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“Magnificent experience.”

Seastar Cruises Reef Day Trips
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Seastar Cruises premium reef cruise combines the outer Great Barrier Reef with a coral cay island. In only 1 1/4 hours the fast air-conditioned Seastar 1 can take you from Cairns to magnificent Michaelmas Cay, the largest of the local uninhabited coral cays. Cruising past Green Island, Upolu cay and Oyster reef Seastar is the first boat to arrive. After an enjoyable time here it is a short 20 minute cruise to the splendid Hastings Reef sitting on the very outer edge. This is where the corals thrive, well out from the coast away from the influence the rivers and streams, adjacent to the clear waters of the Pacific Ocean. You will have 2 1/2 hours at each location. Plenty of time to go snorkeling, do a introductory dive, relax on the beach of the Island or join a tour in the Glass Bottom Boat at Hastings Reef. The day cruise on Seastar inlcudes Morning/Afternoon tea, high quality snorkel equipment, Wetsuit or Lycra suit (depending on the time of year), Glass Bottom Boat Tour, Hot & Cold Buffet Lunch, Reef Interpretation & Guided Snorkel Tours on each spot.
Useful Information: Stairs / lift
Reviewed 18 March 2014

16/3/2014. After researching several other cruises we settled on Seastar Cruises. The reason we chose Seastar is because it travelled to Michaelmas Cay a small sand island kilometres off the coast and then to an outer reef. The boat was smaller and faster with only 35 guests so it is not too crowded at the island when we arrived on our own, in fact the next boat didn't arrive until we were considering lunch. At the island we saw turtles swimming around a great experience. We then travelled to Hastings reef and again we were first on site. At this reef the fish were unbelievable so many different colours and so close you could almost touch them. The reef is at points only about 60 cms deep dropping away to several metres creating drop offs and gullies. It was fantastic fish all around you as you meander around the reef.
The staff all young and vibrant with the patience of a saint were excellent and extremely safety conscience. They had lots of set procedures to ensure all went well while ensuring everyones' safety. There was always a crew member on the roof watching over the swimmers and they knew exacting how many were in the water at any one time. They also initially came out with us to point out all the points of interest. We had plenty of time in the waters, two hours at each spot.
We had a fantastic day.

2  Thank AussieSheds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,594 - 1,598 of 2,345 reviews

Reviewed 16 March 2014

Couldn't have had a better experience! We originally were going to book with another cruise that goes to Michaelmas Cay, but due to boat maintenance we had to book with another. Seastar was great and we don't even remember the name of the other company because we were so happy with Seastar! The crew was very welcoming when we first arrived onboard and were friendly and energetic to the end. Quite a few people experienced sea sickness (myself included), which of course Seastar can't control, but they do offer motion sickness pills, so definitely take them! I was a first time diver and the crew was great in instructing me and the dive was amazing. I wish I could have done the 2nd dive once we got out to Hastings Reef, but couldn't because I had to fly within 18 hours. But the entire experience was amazing and the staff was incredibly knowledgeable! Lunch was included and soda/water bottles/beer was available for purchase. Would definitely do it again and it was undoubtably a highlight of the trip!

1  Thank Megan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2014

Our original reef tour with a different company was cancelled two days before our planned stay, and after checking several websites, we decided on Seastar. The best decision we made! We had pretty rough seas but the crew was right there to help anyone who needed it. They kept a constant eye on everyone, helped when needed and were full of information about the reef. Even though we only snorkeled (they have guided snorkel tours) it was wonderful to see what the reef has to offer. The glass-bottom boat is a nice addition as some of the passengers didn't want/could go into the water. They have two snorkel areas and while the first one was a bit murky due to the weather, the Hastings Reef made up for it. At the end of the day the pictures taken during our trip were posted on Facebook for download. Since we didn't have an underwater camera, this was a nice touch. We liked that there are only about 35 people on the boat, all is inclusive and there is no surprise with added costs.

1  Thank nv2hogs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2014

We selected Seastar because of the limited numbers of passengers involved, but it could have been for a multitude of reasons, not least the excellent and very caring staff. Our trip out to the first reef was a little choppy which resulted in over 60% of the punters suffering, but the crew helped everyone and their kindness deserves 5* alone.
Once on the reef, we might as well have been dropped into an aquarium. The weather had been a little rough, but we were still able to see everything that we had hoped and more. Even though we just went snorkeling, we felt that we missed nothing. Our guide on the reef was a mine of information and her talk throughout our dive. The second dive/reef was even better.
This trip was the highlight of our 6 weeks in Australia & New Zealand, period.

1  Thank MagellansTours
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 14 March 2014

We went to Cairns just for this Reef Trip!

We went on a particularly windy day (due to a cyclone coming in) so a bunch of us were sea sick, but that is not SeaStar's fault at all of course - but do take their sea sick pills, as my husband and I only took our own motion sickness pills and they were not enough!

Overall Experience: Awesome!

Crew: Friendly and outgoing from the start. Helpful and engaging, but never over bearing. Made you feel safe and secure, even though the weather conditions were rocky.

Reef locations: safe, great, 2 locations was enough for us and was given plenty of time at each.

Other: Food was great, and they took great care of all the "seasick patients" :) , fins/snorkel/stinger suits were all provided and was very well organized.

Definitely recommend SeaStar to anyone and everyone :)

Thank kwc_toronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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