Wet suits for Reef snorkel trip

Are wet suits provided or rentable for the Great Barrier Reef snorkel trip? Anyone know? Going in November!

Comments

  • Hi Gecko,

    I'm no expert on these things, but when I did a similar reef excursion a few years ago no one wore wet suits for the snorkelling ... just their bathers and mask! I'm guessing this is because you will be enjoying tropical waters, making wet suits redundant .... It might be different if you were using diving gear and tanks and going down to greater depths.

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • When we did this trip a few years ago most of us who went in the water rented bright blue Lycra suits to protect us from possible jellyfish stings. They covered us from head to toe, and, frankly, we looked like a bunch of smurfs! I don' think they were particularly buoyant, but they did add a layer of warmth which was okay as it was a cloudy day. I don't recall seeing anyone in a wetsuit.
  • We were on the trip this past March. The bright blue Lycra suits did cover us from head to toe...funny pictures to look at later!! Everyone who went in the water wore them. It wasn't jellyfish season, but it was still suggested that we wear them and everyone took that suggestion. There was no cost for using the lycra suits, masks, or snorkels. If you have Lisa T. as your director you are in for an enthusiastic, hard-working, very pleasant, and knowledgeable person (as most of the Tour Directors are from our experiences). Enjoy!!
  • Smurfs, huh? :))))) My guess is, out of stinger season, they are to make it easier for you to be seen when in the water by the observers on the boat. No need to elaborate.

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • Uh, oh! Logically, if we were easy to spot by the observers, does it also mean we were possible "eye candy" for predators lurking about??? Yikes, Jan! I never thought of that!! In spite of our appearance (we do have some fabulous photos of us in our outfits) the "Grand..." trip was one of our all time favorites!!
    Joyce
  • edited July 2013
    Hi Joyce,

    Hand on heart, this is absolutely serious. No joking about this. A few years ago a couple was left behind on a snorkelling trip, due, as I recall the coroner saying, to the incompetence of the boat's crew in not keeping a proper look out and not taking an accurate head count. I suspect that one way to keep a count of the people in the water is to make them really stand out. Plus, if it is stinger season, keep you bite free. My own trip to the reef was prior to this tragedy, so I only saw standard coloured, non-smurf people splashing about in the water. I remained safely dry! ;)

    So being blue is a small price to pay for being obvious ... and staying safe. I have no information as to the preferences of swimming predators, but I have certainly never heard of a blue person being taken by a shark. And then there are the happy snaps. What's not to like! We are all blue. So this must be the reef part! (Now, that was a joke.;))

    Glad you had a great time and lived through all our bitey things to tell the tale!!

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • I was on the trip in 2011. Yes they provide wet suits for diving. These are thicker than the lycra suits the snorkelers get. If you are not certified, they have a basic dive that gets you going. If you are certified, bring your certification and you can do advance dives. Go to the Quicksilver website for all the info.
    Have fun!!
  • This might be a silly question, but do they provide life jackets for the snorkeling? I wouldn't be comfortable going without one.
  • 40MeMe40 wrote:
    This might be a silly question, but do they provide life jackets for the snorkeling? I wouldn't be comfortable going without one.
    Did you ever get a response to the life jacket question ?
  • We went in August, so it was winter there. We were provided with wetsuits and life jackets. We had our photos taken by a professional photographer there and we used it for the back cover of our photo album, it was a great experience, we've done a lot of snorkeling before, so we were comfortable in the water. If you don't snorkel there is a lovely little sub you can take a ride in to see exactly the same wildlife you see when you are snorkeling
  • edited March 2014
    I haven't been on this trip so don't know the specifics of where you dive/snorkel- sandy areas or over deep or shallow, live coral reefs, with current and or wave action, etc.

    I have snorkeled and scuba dived in most parts of the world. Wet suits and lycra warm water suits do more than keep you warm and protect you from floating jelly fish and nettles.

    Many varieties of coral have secondary organisms growing on them that are often difficult to see or distinguish from their host- one of those is called "Fire Coral" and for good reason! While it may not cause as much pain as some jelly fish or Portuguese Man of War, it can be extremely uncomfortable, especially if it contacts soft fleshy area of your body. Also, coral can be very sharp. If there is any current or wave action it may be difficult to avoid bumping into coral. Unless you plan to stay completely clear of coral and always float on the surface, I recommend you wear one of the suits depending on the season and water temp. Wearing gloves is another good idea if you plan short descents to the bottom to view or take close-up photos of coral and fish.

    Finally, will you have a tan before you go and how is your tolerance to sun? If you spend any amount of time snorkeling where you will spend most of the time face down at the surface, you will be exposing your (pastie white?) back, and the backs of your neck, arms, and legs to the rays of the sun. A T-shirt, unless SP rated, won't help much. Depending on the season and length of exposure you could receive quite a sunburn.

    Been there done all of that! Example- many years ago, I was snorkeling in Oahu's Hanama Bay. It was a bit windy and rough at the mouth of the bay (an ancient caldera) so I was snorkeling over the reef, fairly close to shore when something brushed against my forehead and cheek. I immediately experienced extreme pain- it felt like someone had slashed my face with a partially sharpened serrated knife- really!!! I immediately swam ashore and was treated by a lifeguard who rubbed smelling salt on the wound (ammonia is supposed to help). It took a day and a half for the pain to diminish and over a week for the red welt to disappear. I never saw what got me but we surmised it was a short piece of stinging cell ladden tentacle that had broken off a Portuguese Man of War in the rough water and rocks near the mouth of the bay. The Portuguese man-o-war can be found around the world and is most common in the Austral summer months in shallow, coastal waters, and it is not uncommon to find thousands of Portuguese man-o- war floating in groups off the popular surfing beaches in Queensland, Australia. Diving is great, have fun, but be careful!
  • AlanS wrote:
    The Portuguese man-o-war can be found around the world and is most common in the Austral summer months in shallow, coastal waters, and it is not uncommon to find thousands of Portuguese man-o- war floating in groups off the popular surfing beaches in Queensland, Australia. Diving is great, have fun, but be careful!

    Since the US sense of humour is very different to mine, I will not make light of the instant relief available … Those who know … may fill in the blanks. I am sensible to US sensibilities. (However much I bury this knowledge, it is there!)

    Alan knows what he's talking about, so listen to him. (I only live here … what would I know!)

    Cheers,

    Jan
  • jdurkin wrote:
    Since the US sense of humour is very different to mine, I will not make light of the instant relief available … Those who know … may fill in the blanks. I am sensible to US sensibilities. (However much I bury this knowledge, it is there!)

    Alan knows what he's talking about, so listen to him. (I only live here … what would I know!)

    Cheers,

    Jan

    Am I thinking what you are thinking about the instant relief available? Is it the same as one of the supposed treatments for Athlete's foot?


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  • Athlete's foot! Surely not! :-0 ….I know, don't call me Shirley……..
  • We are on the tour for December 1, 2014. Being a suba diver, I say the wet suits would be a must because of the potential jelly fish. You don not want to be suffering from a jelly fish sting and spoil your trip. I have been there, a jellyfish sting is no fun.

    Bill
  • Gecko wrote:
    Are wet suits provided or rentable for the Great Barrier Reef snorkel trip? Anyone know? Going in November!

    Our Great Barrier reef excursion boat supplied the lycra wet suits (black only, no more blue) and Tauck picked up the rental charge. Masks, fins and snorkels are provided for free. We brought our own snorkels and masks because we already had them, but there was plently of equipment available for all
  • Karen C wrote:
    I was on the trip in 2011. Yes they provide wet suits for diving. These are thicker than the lycra suits the snorkelers get. If you are not certified, they have a basic dive that gets you going. If you are certified, bring your certification and you can do advance dives. Go to the Quicksilver website for all the info.
    Have fun!!

    How did you arrange for doing a scuba trip instead of the snorkeling option? Do they provide all equipment?
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