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Diving is an absolute must here.
Diving is an absolute must here.
Sorrel is loving this.
Hanging out on Lady Elliot Island.

Lady Elliot Diving

Thursday, February 28, 2002
How does snorkelling or diving right off the beach sound? Well, pack the swimmers, sunblock and underwater camera, because we're going diving.

Lady Elliot is the Barrier Reef's southern-most coral cay, and is part of the Capricorn Bunker Group. It is World Heritage listed and only 140 people are allowed on the island at any one time. It is a place of environmentally friendly practises where nothing is released into the ocean. This has helped enormously with the preservation of coral and marine life.

It is believed the 42-hectare island was formed around 6000 years ago when coral began to form above sea level. It became a large sandbank where seed-carrying birds landed, which accounts for the vegetation there today.

Lady Elliot is accessible only by plane as it is completely surrounded by reef. The advantage of the reef is that you can snorkel or dive right from the beach.

It's the sort of place where you set your own agenda — catching up on all those books, if you want, or joining in the activities the island has to offer. There's archery, volleyball, badminton, table tennis, darts and quizzes.

There are three types of accommodation, all with million-dollar views. There are 14 Tent Cabins that each have four bunk beds, polished floorboards, power and lighting. Linen is supplied, and there are share facilities close by.

There are 21 Reef Units that sleep up to four people in each. They have a double bed and bunks, or just double bed, balconies, fans and bathroom facilities.

And there are just five Island Suites, with one or two bedrooms, balconies, refrigerator and fan.

There are no telephones, radios or television and mobile phones won't work there.

Diving and snorkelling are the main activities, and the shop can give lessons, as well as hire gear and boats to the top sites. There are 10 popular dives, which are weather dependent. You will see manta rays, cow tail rays, moray eels, wobbegongs, leopard sharks and tawny nurse sharks.

Trips in glass-bottomed boats are popular, especially for those who cannot swim as they still get to enjoy the beauty of underwater life. At low tide, there is a guided reef walk, but remember to pack suitable shoes — that coral can cut. You can also visit the disused lighthouse, which was built in 1873 (the one built in 1872 blew down).

From September to March, around 50,000 birds of 60 varieties arrive, making Lady Elliot a perfect place for birdwatchers. After coral spawning in November, the island becomes a turtle rookery, and in January the hatchlings make their way from the eggs to the ocean.

The poolside bar serves snacks and drinks through the day, and the Lagoon Bar is in the dining room.

The Bistro serves drinks and snacks and lunch all day and dinner and breakfast are served in the dining room.


A 25-minute flight from Bundaberg.


Lady Elliot accommodation starts at $140 per person, twin- share, including breakfast, dinner and snorkel hire.
Please note prices are valid at time of transmission and to the best of our knowledge are inclusive of GST.

More information

Lady Elliot Island
Ph: 1800 072 200 Fax: (07) 4125 5778

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