Yasmin De Souza: Island Escape

bcgi-snorkellers-hero-500x500A few weeks ago before this semester’s work really picked up, some friends and I went to Fitzroy Island to snorkel and relax on the beaches. Fitzroy is one of the many islands in the cairns area students can visit to take in the natural sights and go snorkeling or scuba diving.

We woke up bright and early on a Saturday morning and went to the Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal where we purchased some ferry passes and were off for the day. If you’re a student you get a discount on the passes, so don’t forget to always carry your ID with you! The ride to Fitzroy is about 45 minutes long so I suggest bringing some music to listen to unless you’re a talker like me and like to make conversation with friends.

Once we docked at the island, we immediately headed off to Nudey Beach, a little secluded beach on the south western side of the island. It’s about a 1.8 km walk through the forest to get to this beautiful location. What’s different about this beach is that it’s partially covered in sand,unlike the rest of the shores of the island which are covered in dead coral.

The islands near Cairns are great places to go snorkeling so we quickly settled down on Nudey Beach and grabbed our snorkeling gear to take advantage of the beautiful weather and water. We saw a turtle, a variety of fish, and my favorite sighting of the day, a bumphead parrotfish! Depending on the season, there can be whale sightings nearby as well. After snorkeling we relaxed on the beach and got some tanning in.

Later on we grabbed some lunch at the restaurant on the island and then headed back for some more snorkeling before the ferry returned to pick up tourists. There’s so much to do on Fitzroy besides playing on the beach. There are some hiking trails that take about an hour to complete so more than one trip to Fitzroy may be necessary to really explore the island. Generally, the ferries leave Cairns around 8 am and leave Fitzroy around 5, depending on which ferry company you purchase passes with.

Overall it’s a great island that I suggest everyone visit at least once when touring Cairns!

Until next post!

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