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Duration 8 Nights

Great Barrier Reef Snapshot

Townsville to Brisbane
Great Barrier Reef Cruise to Cairns
Gold Fish at Gold Coast - True North

Great Barrier Reef Snapshot 2024

Start your adventure in Townsville

Visit iconic destinations such as Whitehaven Beach, the Whitsundays and Moreton Island. Drink-in some of Australia’s most treasured tropical island scenery and snorkel the revered Great Barrier Reef. Try your hand at catching a monster mud crab or something even more delectable for the dining salon! Sample the chef’s beach-cooked delights and indulge with a glass of champagne as the sun sets on beautiful Whitehaven Beach. Take a dive on the magnificent Flinders reef, and leave your journey truly understanding why The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park is one of the natural wonders of the world.

night 01
Welcome Aboard

Welcome Aboard

Your “welcome aboard” the TRUE NORTH is in Townsville, the gateway to some of the best rainforest areas in Australia and, the Great Barrier Reef! Embarkation is 1700 hours – time for a cocktail with your fellow adventurers before departure at approximately 1800. Dinner is served shortly after leaving port and then it’s an overnight steam to Hinchinbrook Island.

day 01
Cape Bowling Green

Cape Bowling Green

Cape Bowling Green is the longest spit in Australia visited by all manner of wildlife including dingoes. At the base of the spit, Cape Bowling Green Lighthouse guides seafarers around the rocky coastline.

Spend the morning in the adventure boats sightseeing, fishing and crabbing in the waters surrounding this sandy beach.

Divers will be in for a treat! Considered one of the world’s top dive sites, the shipwreck of SS Yongala has become an artificial reef, teeming with fish and coral species. Larger marine life such as turtles, rays and schools of giant trevally circle the mostly intact wreck.

The helicopter will offer more spectacular views and there will be more fishing, snorkelling and diving action at Old Reef before we re-join the TRUE NORTH for another perfect night in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

day 02
The Whitsundays

The Whitsundays

Today we visit one of North Queensland’s iconic destinations – the Whitsundays! In the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, these group of 70-odd tropical islands are highly sort after holiday hot spots – yet TRUE NORTH can access those less- explored sites.

An untouched paradise to explore by foot, snorkel and aquatic toy! Join crew ashore to try your hand at paddling a kayak or stand up board. Take a morning stroll along the white silica sands of Whitehaven Beach or, enjoy a more strenuous endeavour to see the lookout.

Those in the helicopter will witness the naturally forming artwork as the tides swirl a myriad of colour in the shallow waters of the picturesque cove. The region is renowned for its extraordinary diversity of underwater life and highly regarded for both snorkelling and diving. A bucket list activity not to be missed.

When you’re not on excursion, relax onboard TRUE NORTH and indulge in our renowned cuisine – the alfresco bar and lounge will definitely be the spot to admire this destinations unblemished beauty at sunset.

day 03
Percy Islands

Percy Islands

This morning we wake in the Percy Islands. These pristine islands off the coast between Mackay and Rockhampton are uninhabited and their unspoilt environment protected within national and conservation parks.

There is numerous snorkelling and dive sites in this area and the avid angler has the opportunity to target pelagic species such as Spanish mackerel and giant trevally.

The naturalist will be taking the sightseeing tender to explore the islands numerous coves and fringing reefs and the helicopter will take to the skies to put it all into perspective!

By sunset, the TRUE NORTH chefs will be preparing a sumptuous goat stew on the secluded beach while guests indulge in a refreshing drink and soak up the setting sun!

day 04
Tropical Paradise

Tropical Paradise

Another day in tropical paradise as we explore both above and below the water!

The tidal waters of Island Head Creek are popular mating grounds for green turtle and, they are also home to arguably the biggest mud crabs in Australia! Join the adventure boats and drop a net in the mangroves. If lady luck is on your side, you might just add a hand- sized claw of delectable crab to tonight’s sunset fare!

Other day five highlights will include snorkelling and diving over pristine reefs, catching a monster tuna or a leisurely wonder along an endless sandy beach.

And, as you’ve seen it every other manner, you can’t miss seeing this coastline from the air! The Hinterland runs along the Eastern Coastline - crystal blue water on one side and World Heritage listed rainforest on the other. The picturesque Great Dividing Range is the distinct mountainous range stretching as far as the eye can see and overgrown with Gondwana rainforest.

day 05
The Tropic of Capricorn

The Tropic of Capricorn

Lady Elliot Island is beckoning us, laying in the highly protected “Green Zone”. A heli flight will guarantee spotting any one of the 700 species of manta rays. Divers and snorkellers will be spoilt for choice as the Island’s reefs support over 1,200 species of marine life. A walking tour will delight: Lady Elliot has been a conservation success for over 50 years. Two days in this stunning region is never enough!

day 06
Moreton Island

Moreton Island

Around Moreton Island, 15 ships were deliberately sunk to create a break water for the smaller vessels and an amazing man-made reef structure for snorkelers and divers to delight! The naturalist will lead a sightsee exploration in the adventure boats and the crew will join you for a walk to the local lighthouse. The boards will be out to ride the waves and the shore party will be set up.

Divers will don masks and BCD’s to explore the HMAS Brisbane wreck and the helicopter will provide more opportunity for splendour from above!

day 07
Flinders Reef

Flinders Reef

It’s your last day onboard so squeeze in as much as you can! Today we prepare to dive the immaculate Flinders Reef, a protected marine sanctuary in the Moreton Bay Marine Park, and one of Queensland’s most beautiful dive sites. The walls of this stunning reef are covered in over one hundred coral species, as well as soft corals, gorgonians and sponges. Meanwhile, the heli will set out to explore Moreton Bay’s secluded white sand beaches and hidden coves.

We finish the adventure with stunning sunset drinks on the beach and a farewell dinner to remember!

day 08
Transfer to Brisbane

Transfer to Brisbane

The TRUE NORTH will make its way into Brisbane for 0800hrs disembarkation.

True North II

Ocean Class $11,995
River Class $14,995
Explorer Class $16,995
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Experience the adventure

True North Tales

Returning to International

True North’s founding director Craig Howson and managing director Chad Avenell, recently met with local representatives ahead of recommencing Indonesian itineraries in 2023. Watch the video above to discover how True North ensures smooth operation well in advance of departure.

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True North Adventure Cruises - has sailed into 30 years of continuous operations. The now revered adventure-cruise operator first cruised Western Australia’s remote Kimberley coast during 1987 when founding director Craig Howson commenced fishing type charters along a coastline that was and still is largely inaccessible from land.

The Helicopter

Adding another dimension to the adventure, most cruise options on the TRUE NORTH feature an on-board helicopter! Carrying guests in air conditioned comfort, the ship’s helicopter provides unique opportunity to witness grandeur; unique opportunity to fish billabongs that have never been fished; unique opportunity to discover your very own wilderness!

Myles Pollard's Fishing Adventure

There is nothing better than a day out on the water, especially when the fish are biting! Fishing on-board the TRUE NORTH is a much-favoured activity both with guests who have never picked up a rod before and, with those who have "caught them all!” Our guides encourage everybody on-board to “give it a go” and the TRUE NORTH’s multiple adventure boats never fail to bring back a swag of ‘fishing tales’! Stories about the ladies who out-fish the boys are pretty common, humorous equipment failures also come to note on a regular basis, then there are the ‘birthday fish’, the ‘monster fish’ and of course, the ones that got away! Our guides have seen and heard it all! Watch the video to find out more about actor Myles Pollard's fishing adventure!

TRUE NORTH Impresses Again

The TRUE NORTH has once again impressed on the world stage coming second in the 2020 Traveller Made Brand Storytelling competition. Traveller Made is Europe’s largest travel consortium and its members represent the very best in luxury travel providers and suppliers. The group’s inaugural Brand Storytelling competition was an opportunity for leading travel brand’s to showcase “the story behind their brand” and, the competition attracted entries from some of the world’s most respected travel brands. In such esteemed company, True North’s marketing team was especially pleased to receive this additional acknowledgement.

Adventure En Plein Air

West Australian artist Jacob 'Shakey' Butler joined the TRUE NORTH earlier this season and discovered the Kimberley's raw beauty. As the artist in residence, Jacob set up his canvas on remote beaches, beside freshwater billabongs and on-deck surrounded by pindan-coloured gorges. Watch the video above to hear Jacob describing how the Kimberley inspires the art of adventure.

Catriona Rowntree Talks With Craig Howson

A commonly asked question is “When is the best time to see the Kimberley?” And the answer is “The Kimberley is always at its best!” However certain times of the year can make it easier to satisfy particular interest. For example, if you would like to see plenty of whale action then departures in August and September are definitely for you! From late July humpback and southern right whales reach the Kimberley after swimming-up the west coast to reach breeding grounds in the north and it’s very common for guests to get great views of whales breaching and basking on the surface.

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The True North Experience

We curate activity-based itineraries that are designed to satisfy the world’s most discerning travellers. We specifically exclude sea-days and feature unparalleled access to stunning coastal environments and, unequalled opportunity to truly experience the destination.

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