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3 Day / 3 Night Cod Hole & Ribbon Reef- Spirit Of Freedom - Dive Adventure - Great Barrier Reef - Cairns

Spirit of Freedom Cod Hole & Ribbon Reef  3 Day / 3 Night LiveAboard
Departs most Thursdays at 12pm and includes 11 Dives


About Trip
About Spirit of Freedom
Departs Most Thursdays No. of Divers 26
Duration 3 Days / 3 Nights Cabin Types Quad, Double/Twin, Stateroom, Ocean View, Deluxe
No. Dives 11 Dives Ensuites All cabins have ensuites
Check in 11.00am Cairns Nitrox Available
Disembark 10.00am Lizard Island Star Rating 4 Star
Min Cert OpenWater Cert Diving Experience Diving is suitable for all level of divers


Day 1 12.00pm departure – Lunch served while cruising to the outer reef – 2 dives today.
Day 2 Full Day at sea. Divers will have up to 5 dives today including a night dive
Day 3 Full Day at sea. Up to 4 dives today
Day 4 Disembark on Lizard Island for a 10.00am low level flight back to Cairns- arrive 11.30am.**
  **Scenic Flight is a Low Level Flight and is safe for divers.

About the Cruise
The Ribbon Reefs are a string of 10 coral ramparts of the GREAT BARRIER REEF stretching southward from the Cod Hole. Coral formations vary from beds of huge plate corals to isolated pinnacles sustaining an amazing display of fish life. You will visit walls and channels for the perfect drift dives as well as caves, canyons and shallow coral gardens. The Cod Hole is located 200 km to the north of Cairns and has become famous for it's family of resident Potato Cod (Groper). Each of these huge fish can weigh up to 100 kg and are well accustomed to posing for diver's cameras. Shark dives, Potato Cod feeding, sheer walls laced with massive soft corals, manta-rays, minke whales, and abundant healthy tropical reefs, rich with marine biodiversity are just some of the high-lights you'll experience with Spirit of Freedom diving tours. Snorkellers also welcome on this trip

Spirit of Freedom is a purpose built ocean going liveaboard dive boat. Built for passenger comfort which means stabilisers, large cabins all with ensuites, spacious saloon area for dining and relaxing and covered top side deck. Added to this is the level of onboard services offering all the amenities of a hotel - chef prepared meals, cabins serviced daily, hot towels after each dive, dive tender in the water on all dives and an inwater dive supervisor available most dives. You can choose between bringing your own equipment or full gear hire. All meals and snacks are provided in the package and accommodation ranges from Quad Share to Double, Twin, Stateroom and Ocean View Deluxe. Spirit of Freedom is air-conditioned inside with a spacious sun deck and dive deck.

This is a Fly and Dive Trip with the cruise starting in Cairns and finishing on Lizard Island with a flight back to Cairns, all included in the trip cost. As it is a low-level flight you will have a great Scenic Flight back to Cairns. Due to light aircraft weight restrictions, your total luggage weight is limited to  20 kilograms/ 45 lb per person. All bags must be soft sided. If you have additional luggage that you wish to have stored whilst you are on tour with Spirit of Freedom, we have storage facilities at our office.




Departing:   Cairns 12:00 noon Thursday
Returning:   Cairns 11:30 am Sunday 

Planning your travel arrangements
You will need to be in Cairns the night before departure. Spirit of Freedom recommends arrival into Cairns at least the day prior to your trip, as unforseen flight delays or lost baggage may cause inconvenience or you may even miss the boat. However, if you are flying into Cairns on day of departure, please note that you will need to make your own way to our dive shop or the vessel itself.

Check In & Hotel Transfers
Email up to 48hrs prior to departure to advise your Hotel Accomodation, we will then organise a transfer for you. Pick ups from Cairns City locations only.

Making your own way - Boarding is from 11.15 -11.30am Thursday morning, for a 12.00 noon departure. The vessel is located at Trinity Wharf at the end of Lake Street. Taxis and coaches can drive up onto the wharf to locate the vessel, which is usually berthed under the clock tower.

Fit to Dive
We recommend you complete a dive medical -if required - before you arrive in Cairns
Web address for Doctors registered to do Dive Medicals Australia Wide-
Web address for Cairns 24hr Medical Center - Can provide Dive Medicals until 8pm -

Dive Certification
Don’t forget to bring your Dive Certification which must be presented at check- in.

Sample Itinerary:

Boarding Spirit of Freedom at 11:15am at Trinity Wharf (complimentary transfers from Cairns city hotels are available) for a 12 noon departure. Lunch will be served on board while we cruise to the Great Barrier Reef to the north of Cairns, for an afternoon orientation dive and a twilight or night dive.

Friday- Today we dive Steve's Bommie, on Ribbon Reef # 3. This is an isolated pinnacle that rises from 100 feet at its base to around 15 feet from the surface. Colourful antheas and a vast array of fish cover this bommie, while big eye trevally and barracuda hang out in the blue. Look for nudibranch and stonefish. Today we may also dive the Clam Gardens, where giant clams up to three feet across will amaze you. Some of our other favourite sites in this area of the Ribbons include Flare Point and the beautiful Gorgonia Wall. 

Saturday- This morning we will dive the Cod Hole. This is a popular dive site famous for its resident family of large Potato Cod, (Groper). Good opportunity for photographers. We may also dive Dynamite Pass, possibly as a drift dive, well known as a channel for sharks cruising from the Coral Sea to the Barrier Reef. This afternoon we may dive Lighthouse Bommie, where Golden sea snakes are frequently sighted. In the spring months this site is also a Manta Ray cleaning station. Other sites we may visit today include Challenger Bay and Pixie Wall. This evening we cruise into Watson's Bay on Lizard Island where we will overnight in the lea of the island.

Sunday- This morning, after a leisurely breakfast, you have the opportunity to go ashore and explore Lizard Island. At 10:30am you will board a twin-engine light aircraft at Lizard Island for your low level flight over the reef back to Cairns. Arriving back at Cairns airport at approximately 11:30am, the Spirit of Freedom courtesy coach will meet you for your transfer back to your Cairns city hotel. 

Please note that above itinerary is a sample only and sites may vary or the sequence may change in accordance to the weather and the accessibility.

What to bring on board
Personal items and toiletries, swimwear, hat, and sweatshirt in the winter (May - September). Casual attire during the day and smart casual for evening wear. For safety and comfort we encourage no shoes to be worn on board. If you are not sure of your sea legs, we strongly recommend that you take motion sickness tablets on the trip. Kwells and Travel Calm are suitable to use when diving.

Luggage Restrictions
Due to light aircraft weight restrictions, your total luggage weight is limited to 20 kilograms/ 45 lb per person, plus maximum carry-on of 3kg (6.5lbs) or 10kg (22lbs) allowance for professional photo/video housed systems. Excess baggage storage is available in Cairns.

Flying After Diving
We recommend you give yourself a 24 hour surface interval after your last dive before flying.

Reef Taxes and Levies
There is an additional fee which includes Government Management Charge, as well as a Port Departure Tax and administration costs. Payable direct at the end of the trip.

Alcohol Policy
Australian wines and soft drinks are served complimentary with the evening meal. Outside of this time we operate a ships bar with beer, mixed drinks, wine selection. Drinks can be placed on a tab for payment at the end of your trip.

Please note that the PADI Advanced and PADI Nitrox Courses are available in conjunction with this trip.  They can be requested at time of booking and are only payable on board.


HEALTH AND FITNESS FOR DIVING  NOTE - If you are indicate yes to any of the questions listed below we will require a medical clearance from a doctor before you can dive. (Medical is required to be done within 90 days of the departure)

1. Since completing your last dive medical have you suffered any illness, injury or surgery that may effect your ability to dive safely? 

2. Are you currently suffering any illness or injury? 

3. Are you currently taking any prescripLon medicaLon other than the contracepLve pill?

4. Is there any other condiLon, fact or circumstance that may affect your fitness or ability to dive safely?

Frequently Asked Questions


Snorkeling Coral Sea off Spirit of Freedom

The (at times) deeper reefs tops and swift currents of the Coral Sea, make the Coral Sea reefs only suitable for very experienced snorkelers and strong swimmers with a high level of fitness. You may not be able to snorkel at every site. Please note that while you may be safe under the watchful eye of the 'look-out' crew, a snorkel buddy may not always be available and you may be required to snorkel alone and to wear our floatation equipment

Snorkeling Ribbon Reef with Spirit of Freedom

 Snorkelling on Spirit of Freedom is in waters which are exposed and not ‘calm sheltered waters’.  Our itinerary is to suit Scuba Diving and you may not be able to snorkel at every site.  There are opportunities to snorkel as the reef top of the Ribbon Reefs are relatively close to the surface. Most of our guests are scuba divers, however experienced snorkelers with a good level of fitness are welcome to join this tour. Please note that a snorkel buddy may not always be available, you may be required to snorkel alone and to wear our floatation equipment.  You will be safe under the watchful eye of the 'look-out' crew.

Luggage Restrictions on Spirit of Freedom

Due to light aircraft restrictions, your total weight of your luggage is limited to 20 kilograms/ 45 lb per person, including your dive gear and carry on luggage.


What are the dive experience Requirement to dive the Coral Sea with Spirit of Freedom
  • Diver experience recommendation: Advanced Diver certification with minimum 20 ocean dives including 5 dives in the last 12 months.
  • Less experience may result in limited diving due to environmental conditions and remote isolation of dive site. We recommend a Scuba Diver Refresher course prior to your trip.
  • 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.


Note all prices are Per Person.

Double / Per Person (minimum 2 pax share bed)


$2550.00 AUD


Double Sole Use / Per Cabin


$4650.00 AUD


Oceanview Delux / Per Person (minimum 2 pax share bed)


$3250.00 AUD


Ocean View Deluxe Sole Use / Per Cabin


$6500.00 AUD


Ocean View Standard / Per Person (minimum 2 pax share bed)


$3250.00 AUD


Ocean View Standard Sole Use / Per Cabin


$6050.00 AUD


Quad share


$2200.00 AUD


Stateroom / Per Person (minimum 2 pax share bed)


$2900.00 AUD


Stateroom Sole Use / Per Cabin


$5350.00 AUD


Twin/Double / Per Person


$2550.00 AUD


Twin/Double Sole Use / Per Cabin


$4650.00 AUD


Twin / Per Person


$2550.00 AUD



Snorkeller Discount
$-200.00 AUD
3 Day Full Equipment Hire
$135.00 AUD
3 Day Nitrox Package
$110.00 AUD
PADI Advanced Course ($285.00 POB)
$285.00 AUD
PADI Nitrox Course ($280.00 POB)
$280.00 AUD

Nitrox Course Payable on Board 

Meeting Point

11.15am Trinity Wharf (Cruise Liner Terminal)
Address:Corner Wharf and Lake Street
TBA, Call 48 hours prior to departure

*All Prices are Per Person and Prices may vary depending on Start Dates and options.

More Information

FAQ's Meeting Points Price Terms and Conditions Dates & Availability