Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Whales Will Be Here Soon

The whales will soon be back on the Great Barrier Reef. Be sure not to miss out. Book your diving trip at Calypso Adventures and spot a whale on the way.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Stinger Season

It's that time of year again. Stinger season.

When in tropical waters always swim in the stinger nets provided preferably wearing a stinger suit.

At Calypso Dive we provide stinger suits to all of our clients on reef trips. We rarely spot jellyfish far out on the reef anyway because the stingers come from river mouths (according to current government research) but it's always better to be safe than sorry.

Friday, 25 September 2009

Aboriginal Art

I know this has got nothing to do with scuba diving but we get asked lots of questions here. One of the questions is 'where can I buy authentic aboriginal art?'

Well the answer is simple. Pandanus Gallery, Palm Cove.

Pandanus Gallery deal direct with the indigenous artists and provide exhibitions and promotions for upcoming aboriginal artists.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

CALYPSO II - Reef Exploration 10TH APRIL 2008

"Descending Eddy Reef today was everything we expected and more"
"Thank you so much to all the crew at Calypso. It was our very first time on the Great Barrier Reef , our cold feet were soon warmed to the experience by the rich marine life and the special care given to us, THANKS AGAIN CALYPSO!"

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Calypso I - PRIVATE CHARTER 26TH March 2008

During our recent Private Charter from Dunk Island we got up close and personal with some local dolphins, they were happy to see us and decided to just 'hang out' for a while beside our beloved vessel Calypso I. This 30' Procat is purpose built for diving and snorkelling. Private Charter is all about YOU and what you like to do. Surveyed to take up to 18 passengers its a great day out for the family and/or friends....

Thursday, 3 April 2008

Calypso II - Reef Exploration 25th March 2008

Scuba diving will get you up close and personal with the sea life and the Giant Turtles do not seem to mind the company of guests aboard Calypso II.

They are used to our gentle presence and are probably checking us out too!!

Come on down to the sea floor with us and see it all for yourself.

Friday, 22 February 2008

Calypso II - Reef Exploration 3rd January 2008

The Feather Star are a most beautiful sight attached to colourful coral in flourescent aqua pools amongst Eddy Reef.

"The way they dance and flow in the water is mesmorising".

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Reef Exploration Calypso II - 26th December Boxing Day

Adults are not the only ones who get to dive. Children 12 years and over can also learn. As these two did on boxing day 2007. A truly unique experience and confidence booster.

Our Dive Instructors have all the patience to teach and guide all levels of experience.

Congratulations on diving the Great Barrier Reef!!

Friday, 11 January 2008

Calypso II Reef Exploration 1st December 2007

Calypso Dive offers Underwater Photography courses for Advanced divers whom are interested... We can have you feeling like a 'pro' in no time, and on the Great Barrier Reef at that!

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Calypso II Reef Exploration 9th November 2007

" the Calypso dive guides seemed to know where all the special fish lived.... they're all beautiful, though particularly the lion fish....."

Rita, England

Calypso II Reef Exploration 6th November 2007

Go diving with a pal. There is so much coral reef to explore together and the photos are priceless....

Friday, 21 December 2007

1st November Great Barrier Reef Exploration Calypso II

"The Giant Clams are my favourite, thanks to the dive crew for such a special day"
Janine, Ireland

23rd October 2007 Reef Exploration Calypso II

"There was just so much colour"

Jean, U.S.A

6th October 2007 Calypso II Great Barrier Reef Trip

"The day was amazing, can't wait to come back"

Jenny & Tyler, W.A. Australia

"My first dive ever, the guides and instructors were so helpful and the reef so gorgeous"

Desmond, New York

"If your ever in Northern Queensland don't go by Mission Beach, the reef and people here are so worth the stop"

Cherie, England

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Wednesday 19th September 2007, Calypso II Great Barrier Reef Trip

"Cheers guys for a fantastic day, See you tomorrow & the next day!"
Laura & Gary Kenny, Scotland
"Europe envies Australia for your Great Barrier Reef!
We had a wonderful day & wonderful snorkeling conditions!"
Stephanie & Sven, Germany

"Great day on the reef Good Crew & Good Boat.
Well worth the trip!"
P&J Wood

"Great day, terrific crew, beautiful reef.
Ree Mc Gowan Wilson “high on sugar”

Tuesday 18th September 2007, Calypso II Reef Trip

"Thank you to all the calypso crew,
you made our experinec at the reef one we won’t forget."
Briana & Luke

· Cheerful boat
· Awesome diving on the Great Barrier Reef
· Thoughtfull staff
The vocabulary the frenchy has just learned.
Thanks to the French lively guy, to David & the gorgreous blonde girl!"
The Frenchies, Arno, Tom & Vivianne

"Had an awesome day.
It was a real experience I will never forget.
Thanks Guys!"

Friday 14th September 2007, Calypso Reef Trip 2007

"I saw a shark and a turtle! Thank you!
One of the best things I’ve done in OZ.
Had a great day even the cheesy speech from the skipper!"
Owen, Brighton UK

"The staff was so kind, helpful,
fun and accommodating.
Thanks for the good times in the sun and the lunch.
Happy birthday to me!"
Rachel from California USA &
Doug from NY USA

"It was impossible to ask for a more perfect day!
Thank you to all the staff.
A dive to remember a holiday of a lifetime.
All the best"
Debbie & Larry

Tuesday 11th September 2007, Calypso II Reef Trip

"I know I’m full of hot air as andy says but this was the highlight of our trip!!
Thanks so much mate!
Lovely crew as well. Cheers"
Odile & Nicolas

"Awesome day, fantastic diving,
Nick was a wicked instructor
any more laid back and he would be laying down. Cheers"
Dan and Nina

"Brilliant day apart from lost wedding ring of
37 years on the reef. Oh dear! Cheers"
Virginia & Dave

Monday 10th September 2007, Calypso II Reef Trip

"Bloody fantastic we will recommend this to everyone we know.
Thank you so much for the perfect day cheers!"

"Hey guys, Thanks for an awesomeday!!
This was our first ever snorkel
and we loved it thanks heaps!"
Sarah & Ray

"The crew made the day!
The reef was amazing best dive boat
we have been on in the last 3 months traveling.
Great work nancy the dive was great fun. Hope to be back!"

Sunday, 9 September 2007

Thursday 6th September, Calypso II Reef Trip

Winds are finally dropping! We went out today with about 15 knots, dolphins were quickly spotted at a distance and lots of people tried diving for the first time...
First time dive on the Great Barrier Reef, what a lucky experience!

Here is what today’s passengers had to say...

"Hey Guys, Thanks for an incredible day & the introductory dive was ace!"
Jess, Scotty's Backpackers

"Wow! Thanks for an unbelievable and perfect 1st Dive. I'll never forget it!
Julia, Dunk Island Voyages Resort

"To the Crew of Calypso II. Excellent Effort had a great day."
Troy & Tara, Rocky xx, Dunk Island Voyages Resort

"Thanks for a fabulous day. Great Fun, Relaxed, Friendly crew, Beautiful Fish!!"
Kerrie, Dunk Island Voyages Resort

"To Calypso, I had the best day ever - Frenchie you're an angel -
a true professional - thanx 4 everything - Nancy you're a bloody legend -
Amy I love you - You Guys Rock"

"Glad we chose to dive instead of snorkel, best day under the reef.
Thanks guys so much had a blast!"
Sian & Brad, Dunk Island Voyages Resort

Saturday 8th September 2007, Calypso II Reef Trip

A perfect day! Perfect Weather 5 knots & the sun was out! Perfect Visibility & Perfect passengers... what more could we ask for! According to the comments book the crew are pretty perfect too :)

Here is what our guests had to say about their trip....

"Very Professional run and everyone on staff is so friendly!! I hadn't dived in six years but felt very well looked after and guided, so my dives were enjoyable!! Thanks!"

"Thanks so much for a fantastic day.
We really enjoyed your friendly crew and atmosphere"
Sophie & Carl, Eco Village

"Thanking you all for an unforgettable experience.
Hopefully its the first of many dives. Cheers."
"Nick thanks for persuading me to dive!!"
Claire, Yvonne & Pauline, Scotty's Backpackers

"Thanks very much for a great day, it was a great experience would definitely want to do it again!"
Susan, Rainforest Motel

"Great Friendly crew had a great fun trip would recommend it to anyone"
Paul & Joanne, Eco Village

"That was Bakgat Broer.... The Best!"
Lloyds & Oliviers, Eco Village

Friday, 17 August 2007

A Bit Blustery

You were going on a reef trip but it's been called off because of the howling wind..? If this is you then don't worry. How about a spot of jet skiing on Dunk Island instead? The bay off the jet ski beach is always protected from the wind so you'll have nice calm water to jetski on.

Saturday, 11 August 2007

Jet Ski Mission Beach

Have you been jet skiing recently? If not, why not dumbo? It's such a fantastic experience that I can't believe you'd try to go through your life without not attempting it. Absolutely tops.

Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Coral Reefs Declining Fast

Coral reefs in the Pacific and Indian oceans are disappearing faster than had previously been thought, a scientific study has shown.
Nearly 1,554 sq km (600 sq miles) of reef have disappeared each year since the 1960s - twice the speed at which rainforest is being lost.

The corals are vanishing at a rate of 1% per year, a decline that has begun decades earlier than expected.

Details of the survey appear in the journal Plos One.

Read more at BBC online.

Saturday, 4 August 2007

Jet Ski Mission Beach

People are often asking where you can jet ski in Mission Beach. The simple answer is to ask the guys from Dunk Jet Sports to come and pick you up then you can go for a play around Dunk Island which usually has calmer waters in the bay. Dunk Jet Sports have a sister company that operate Great Barrier Reef diving trips from Mission Beach - Calypso Dive can be found down the Wongaling Beach Road.

My web site design company often go jet skiing around Dunk with the guys - they are excellent.

Tuesday, 3 July 2007

Great Visibility

The season for reef trips has begun in earnest. The weather is great and the visibility in the water is even better for snorkellers and divers. Recently we've been lucky enough to see manta rays and turtles in abundance. Save time and travel from Mission Beach to the reef - it cuts travel times down from about 2 hours as opposed to Cairns companies.

Saturday, 23 June 2007


The box jellyfish inhabits North Queensland coastal waters during the summer months (October to March). People wishing to swim at this time of year should do so in protective clothing or enclosures. The box jellyfish is not commonly found out on the reef, but they do surround the mainland. Although incredibly rare, it is the irukandji and blue bottle jellyfish that are usually linked to the reef's habitat. It is believed that to treat the stings of the box and irukandji jellyfish, vinegar (or alcohol) can be used. However, others believe that vinegar would not work on the irukandji as it is fatal. Blue bottle stings can not be treated by vinegar either, as it heightens the degree of the sting. For blue bottle stings, it is best to use cold water and ice.


Visitors to the Great Barrier Reef have even been known to spot sharks (superorder Selachimorpha). The most common are the white-tip and black-tip reef sharks. Most sharks found at the reef pose no threat to visitors, due to the fact that they eat only fish. However, they may attack if given sufficient provocation.


Whales usually appear around the Great Barrier Reef during winter, when they migrate from the waters of the Antarctic to those of the Pacific in order to mate and give birth. Many tour operators run excursions during these months to see the whales, which range from the humpback to the minke, and even dolphins can be seen in these waters too.


Dolphins belong to the Delphinidae and, in some cases, Platanistoidea and Odontoceti families. They evolved about 10 million years ago and there are now in existence about 40 types of dolphin, within 17 genera. They differ in size from the 1.2m and 40kg (Maui's dolphin), to the 9.5m and 10 tons (the orca). Many of the dolphin species are known to weigh about 50 - 200 kg and can be found all over the world. One particular species native to the Great Barrier Reef habitat is the rare irrawaddy inshore dolphin. The irrawaddy dolphin has a rounded head with no beak, and a flexible neck. They can vary in colour from dark and light blue-grey to pale blue. It is grouped as an oceanic dolphin and is carnivorous, living off a diet of fish and squid. Irrawaddy dolphins also carry features which are similar to both the porpoise and the beluga whale, and therefore sometimes prove difficult to define. They have a special relationship with the fishermen at the Great Barrier Reef, helping to guide the fish into their nets.

Sea Snakes

Although most sea snakes can be found living in the waters of Singapore and Borneo, there are also a lot that live off the Great Barrier Reef. In fact, there are in the region of 17 - 21 species of sea snake and Australia is home to at least 14 of them. Ideally, sea snakes are suited to tropical waters, but they can also be found in subtropical seas.

Sea Birds

The reef is also home to many sea birds such as reef herons, osprey, pelicans, frigate birds, sea eagles and shearwaters. Among these are also white-breasted sea eagles which inhabit the coast and islands, and feed off fish that swim close to the surface of the water. The roseate tern can also be found here as well as in Japan, while other birds fill the air and live off the reef and its environment.


The Great Barrier Reef is home to around 4,000 species of mollusc, including the giant clam - the world's largest bivalve mollusc - which reaches the great age of 70 years and measures 1m in length. Most giant clams are hermaphrodites. The feathery gills of a mollusc allow them to absorb the oxygen from the water.


Closely related to elephants rather than any marine animal, the dugong (Dugong dugon) is the smallest member of the order Sirenia (which also includes the manatees and Steller's sea cow). It weighs in at 400 kg and measures 3m in length. Its name originated from the Malay word 'duyung', meaning 'lady of the sea' or 'mermaid'. Dugong can live up to 70 years and feed off sea grass9. They give birth once every 2½ - 5 years after they've had their first calf, between the ages of 6 - 17 years old. Groups of 10,000 or more are present on the Great Barrier Reef of Australia, at Shark Bay, and in Torres Strait, which is south of New Guinea.

In Mission Beach, dugongs can be sighted on the sea grass beds off Hinchinbrook Island.

Sea Turtles

The reef is home to six of the seven known species of sea turtle, which are: green, leatherback, hawksbill, loggerhead, flatback and Olive Ridley. When the eggs belonging to sea turtles are laid, the creatures possess no gender. In fact it is the job of the sand to determine the sex of the sea turtles. The females who become sexually active at 30 - 50 years old can lay 100 eggs at any one time. Ocean currents aid the hatchlings into the waters and they can travel hundreds of miles before becoming fully grown. When they too become old enough to have babies they return to where they were hatched and lay their eggs there. The leatherback is the biggest sea turtle, weighing in at 916kg.

Fish on The Reef

One of the most encouraging tourist attractions to the Great Barrier Reef is that it is home to about 1,500 million fish and every year this number multiplies - as well as the amount of species that can be found. In just one hectare alone there can be in the region of 200 species of fish with different sizes, shapes and colours that can be categorised and identified. Angelfish, bannerfish, moorish idol, batfish, blennies, gobies, lizardfish, needlefish, halfbeaks, porcupinefish, pufferfish, snappers, soldierfish, squirrelfish, triggerfish, damselfish, Maori wrasse, butterfly fish, cardinal fish, groupers, rockcods and basslets, parrotfish, surgeonfish, triggerfish and anemone fish or clown fish can all be found swimming around the coral. However, as amazing as these fish are, they don't eat food outside the coral reef so it's best if visitors don't feed them.


At first sight, coral may be believed to be just a rock on the seabed, but in actual fact it is something more fascinating. It is actually created by living animals called polyps that produce a chalky, limestone skeleton as they expand. Coral can be seen to expand when the polyps multiply and divide in a technique known as budding.

Polyps take their nourishment from planktonic4 prey, including simple single-celled algae5 called zooxanthellae6(pronounced zoo-zan-thelly). Coral that lives off zooxanthellae expands faster than that which doesn't. Coral comes in various colours, shapes and sizes. Some agglomerations create features such as bommies7 and drop-off cliffs8. Coral displays many vibrant colours as a result of live coral and its algae that can reach an age of hundreds of years. To see these wonderful colours it is best to view the coral at night using a halogen lamp shone from above. Every year, around the full moon in November, the sea spreading up the reef from Lady Elliot Island in the south gradually turns pink. This is due to 135 species of hard coral releasing their eggs and sperm for fertilisation. It takes about two weeks for coral to reproduce before the water appears clean again.

Great Barrier Reef Past and Present

Historically, the Great Barrier Reef has caused problems for many a ship, dating back to 1770 when Captain James Cook bumped into it in the Endeavour. This event lead to Cooktown being founded. The most famous wreck to have occurred due to the existence of the Great Barrier Reef is that of HMS Pandora in 1791, which is still being examined today. Of course, the reef has been known to the aboriginal people for many millennia: they possibly encountered the reef as long ago as 60,000 BC, at about the time when the reef first started to form. The aboriginals used the reef to sustain themselves as well as others that lived off it; today they help the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority maintain this natural beauty. The GBRMPA was established in 1975. It is the largest marine park in the world and is funded by Australian and Queensland Governments. The latter also oversees the Park Authority and ensures that the Reef is used appropriately, protected and understood by visitors.

Introduction to The Reef

Located in the Coral Sea off the north-east coast of Australia, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the greatest natural wonders of the world and in 1981 was listed as a World Heritage site. It measures 348,700 square kilometres in area and is about 2,300 kilometres long, running from just north of Bundaberg to the tip of the Cape York Peninsula. The Great Barrier Reef contains over 3,000 reefs, which vary in size from 1 hectare to over 10,000. It also includes 760 fringing reefs, 300 coral cays and 618 continental islands. As the world's largest coral reef ecosystem, the Great Barrier Reef is home to a large population of dugong, 1,500 species of fish, 400 species of coral, 4,000 species of mollusc, 500 species of seaweed, 215 species of bird, 16 species of sea snake and six species of sea turtle.