Turtle Spectacular – Far Northern Reefs – North Bound

2024 Departure dates: 14 November

7 Nights – 27 Dives.  A rare opportunity to visit the remote and pristine reefs of the far northern Great Barrier Reef.  Dive with hundreds of turtles at Raine Island & descend on the historic Pandora Wreck of ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ fame.

“Absolutely mind blowing!” – Andrew Hunter, Australia
“The coral is the healthiest I’ve seen in 25 years of diving” – Aimee Dorfman, USA


  • Remote rarely visited reefs with incredible coral.
  • Cod Hole – Get up close with diver sized potato cod.
  • Stanley Island (Yindayin) – Incredible indigenous rock art.
  • Tijou and Cat Reefs – Wall diving with fans, soft corals and pelagics.
  • Small Detached Reefs – Vertical walls adorned with soft corals and fans, patrolled by reef sharks & potato cod.
  • Great Detached Reef – Big fans, hard and soft corals & pelagics.
  • Pandora Wreck – Historic wreck sunk in 1791 with 35 crew and mutineers from HMS Bounty.
  • Raine Island – See hundreds of turtles at the world’s biggest green turtle nesting site. Tiger sharks are attracted to the nesting turtles.



Cod Hole - Ribbon Reefs

The Cod Hole is famous for its diver-sized potato cod. These fish are incredibly inquisitive and don’t mind getting very chummy with divers.  A great opportunity to capture photographs of these magnificent characters or a simply hang out and enjoy their company.

Stanley Island (Yindayin)

Incredible indigenous rock art featuring turtles, eagle rays and crocodiles as well as ancient tall ships from the 16th Century.  The world’s longest art movement has spanned for thousands of years and you have the opportunity to see this pristine, rarely visited piece of important indigenous history.

Tijou / Cat Reefs

Exciting diving on walls buzzing with barracuda, rays, sharks and turtles and covered with fans and whips.  The coral here will amaze too with Pussy Galore being especially beautiful.  Explore the walls around Catchers Mitt, cut with gullies and full of fish and hard corals.

Small Detached Reefs

Stunning sheer walls covered in soft corals and fans, combined with pelagic fish action make this region a diver’s paradise.  There are plenty of dive sites to choose from including Arienne, Shizue, Wrasses Wrath and Kicker, all featuring excellent coral and fish life.

Great Detached Reef

The 46km of fringing reef here give us some great sites to choose from.  See fields of hard coral down to 30m at Turmoil, plus beautiful soft corals, fans and whips at Twin Peaks, Oh My Bommie, Cracker and Big Woody.  This reef is home to masses of marine life, large & small.

Raine Island

Between 40,000-100,000 green turtles visit Raine Island each year to lay their eggs in the warm sands. The island is not accessible to the public, but the reefs surrounding it are excellent for diving. The pristine coral here is some of the best we’ve seen anywhere.

RMS Quetta (2022 expedition only.)

The RMS Quetta sank on the night of 28 February 1890, after striking an uncharted rock. At the time, it was Queensland’s worst maritime disaster. Today, the RMS Quetta lies on her port side in 18m of water and is an excellent dive site in terms of wreck, reef and fish. The wreck diving jewel of the far north.

Pandora Wreck

HMS Pandora is a dive into history like no other. This Royal Navy ship sank in 1791 in 33m with the loss of 35 crew and mutineers from HMS Bounty.  Much of the wooden structure has perished however the anchor and stove are the highlights of this historically important site.

Thursday Island

Disembark at Horn Island 8:00am.
Options for further travel vary. Daily scheduled flights from Horn Island to Cairns are available & should be arranged by the individual.

All itinerary details are subject to change, specific marine life cannot be guaranteed.
Please note no courses will be available on this expedition.

Expedition prices, per person in Australian dollars.

7 Night Turtle Spectacular – Far Northern Reefs 2023

Environmental Management Fee $7 per day (subject to change)
*Horn Island flight not included.

7 Night Turtle Spectacular – Far Northern Reefs 2024

Environmental Management Fee $7 per day (subject to change)
*Horn Island flight not included.

Rates include:

  • Accommodation in twin/double cabins
  • Delicious meals & snacks, wine and soft drink are included with the evening meal
  • Tanks, air fills and weight belt
  • Daily cabin service
  • Reef ecology programme
  • Dive computer workshop

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority requires us to collect an Environmental Management Charge of $19.50.  This amount will be added to your bar bill at the end of your expedition.

Click on the links here for extras such as dive courses, photo services and gear hire, plus discounts available.

Premium – queen or double bed, private bathroom, ocean views.
Standard – twin beds, private bathroom, ocean views.
Club – twin bunk beds, private bathroom, no ocean view.
Budget – twin bunk beds, share bathroom, no ocean view.


Itinerary (North Bound – Cairns to Horn Island – 27 dives)

Sample itinerary, subject to change based on conditions.

Please note: Boarding this expedition is ex Cairns onboard Spoilsport; disembarkation at Horn Island, (commercial flight not included and to be arranged by yourself).


  • Check in at our office (3 Abbott St, Cairns) between 8:30 am and 3:00 pm.
  • 3:30 pm: Our crew will lead you from the meeting point to board Spoilsport.  Your Trip Director provides a full briefing.
  • 5:00 pm:  Spoilsport departs Cairns.
  • Time to organise any rental equipment and put your dive gear together on the dive deck.
  • 7.00 pm Dinner

Friday:  (4 dives + night dive)

This is a sample of a ‘typical day’, however exact times may vary to optimise the prevailing weather conditions on the day.

  • 6.30 am: Wake up call, light breakfast available in dining room
  • 7:00 am: Dive brief & diving commences
  • 9.00 am: Full cooked breakfast
  • 10.30 am: Dive brief & diving. “Open decks” accommodate 1-2 dives either am or pm
  • 2.00 pm: Lunch
  • 3.30 pm: Dive brief & diving
  • 4:30 pm: Afternoon tea
  • 6:30 pm: Night dive brief & dive
  • 8:00 pm: Dinner

Sat:  (3 dives + Stanley Island Rock Art + BBQ party night)

  • 6.30 am: Wake up call, light breakfast available in dining room
  • 7:00 am: Dive brief & diving commences
  • 9.00 am: Full cooked breakfast
  • 10.30 am: Dive brief & diving. “Open decks” accommodate 1-2 dives either am or pm
  • 2.15 pm: Lunch
  • 4.00 pm: Stanley Island Rock Art, Island Excursion
  • 7:00 pm: BBQ party night


Sunday – Tues: (4 dives + night dive)

  • As per Friday.

Wednesday: (4 dives)

  • As per above. Exit last dive 5pm.
  • As the sun sets, we pour the champagne as we ready for an Aussie BBQ party night. Don’t forget to wear your loudest tropical shirt or dress.
  • Spoilsport cruises overnight to Horn Island.


  • 7.00 am: Light breakfast
  • 8:00 am: Disembark Spoilsport, courtesy transfer to the Horn Island airport (HID) or your hotel.


  • When booking your commercial flight out of Horn Island, please ensure you allow the recommend 24 hours between your last dive and your onward flight (all diving is finished by 5pm Wednesday).
  • Please check with your flight carrier for luggage allowances.
  • Please note no courses will be available on this expedition.


Adventure Diving
Advanced, or 15 logged ocean dives inc. 5 in last 12 months
Thursday 3:30pm – Trinity Wharf, Cairns.
(Check-in before 3pm at the Mike Ball office.)
Thursday 08:00 am – Horn Island
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