OceanQuest Overnight (Liveaboard) Experience


TRAVEL UPDATE: All overnight trips are currently on hold until 1st November 2020

Our liveaboard vessel OceanQuest is the ultimate Great Barrier Reef overnight experience from Cairns. Spend your days and nights exploring the best outer Great Barrier Reef dive sites aboard our floating accommodation, with snorkel, intro dive and certified dive options available.

When just one day at the reef isn’t enough, an overnight trip from Cairns gives you all the time you need. Visit our colourful dive and snorkel sites during the day, and at night everything from the air conditioned cabins with en suites, lounge and bar, are designed for your comfort.

Our three-deck, 35m catamaran is purpose built for a top class dive holiday, with a spacious dive deck, large open sundecks and hot, fresh water showers. All delicious meals are prepared by our onboard chef, including hearty buffet breakfasts and lunches and plated dinners. Enjoy a well-deserved dessert treat after your day in the water!

Transfers to OceanQuest leave daily from its sister vessel, SeaQuest, so you can experience other stunning dive and snorkel locations on the way before checking in and beginning your overnight experience.

Overnight (liveaboard) Great Barrier Reef trips from Cairns are truly a remarkable adventure. With more than 14 permanent moorings at Saxon and Norman reefs, and selected sites at Hastings Reef, snorkellers and divers of all levels can glimpse the incredible diversity of marine life from early morning to night.

At night, relax in the lounge and bar. Or if you’re keen for more undersea adventures, try a unique night dive experience like Sharks in the Dark or Fluoro Diving to make your time on board our floating reef hotel truly unforgettable.

An overnight experience is also the perfect time to complete your practical dive training at the outer Great Barrier Reef. With our expert dive instructors, you’ll be in the best possible hands.

Departure/Return Location:

Divers Den Dive Shop, 319 Draper St, Cairns


Transfer vessel departs 8.30am, returns 5pm daily

Dive sites:

Norman Reef / Saxon Reef / Hastings Reef

Accommodation Options:

OceanQuest has 18 twin cabins and four double cabins. All cabins are air conditioned with en suite bathrooms.


  • Daily departures with transfers from sister vessel SeaQuest
  • Flexible itineraries
  • Free transfer from Cairns City accommodation to Draper St check-in
  • Snorkelling (included for all passengers)
  • Snorkelling and scuba equipment, including dive computer and air fills, with full tuition
  • All meals on board, plus chilled drinking water, tea and coffee

Choose Your Activity

Great Barrier Reef Guided Snorkel Tour

OceanQuest Snorkelling

Snorkel some of the reef's best sites, then stay overnight and do it all again tomorrow

More info Book now

OceanQuest Intro Diving

Learn to dive on an overnight trip and enjoy extra opportunities to practise your new scuba skills

More info Book now

OceanQuest Certified Diving

For the ultimate Great Barrier Reef dive trip, choose our liveaboard vessel with its exclusive dive experiences

More info Book now
Sharks in the Dark

Sharks in the Dark

Take a night dive from our overnight vessel and encounter friendly reef sharks and other critters

More info
Great Barrier Reef Fluoro Dive Experience

Fluoro Diving

With our special equipment you'll see coral and marine life like never before - an amazing night dive experience

More info
Minke Whale Expeditions from Cairns

Minke Whale Expeditions from Cairns

Join our annual overnight trips for close up interactions with inquisitive dwarf minke whales

More info Book now

Great Barrier Reef Coral Spawning Expeditions

Annual expeditions to see corals reproduce in a spectacular synchronised display

More info


3 day 2 night example itinerary - Day 1


7.30-8am: Pick up from your city accommodation (if booked) and check in at our dive centre on Draper Street, before transferring to the marina

8.30am: Set off from Cairns Marina on board SeaQuest, our fast and modern transfer boat, for the 90 minute transfer to the Outer Barrier Reef. Select your equipment and receive in depth safety briefings

10am: Arrive at the reef for your first intro dive

12pm: Enjoy lunch while we move to our second dive site

12:30pm: Second dive or snorkel opportunity

2.30pm: Transfer to OceanQuest and settle into your cabin. During the afternoon you’ll have the opportunity for more snorkelling or diving, and to relax on board

6pm: Dinner is served!

6.30pm: Gear up for one of our unique liveaboard dive experiences, or simply chill out on board

8pm: Dessert is served

10.30pm: Bar closes

Day 2

7.30am: Breakfast is served, buffet-style

8.30am: First dive and snorkel session

10.30am: Second dive and snorkel session

12.30pm: Lunch is served

3.30pm: Third dive and snorkel session

6pm: Dinner

6.30pm: Briefing and night dive/sharks in the dark/fluoro dive

8pm: Dessert

10.30pm: Bar closes

Day 3

7.30am: Breakfast

8.30am: Dive/snorkel session

10.30am: Dive snorkel session

12pm: Check out

12.30pm: One final lunch before you go…

3pm: Depart Outer Barrier Reef

5pm (approx): Return to your accommodation

Additional info


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
  • Reef and Port Authority charges ($20 per person per day)

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



“We stayed on OceanQuest for 2 nights and 3 days and it was truly an unforgettable experience. The staff were amazing – extremely friendly and professional at all times. The trip was well organised and the diving/snorkel spots were amazing. The boat itself was really clean and comfortable.”

– Hayley


“We wish we could’ve stayed one more night on the overnight liveaboard. The staff were really friendly and made it super enjoyable – Tobi was a great instructor – he ensured we were safe but also independent. I got my open water cert thanks to his good training. The rooms and food were great. I look forward to making it back one day.”

– Jessica

Medical and Altitude Info

All introductory scuba participants must meet medical questionnaire requirements and 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. This includes going to the Atherton Tablelands (a popular local scenic attraction), so be careful if booking tours to follow your dive trip. Under normal circumstances, you should be out of the water on your last dive at 12pm (midday).