It’s on nearly everyone’s Bucket List, and since I’m a certified scuba diver, it was definitely on mine. So when it came time to celebrate one of those milestone midlife baby boomer birthdays, I could think of no better place than Cairns Great Barrier Reef. In addition to exploring one of the world’s top scuba destinations, there are other ways to absorb the stunning natural beauty of the reef and islands, and I intended to try them all.
Located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of northeast tropical Queensland, The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef, stretching out for 1800 miles. It comprises over 3000 individual reef systems and coral cays. It’s one of the seven wonders of the natural world, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the only structure made up of living organisms visible from space.
I was a little concerned because I’d heard reports that the reef was dead due to bleaching. Sure, climate change, causing ocean warming has resulted in coral bleaching in parts of the reef. As global warming continues, it will be a challenge for the coral to keep up with increasing ocean temperatures.
However, I was relieved to discover while some patches have suffered damage, the Great Barrier Reef is most certainly not “dead.” and that dive operators like Divers Den and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park’ are leading efforts to protect the ecosystems of the reef.
While the future of the reef may be uncertain, as of now there is an abundance of healthy coral abundant aquatic life. Here are three distinctly different ways to enjoy this fabulous natural resource in tropical Queensland, Australia.
Want to know more about the Cairns Great Barrier Reef? Read the rest of this story about the Great Barrier Reef in My Itchy Travel Feet.
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Other stories you might want to read:
- Sea Turtle Encounter in the Great Barrier Reef
- Adventures in Queensland: 28 Pictures to Spark Your Wanderlust
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About the Author
Patti Morrow is a freelance travel writer and founder of the award-winning blog Luggage and Lipstick. TripAdvisor called her one of “20 Baby Boomer Travel Bloggers Having More Fun Than Millennials.” Patti is the author of the book “Girls Go Solo: Tips for Women Traveling Alone,” and has over 150 bylines in 40 print and online publications, including The Huffington Post, International Living Magazine, Washington Post Sunday Travel, Travel Girl, Travel Play Live Magazine, and Ladies Home Journal.
Read more about Patti Morrow.