Six day PADI Open Water & Advanced Course


This course is currently unavailable.

With nine training dives and six extra fun dives, this Great Barrier Reef dive course sets you up to continue your diving adventures around the world.

Spend two days tackling the theory and pool training at our five star facility, then head to the outer reef for a four-day three-night stay on board our liveaboard vessel OceanQuest.

During your course you’ll pack in as many as 15 dives (including two at night). Explore the Great Barrier Reef and see everything from colourful corals, anemones, Nemos, sharks, rays, turtles and nudibranchs at our outer reef dive sites, while you gain skills and experience as a scuba diver.

By the end of your six-day dive course you’ll have not only your PADI Open Water Diver certification but also your PADI Advanced Open Water certification, meaning you’ll be qualified to explore depths of up to 30m.

Your Advanced Course will introduce you to some of PADI’s extra dive activities. During your course you will choose one of these as your elective module, a chance to find out about the type of diving you’re passionate about – from a fish identification dive to a boat or photography dive. This will be your final dive of the course and can be chosen on board after discussion with your PADI instructor.

In between dives, relax in comfort on board OceanQuest – soak up the sun and the views on deck, fuel up for your next dive with tasty meals prepared by our onboard chef and sleep soundly in your air-conditioned cabin with full ensuite.


Six Days

Course Outline:

Two days of pool & theory, four days / three nights on a Great Barrier Reef liveaboard


  • All PADI materials
  • All dive and snorkel equipment, including air fills, and full tuition
  • Fresh chilled water, tea and coffee
  • Two outer reef locations per day
  • All meals on board
  • Transfers from Cairns city accommodation

Book now

6 Day (3 Nights on OceanQuest) - currently unavailable

PADI Open Water & Advanced certs
Twin Cabin per person
Double Cabin per person

Other languages available

German Every Monday
Chinese Every Wednesday
Japanese Every Saturday

​Includes all equipment and tuition. Prices valid from 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021. Taxes/Levies are per person, per day (subject to change without notice). Fee includes: Environmental Management Charge (EMC) $7.00. Fuel, Port, and Administration Charges $13.00.


Day One

Pool & Theory

9am: Pick up from Cairns city accommodation

Morning: Meet your instructor, complete paperwork and begin dive theory

Lunch is not included, but you can bring a packed lunch or there are plenty of places to eat nearby.

Afternoon: Begin your scuba skills training in the pool

5.15pm: Tread water test

5.30pm: Drop off at Cairns city accommodation

Day Two

Pool & Theory

9am: Pick up from Cairns city accommodation

Morning: Continue scuba skills in the pool and complete 200m swim test. Don your wetsuit and equipment for more skills training.

Lunch is not included, but you can bring a packed lunch or there are plenty of places to eat nearby.

Afternoon: Finish and review scuba theory, finish with a multiple choice exam.

5.30pm: Drop off at Cairns city accommodation

Day Three

Great Barrier Reef (overnight)

7.30am: Pick up from your accommodation and check in at our dive centre. You can store your larger bags with us before we take you to the Cairns Marina and our transfer vessel SeaQuest.

8.30am: Set off for a 90 minute trip to the reef. On arrival you’ll complete your first of two Open Water training dives, with a break for lunch in between.

2.30pm: Transfer to OceanQuest, your home for the next few days. Our crew will check you in, allocate your rooms, and fully brief you on the adventure to come.

3.30pm: Time for your third training dive of the Open Water course. Well done – you’re almost finished!

6pm: Our onboard chef has dinner covered, leaving you time to sit back and enjoy the sunset.

Once the sun goes down, take the opportunity to try out our unique liveaboard activity – Sharks in the Dark. Grab a snorkel and watch these friendly creatures from the dive platform or on deck.

8pm: Dessert

10.30pm: Bar closes

Day Four

Great Barrier Reef (overnight)

7.30am: Wake up with the Great Barrier Reef! Nothing beats watching the sunrise from a sun lounger – except the delicious hot breakfast that follows.

Then it’s time for your fourth and final dive of the Open Water course. Congratulations, you’re now officially a PADI Open Water Diver!

Celebrate with your first pleasure dive, exploring the treasures of the reef as a qualified diver for the first time, before breaking for lunch.

In the afternoon, complete a Peak Performance Buoyancy dive and fine-tune your buoyancy skills.

6pm: Dinner

6.30pm: Head back into the water for night dive training. Your instructor will guide you through the skills needed to dive in the dark, something that will stand you in good stead for future explorations.

8pm: Dessert

10.30pm: Bar closes

Day Five

Great Barrier Reef (overnight)

Fuel up at breakfast, because there’s plenty of diving to be done today! During the morning you’ll do your first deep dive down to 25-30m, plus a navigation dive. This will teach you techniques like observing features and the surface, and compass use to find your way beneath the waves.

After lunch you’ll have either a fun dive to test out your skills, or your final training dive (depending on instructor availability).

A delicious buffet dinner follows, before your final advanced course night dive.

Day Six

Great Barrier Reef

Make the most of the views this morning, as it’s your last day out on the reef.

During the morning you’ll have two last dives – depending on instructor availability these will either be fun dives or your final training dive. Congratulations, you are now an Advanced Open Water diver, affectionately known as AOW!

Then it’s time for one last lunch and to pack your belongings.

At 2.30pm you’ll board our transfer vessel and head back to Cairns, arriving around 4.30pm and being transferred to your accommodation by 5pm.

Additional info

Prerequisites and forms

  • Minimum age 12
  • Completed Self Assessed Medical Declaration
  • Medical certificate if required
  • Ability to pass a 200m swim and 10 minute treading water test


  • Snacks and beverages
  • Photo purchases
  • Digital camera hire
  • Quality souvenirs
  • Northern beaches transfers $25pp

What to bring

  • Hat, sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Swimsuit and towel
  • Overnight bag with changes of clothing, including warm clothing and socks for overnight wear
  • Toiletries

Bedding and bath towels are supplied on board. Excess baggage can be stored at our Draper Street office at check in.

Medical and altitude information

All scuba participants must meet medical questionnaire requirements. Some conditions or medications may prevent you from diving.

Currently the rules state that for a single no decompression dive, you should not fly/go to altitude for at least 12 hours, or 18 hours after multiple dives. Divers Den recommends waiting a minimum 24 hours whenever possible. These are guidelines only, there is no guarantee that these recommendations will prevent decompression sickness. There are no current guidelines regarding diving after flying.

Altitude is defined as 300m/1000ft above sea level. Certain other tourist attractions around Cairns and Tropical North Queensland involve travelling to altitude. These include the Atherton Tablelands and the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, so we recommend a gap between booking these experiences and any dive course or trip. Under normal circumstances, you should be out of the water on your last dive by 12pm (midday).



“Had an absolute blast doing my Open Water and Advanced course on board OceanQuest – it was everything I dreamed it would be on the Great Barrier Reef. My incredible instructors were amazingly knowledgeable Everyone was so helpful and welcoming. Thanks so much, I will definitely be back again!”

– Alex