Experience firsthand, the awe, and serenity of swimming with the majestic Dwarf Minke Whales on the Great Barrier Reef!
BOARDING AND DEPART CAIRNS
Boarding at 1800, followed by departure for the 16-hour journey to the world-famous Ribbon Reefs. Dinner is not served on this first evening, so we recommend eating prior to boarding.
ARRIVE AT RIBBON 10
We reach Ribbon Number 10 at approximately 0900 and after breakfast and the pre-swim briefing, we prepare the vessel and the lucky guests for (hopefully) our first encounter with the whales!
RIBBON 10 - SWIM WITH MINKES
Day 2 at Ribbon 10, with the aim to locate and swim with Minkes. If we are unable to find any whales, there is the option of diving and snorkeling at sites such as Challenger Bay, Gotham City, and Lighthouse Bommie.
FINAL MINKE SWIM - DEPART RIBBON 10
Our third and final day at Ribbon 10, and the last chance to swim with the Minkes. We depart Ribbon 10 in the evening, for our 5-hour journey south to Ribbon 3.
RIBBON 3 - DIVE & SNORKEL
Wake up at Ribbon 3, one of the most spectacular areas on the Great Barrier Reef. We will spend the day diving at locations such as Steve's Bommie; Flare Point, and Joanie's Joy. After the last dive of the day, we say goodbye to the Ribbons, and begin our journey back to Cairns.
ARRIVE CAIRNS - END OF EXPEDITION
After arrival into Cairns, early on the 7th, enjoy a light breakfast before disembarking for your onward journey
Experienced, local Expedition Guides
'Open-Deck' for Minke swims
Up to 10 dives on the Ribbon Reefs
Suitable for snorkelers and divers
Chef-prepared meals and snacks
Maximum of 12 guests
SWIM WITH MINKES
WHEN YOU SWIM WITH THE CURIOUS MINKE WHALES, YOU'RE NEVER REALLY SURE WHO IS WATCHING WHO.
AVERAGE INTERACTIONS LAST FOR 90 MINUTES, WITH 2-3 WHALES AT A TIME. THIS MEANS THAT ALL YOU NEED TO DO IS SIMPLY LAY ON THE SURFACE, PUT YOUR FACE IN THE WATER, AND WATCH ONE OF THE GREATEST SHOWS ON EARTH UNFOLD IN FRONT OF YOUR VERY EYES!
IN THIS PART OF THE WORLD, THE RIBBON REEFS ARE THE JEWEL IN THE CROWN OF THE FAR NORTHERN GREAT BARRIER REEF.
COMPRISING 10 SEPARATE REEF SYSTEMS, AS WELL AS NUMEROUS UNNAMED PATCH REEFS, THIS REGION OFFERS SOME OF THE MOST MAGNIFICENT DIVING IN THE WORLD. WITH AN INCREDIBLE RANGE OF SITES TO CHOOSE FROM, AND AN ASTOUNDING LEVEL OF BIODIVERSITY, "THE RIBBONS" NEVER DISAPPOINT
WE HAVE TEAMED-UP WITH THE SUPERB MV ARGO, A LOCALLY-BASED EXPEDITION GRADE VESSEL, TO OFFER OUR AMAZING DIVE EXPEDITIONS TO THE RIBBON REEFS AND BEYOND!
HAVING CONDUCTED NUMEROUS WILDLIFE AND RESEARCH EXPEDITIONS OVER THE YEARS, MV ARGO WAS A NATURAL CHOICE WHEN IT CAME TO CHOOSING A VESSEL THAT COULD HELP US DELIVER HIGH-QUALITY DIVING EXPEDITIONS TO THE FARTHEST REACHES OF THE GREAT BARRIER REEF AND THE CORAL SEA
Dwarf Minke Whales (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), are one of the smallest species of Baleen whale, and right here in Queensland is the only place in the world where humans can interact with these amazing marine mammals. Each winter (June-August), the Minkes make their annual migration along the east coast of Australia, eventually aggregating in a particular area of the Great Barrier Reef - The Ribbon Reefs.
Since the 1980s, when Minke Whales were first discovered on the Great Barrier Reef, special trips to swim with the whales have been conducted, and in that time, an almost 100% success rate has been achieved, with many interactions lasting several hours, and often with multiple whales. Being wild animals, no guarantee can be given that we will encounter the whales, but due to their predictable migratory pattern at this time of year, there is an excellent chance of swimming with these magnificent creatures.
Our Minke Expeditions are all about the whales, meaning that we plan the trip in a way that gets us to the hotspots where Minkes are most likely to be found, and then aim to get as much time in the water with them as possible. This also makes our Minke Expedition a fantastic option for snorkelers, with the best interactions being while on the surface, snorkeling. Time is also set aside for diving, giving us the chance to dive on some of the most well-known sites on the Great Barrier Reef. These include 'Steve's Bommie', plus other famous spots.
Our Minke Whale trip was amazing! Martin organized such a good trip and he always has a wealth of knowledge! I wouldn't hesitate to book another trip with Scuba IQ, we had so many minkes around us and some beautiful dives at Ribbon No. 10 as well
Angelina, New York