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The Great Barrier Reef – Australia Destinations

The Great Barrier Reef isn’t one reef but a chain of coral reefs extending from north-east of Bundaberg all the way to Cape York.

Diving and snorkeling opportunities abound on the Great Barrier Reef and you’ll find some of the clearest and most pristine diving in the world. There are literally hundreds of islands to visit, some with resorts but most untouched by development.

UNESCO designated the Great Barrier Reef a World Heritage Site in 1981 and more than one million people a year visit the reef. Be mindful of the delicate ecosystems while visiting the reef: damaging or stealing from the reef not only ruins it for people to come, but you may end up with a huge fine.

Hundreds of islands dot the reef and a popular spot for cashed-up tourists and backpackers alike is Airlie Beach and the Whitsunday Islands. Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island is regularly voted one of the top beaches in the world.

If you ever get sick of the reef, catch a boat over to the mainland and the tropical north: the wettest part of Australia. Tropical rainforest can be found at regular intervals along the coast. The resort town of Port Douglas is a popular destination for celebrities including former US President Bill Clinton; many films are shot on location around the Port Douglas area.

Jamie McGraw