Responsible tourism: Great Barrier Reef cruise in Australia
The smaller size of our ship and the smaller passenger numbers ensures that any detrimental social and environmental impacts are minimised. Most tourists to the Great Barrier Reef stay (and often don’t leave) in the Cairns area and in a few other restricted locations, so by enabling our passengers to visit some different areas without putting any strain on local amenities, we are spreading the financial benefits and the load of our visit.
The ship’s owners take their responsibilities to the environment very seriously and are proud to be acknowledged as an ecotourism certified operator through the world-leading Ecotourism Australia organisation.
In March 2015 the ship was completely refitted with new, state-of-the-art engines. These new whisper-quiet engines have been developed to minimise emissions and improve fuel efficiency, whilst providing increased power and greater stability
The food on board is bought locally; Queensland is blessed with being, in parts, very fertile and ideal for growing fruit and vegetables. Fish is locally abundant, and meat is a major local industry, so all the food is very locally sourced.
Grey and brown water waste are both held in on board tanks until the vessel returns to port, where they are emptied and the waste is treated. Any rubbish generated during the cruise is similarly held on board until the vessel returns to port where it is recycled if possible.
We encourage all our passengers to engage with the local community on a social and economic level to ensure that this tourism has a benefit to both the visitors and the hosts. By visiting some of the more outlying communities we will spread the financial benefit of our visit to some rarely visited areas of the country.
These Great Barrier Reef cruises have an on board fully qualified Marine Biologist who will ensure you gain a full appreciation of the ‘Reef’, rainforest and tropical islands of this World Heritage-listed environment. The Marine Biologist provides huge amounts of information about the coral, flora and fauna of the local area, what threats it faces and how to preserve it. You also have the option to join a qualified naturalist on guided walks through the rainforests where they will inform anyone who wants to listen about the spectacular wildlife and the threats it faces. The Marine Biologist and the naturalist will also be available for on board discussions and occasional talks about their respective subjects.
We will endeavour to maximise the benefits of tourism and to minimise or eradicate any downside, socially, environmentally & economically.