Yongala Wreck & Coral Sea Expedition

2020: Departure date: 27 March | 24 April

6 Nights – 27 Dives. This expedition combines adventure diving: SS Yongala Wreck; dramatic vertical walls of Holmes and Flinders Reef. This expedition is booked as a 6 night expedition. Dive back in time and into history.

6 Night Yongala Wreck & Coral Sea Expedition featuring:

  • Wheeler Reef – Explore this pristine platform reef with white sands and spectacular coral gardens, schooling fish, sharks, turtles and rays.
  • SS Yongala – Australia’s largest, most intact historic shipwreck which sank in 1911, resting 14-28m below the surface. Claimed to be one of the worlds ‘top ten’ wrecks, the Yongala is renowned for its incredible diversity and abundance of marine life. Giant Queensland groupers, sea snakes, shovel-nosed rays and huge schools of fish abound at the Yongala.
  • SS Gothenburg & Old Reef – Whilst the history of the SS Gothenburg is less famed and regaled much less than the Yongala, it has an equally tragic story of her fate. Strewn across Old Reef, this wreck is a fascinating dive into Australia’s maritime history where she now lies amidst the home of some beautiful corals and their reef inhabitants.
  • Flinders Reef – Spectacular walls with vertical drops in excess of 300m  (1000ft) and 40m (120ft +) visibility. Bommies and reefs are smothered with both soft and hard corals at dive sites ‘Trigger Happy and ‘ Fan Fair’. Huge soft coral trees, fans and sea whips decorate ‘Cod Wall’ where the ancient Gigantus Gorgonia fan spans over 5 meters. Sharks tuna and barracuda patrol the reef slopes drop offs, and fish school around the edges of the reefs where the currents diverge.
  • Holmes Reef’s – Dramatic vertical walls rising from the depths in crystal clear water. Explore, the walls, bommies, caves and a canyon’s of Amazing, Nonki Bommie and the Abyss or Cathedral.  Sharks, turtle’s, soft coral trees and fans will keep the most fastidious of divers satisfied.

 

Wheeler Reef

A popular dive site located about 100km from Townsville. With an average visibility of 30m plus and dive site depths ranging from 2m to 30m, perfect dive profiles and long bottom times are easily achievable. Wheeler is rated as one of the best night dives on the reef, so enjoy.

Yongala Wreck

This world class shipwreck is the one of the key subjects in Sir David Attenborough’s forthcoming documentary on the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef. Recognised as one of world’s best historic wreck dive sites, this 111m wreck lies on its starboard side in 30m of water. Sunk in a cyclone on 23 March 1911, she is now home to a spectacular concentration of marine life.

SS Gothenburg

Visit the site of one of Australia’s worst maritime disasters. In 1875, this 60m steamship encountered a severe storm and ran aground at Old Reef, 130km southeast of Townsville. The wreck lies in 9 – 16m of water and an extensive coral garden has flourished around the ship’s remains with pelagic fish and sharks a common sighting.

Flinders Reef/Flinders Cay

Scan spectacular walls that drop 300m (1000ft) with visibility averaging 40m+ (120ft). Descend to gorgonian fans up to 5m wide (the Gigantus Gorgonus) and huge soft coral trees. Mingle with patrolling sharks, tuna and barracuda.

Holmes Reef

A twin reef system about 240km east of Cairns, Holmes Reef offers adventurous divers a range of caves, swim-throughs and deep fissures to explore. Go deep to explore the dozens of caves festooned with soft corals, or stay higher up to play with the fish. Sites we will visit: Nonki Bommie, Amazing and South Holmes.

Dive Site Guarantee!

Spoilsport’s outstanding stability minimizes disruption to your itinerary and your scuba diving experience. If weather forces an itinerary change we divert to the best, ‘safe, accessible sites’ to ensure you get the best scuba diving available. If weather is not suitable for wreck expedition will divert to reef. The Coral Sea may not be accessible in strong winds.

All itinerary details are subject to change, specific marine life cannot be guaranteed.

 

Expedition prices, per person in Australian dollars.

Yongala Wreck & Coral Sea Expedition - 6 Night Townsville to Cairns
CabinPrice
Premium$5580
Standard$5120
Club$4470
Budget$3810

EMC $6.50/day
Yongala Mooring $13.55/day

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

Please note that the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority requires us to collect an Environmental Management Charge of $6.50 per day spent on the Great Barrier Reef.  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

Itinerary (Townsville to Cairns – 27 dives)

Sample itinerary, subject to change based on conditions.

Please note: Expedition boarding in Townsville & disembarking in Cairns, (commercial flight to Townsville not included and to be arranged by yourself).

Friday, Wheeler Reef: (2 dives + night dive)

  • Check in on Spoilsport at Breakwater Marina, Townsville between 9:30 – 10:00 am
  • 10:00 am depart for Wheeler Reef
  • Assemble dive gear and complete pre-dive briefings
  • 12:00 pm Lunch
  • 2:30 ‘Open Dive Deck’
  • 4:00pm afternoon tea
  • 6:30pm Night dive brief
  • 8:00pm dinner

Saturday, SS Yongala Wreck: (4 dives + night dive)

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

Sunday, SS Yongala & SS Gothenburg: (4 dives + night dive)

  • As above.
  • 7am to 2pm ‘Open Deck’ at SS Yongala (3 Dives)
  • Afternoon and night spent at ‘Old Reef’ & SS Gothenburg

Monday – Tuesday Flinders Reef (4dives + night dive)

  • Cod Wall, Geronimo’s, Watanabe, Rock Arch, Fan Fair, Trigger Happy
  • As above

Wednesday, Coral sea Holmes Reef: (4dives)

  • Nonki Bommie, Amazing, Abyss, Cathedral
  • As above (no night dive), 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 and sing along to music played by our talented crew
  • Spoilsport cruises overnight to Cairns

Thursday:

  • 7:00 am:  Light breakfast
  • 8:00 am:  Disembark and courtesy transfer to Cairns inner city hotels, the airport or our office where we can store your luggage until 5pm if you have a later flight

Important:

  • We recommend that you allow 24 hours between your last dive and your onward flight (all diving is finished by 5pm Wednesday)
Summary
Mega Marine Life Wreck diving
Experience
Advanced, or 15 logged ocean dives inc. 5 in last 12 months.
Embark
Check-in between 9:30 – 10:00 am on Spoilsport at Breakwater Marina, Townsville
Disembark
Thursday 8am – Trinity Wharf, Cairns
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