By Scott Holmes.
The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most beautiful places Australia has to offer, but what’s the best time to go if you want to explore what’s beneath the reef?
According to Adrenalin Dive in Townsville, Tropical North Queensland is great for diving all year round. However there are some differences in what you can expect as the seasons change.
Winter usually brings cooler, clearer days with better visibility, you can typically expect to see 15-25m under the water. It can get pretty windy though with winds reaching 25 knots! You can expect cool water temperatures of around 21-24 degrees Celsius with the air temperature staying around 25 degrees. Remember to pack some warm clothes for night time as temperatures can drop down to a chilly 10 degrees.
If you visit the reef between July and September you might be lucky enough to spot some Humpback Whales – just make sure you don’t get too close!!
In summer the water warms to 25-31 degrees Celsius while the outside temperatures generally range from 28 to 35 degrees. Coral spawning occurs around the full moon in October and November making for absolutely gorgeous viewing!
January to April is the wet/cyclone season with high humidity but can offer some great diving with extended periods of calm seas between tropical low pressure systems.
During the warmer months you can expect to see huge schools of bait fish, Manta Rays and the occasional Whale Shark. Keep in mind though that visibility is reduced slightly from winter topping out at about 15m.
However if you really just want to have a magical experience exploring the reef it really doesn’t matter what time of year you go!