00 per bag payable on board. If traveling with excess baggage please advise the shuttle company upon reservation confirmation so appropriate trailer size is available.
Day 11 cont - Australian Domestic Flight - Cairns to Sydney
Travel within Australia by domestic air from Cairns to Sydney.

Day 11 cont - Shuttle Transfer Sydney Airport to Accommodation
Sydney, Australia Travel by shuttle from the Airport to your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia.

Travel via shuttle to your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia.
Days 11 to 13 - 2 Nights Accommodation in Sydney
Travel to your accommodation in Sydney, Australia, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 2 nights in your studio room apartment.

Just 30 minutes from Sydney Airport, your accommodation is conveniently located between Darling Harbour and the Sydney CBD.

The friendly staff at your accommodation can attend to your every need with 24 hour guest reception. Enjoy a scrumptious breakfast at their signature restaurant.

Relax in a stylish and comfortable haven whilst being in close proximity to shopping at Westfield's Pitt St Mall and Darling Harbour. Don't forget to take a stroll down Pitt St towards Circular Quay to take in more of Sydney's world famous sites- like the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Day 12 - Free Day to Explore Sydney
Sydney, Australia With Sydney at your fingertips, take the chance to explore the Darling Harbour area at your leisure, which is a modern collection of Shopping Malls, Parkland, Restaurants and Harbour Front activities.

Walk to Circular Quay and catch a ferry to our wonderful harbour-side Taronga Park Zoo, or take the 30 minute ferry ride to Manly Beach, Sydney's premier beach resort. Here you can enjoy the laid back beach culture as well as many festivals and events. If you prefer to stay closer to downtown Sydney, Bondi Beach is approximately a 10 minute train ride and is one of Australia's most famous and iconic beaches. Save some time to take a beach walk from Bondi Beach to Bronte Beach, it's known to be a true highlight. If visiting on a weekend then go to the Rocks Market and shop for local Arts, Crafts & unique Australian Souvenirs.
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Opera House Tour
This inspiring tour provides a once in a lifetime opportunity to venture inside one of the world's most recognised global landmarks.

<a href="//youtu.be/C2UPo8f7EpE" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Sydney-Opera-House-Tour-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

This one hour tour outlines the intricate and controversial history of the Sydney Opera House along with details of the unique design of this architectural masterpiece.

You will visit a number of the six performance venues, including the magnificent wood paneled Concert Hall and the Opera Theatre as well as the new Utzon room.

You will also visit the glass enclosed northern foyer areas which boast spectacular views of Sydney Harbour - a perfect photo opportunity.

<b>Operates</b>

Daily.

<b>Need to Know</b>

1 - 11 guests maximum per group. No large bags or luggage accepted. This tour contains approximately 200 steps - low impact.

<b>Times</b>

Departs every hour between 9:00am - 5:00pm.

<b>Inclusions</b>

Guided tour of the Sydney Opera House.
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Bridgeclimb
Reach new heights and climb the famous Harbour Bridge in Sydney!

<a href="//youtu.be/vNBOOE8Lydk" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img class="alignleft" src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Sydney-Harbour-Bridgeclimb-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" /></a>

Achieve exhilaration and personal satisfaction as you climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge. For approximately 3.5 hours you and 11 other eager climbers will join a climb guide and weave through catwalks, climb up ladders and then arrive at the most spectacular point of all - the upper arch climb. The steady incline to the upper arch leaves you free to focus your attention on your Sydney experience, with opportunities for 360 degree views of Sydney, including east to the ocean, west to the mountains and the harbor city surrounds.

It is at this point that you not only have a bird's eye view of the beautiful Sydney Harbour and the city, but have the exhilarating and rewarding experience of reaching the top of the iconic Harbour Bridge.

When you reach the top you will have a sense of achievement you'll remember forever - you've conquered an Australian icon recognized the world over! No other Sydney tourist attraction can give you this feeling of standing at the top of the world, with the harbor spread before you.

All climbers will be issued a complimentary photograph of your climb group.

<b>Operates:</b>
Daily, in all weather conditions (except in cases of extreme weather conditions like electrical storms or high winds).

<b>Need to Know:</b>
- Wear comfortable, enclosed rubber-soled shoes and comfortable clothing;
- Secure lockers will be provided to store your personal belongings;
- No cameras, phones, GoPros or other video and mobile devices are allowed on the climb;
- Children ages 8 - 15 must be accompanied by an adult. Children younger than 8 are not permitted on the climb;
- Maximum of 14 people per group.

<b>Times:</b>
The climb lasts approximately 3.5 hours. Climbs are available at dawn (limited departures), day, twilight or night.

<b>Inclusions:</b>
BridgeClimb cap;
Certificate of Achievement;
A complimentary Climb Group photo.

Photo Credit: BridgeClimb Sydney.
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Blue Mountains Deluxe Day Tour - Full Day
The Blue Mountains Deluxe Day is a real journey into the heart of a unique World Heritage Region. From temperate rainforests to towering sandstone escarpments, you'll see and experience it all. Let the landscape work its wonders and become part of you for a lifetime.

<p></p>Upon departing from the city, you will travel directly to the Blue Mountains and your first stop of the day is at Calmsley Hill Farm a working farm also home to Kangaroo, Emu, Wombat and Koala. Enjoy morning tea and time to wander at leisure.

From Calmsley Hill you will continue to ascend the Blue Mountains via the highway. Visit one of a range of stunning outlooks of the Jamison Valley seeing beautiful vistas. Where possible this will be away from the crowds of tours that visit the mountains each day with other operators, thus you will have the opportunity to enjoy a stress and hurry free environment taking in the views and information imparted by your guide.

Continuing on you will arrive at Eaglehawk Lookout, a remote lookout points away from the crowds for views of the famous 3 Sisters. Whilst the Blue Mountains features so much more than this natural attraction you can't help but admire the unquestionable beauty of this amazing rock formation. The character of the Three Sisters changes throughout the day and throughout the seasons as the sunlight brings out the magnificent colors. Here your guide will discuss the legends behind this famous rock formation and time available for you to take some great photos.

Next you will be taken around the mountain towards the village of Blackheath and our lunch venue the Boiler House Cafe. Here in this relaxed venue with stunning views, you can enjoy a 2-course lunch with tea or coffee. All diets are catered for (excluding Kosher Meals). Please note that beverages can be purchased at your own expense from the Bar.

The afternoon is spent visiting a selection of lookouts. Once you clap your eyes on the view from Govetts Leap you'll know why it's one of the most famous lookouts in Australia. The magnificent waterfall drops a whopping 180m to the base of the cliff. If you're not mesmerized by the dancing waves of water spray, you'll be transfixed by the sweeping views down the valley to the Grose Wilderness.

Then take a brief stop to enjoy a glass of sparkling wine or orange juice at the delightful Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens, where you can enjoy the sweeping views across to Sydney before traveling down the Bells Line of Road to arrive back at your hotel approximately 4:30pm.

<b>Operates</b>

Daily.

<b>Need to Know</b>

This is a specialized small group tour with a maximum group size of 17 passengers.
Minimum of 2 guests required for tour departure.

<b>Times</b>

Pick-up from Sydney CBD hotel between: 7:00am - 7:30am.
Drop-off at Sydney CBD hotel between: 4:30pm - 5:00pm.
 
<b>Inclusions</b>

- Professional Guide
- Hotel pickup & drop off from Sydney CBD
- Small group touring
- Morning tea
- National Park Fees
- 2-Course Lunch (Beverages with meals are not included)
- Glass of Sparkling Wine
- Mt Tomah visit

<b>Upgrades</b>

Private Touring
Day 14 - Shuttle Transfer Sydney Accommodation to Airport
Sydney, Australia Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia, to the Airport.

Day 14 cont - International Flight - Sydney to Los Angeles
From Australia to USA Depart Sydney from the International Airport and fly to Los Angeles. Note: You will be traveling back across the International Date line so you will gain a day. You actually arrive in the USA on the same day you leave Australia.

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[DiveMB10] Mike Ball Dive CNS SYD 7N

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