Heron Island Trip Feb 2022

Heron Island Trip 5-12 February 2022 (max 16 pax)

Only 2 spots remaining!

For our second domestic trip of 2021-22, we will be going to Heron Island in February 2022 during the turtle hatching season!

Located in the Southern Great Barrier Reef, Heron Island is surrounded by a shallow lagoon and beautiful fringing reef. At signature sites such as Pam’s Point and Heron Bommie, expect to see large forests of branching corals teeming with clouds of reef fish, and bigger creatures including rays, turtles and black tip reef sharks.

The island is also home to a University of Queensland research centre studying, amongst several projects, coral resilience.

Heron has over 24 dive sites, all within a 10-to-15-minute boat ride from the jetty. Temperature in February is between 26 to 28 degrees Celsius.

As well as having a very pretty fringing reef with all the usual suspects, Heron Island also has a few very special attractions. Large numbers of rays aggregate here in their 100s with several species including sting rays, eagle rays and shovel nose rays. In the shallows there are juvenile black tip reef sharks and epaulette sharks.

February is still turtle season, in fact the most interesting phase, as hatchlings make their precarious way to the sea. There is an estimated year-round resident population of between 3000 – 4000 juvenile turtles. If you’re keen to see the hatchlings as they emerge, staff could wake you up to witness the spectacle.

For more info on Heron Island, click here https://www.australia.com/en-my/places/brisbane-and-surrounds/guide-to-heron-island.html

Accommodation

We will be staying at the Heron Island Resort https://www.heronisland.com/:
Dates of stay are Sat 5th – Sat 12th February 2022. We have max 16 spots.
Turtle Rooms (located in the Pisonia Forest) with a Queen size bed, suitable for couples.
Reef Rooms (on North Beach) with a Queen size bed and Single bed, suitable for twin-sharing dive buddies.
Meals are served at Shearwater Restaurant, with drinks served at Baillie’s Bar, a large bar and lounge area.

Package includes:

  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Daily breakfast
  • 15 boat dives (3 dives/day x 5 days) inc. tanks & weights
  • Research Station Tour
  • Return ferry transfers from Gladstone

For more info: Contact Akiko at overseastrips@nautilus-scuba.net

Christmas Island Club Trips Nov Dec 2022

Christmas Island Club Trips with optional Cocos-Keeling Island add-on

November 2022 (original trip)

December 2022 (additional ‘overflow’ trip)

NOW FULL – Wait list only!

November – December coincides with the legendary red crab migration season when millions of red crabs crawl out of their forest homes to visit the shore to mate and spawn. November is also the start of the whale shark season, when the migrating whale sharks start congregating around the island.

Known as the “Galapagos of the Indian Ocean”, Christmas Island is located 1500 km off the north-west of the Australian mainland and is in fact much closer to Java, Indonesia than it is to the Australian mainland. It boasts crystal clear waters, sheer drop offs close to the shore, which attracts diverse pelagic species as well as reef fish. There is also lots to see above water, which you could explore through the optional land-based tours. For more info about Christmas Island, visit here https://www.christmas.net.au/

As the flights to Christmas Island go via Cocos-Keeling Island, for those of you who wish to do a stop-over in Cocos and dive there too, you can do a combination trip of 7 nights at each island. For more info re: Cocos-Keeling Island, visit here https://www.cocoskeelingislands.com.au/about

We have taken up all 16 spaces available at Extra Divers on Christmas Island and maximum 10 spaces at Cocos-Keeling Island.

Itinerary (for combo trip)

Thurs 17 Nov Fly Cairns to Perth; Overnight in Perth
Fri 18 Nov FRI 18 Nov 08:00 11:05 VA1913 Perth – Cocos Keeling Islands
Sat 19 Nov Diving Day 1 (10 spots available)
Sun 20 Nov Diving Day 2 (10 spots available)
Mon 21 Nov Diving Day 3 (10 spots available)
Tues 22 Nov Non-diving day
Wed 23 Nov Diving Day 4 (3 spots taken, 7 available)
Thurs 24 Nov Diving Day 5 (3 spots taken, 7 available)
OR Fly Cairns to Perth; Overnight in Perth
Fri 25 Nov FRI 25 Nov 11:50 13:55 VA1917 Cocos Keeling Islands – Christmas Island
Sat 26 Nov Diving Day 1 (16 spots available)
Sun 27 Nov Diving Day 2 (16 spots available)
Mon 28 Nov Diving Day 3 (16 spots available)
Tues 29 Nov Diving Day 4 (16 spots available)
Wed 30 Nov Diving Day 5 (16 spots available)
Thurs 1 Dec Non-diving day
Fri 2 Dec Christmas Island – PER -> CNS

Cocos-Keeling Island

7-nights accommodation, twin/double share basis in Cocos Castaway Deluxe Retreat or Cocos Bungalows.
Two guided multi-level boat dives per day x 5 days. Cylinder, weight belt, air fill; generous lunch usually enjoyed on Direction Island during a long surface interval; transportation from accommodation to boat ramp or jetty. (No transport required on Cocos as it is very small).

Christmas Island

7-nights accommodation, twin/double share basis in Divers Villa, Seaspray Villa, The Sunset or Cocos Padang Lodge.
Two guided multi-level boat dives per day x 5 days. Cylinder, weight belt, air fill; 2 tanks and weights for self-guided dives in Flying Fish Cove. Includes allowance for shared car hire collect from airport, drop off at airport.

For more info: Contact Simon at Diveplanit/Diversion Dive Travel simon@diversiondivetravel.com.au or Akiko at overseastrips@nautilus-scuba.net but sign up is via Nautilus Club only.

Coral Sea Dreaming Dive and Sail – Members Only Offer

We are excited to welcome Coral Sea Dreaming Dive and Sail (CSD) back to the club as a sponsor.  This is by way of a great Standing Offer (ie access at your convenience within the offer timeframes and criteria) so check out the details in the email that was sent to all Financial Members recently.

But first, for our newer members that may not be aware of who Coral Sea Dreaming are, then they are a small, locally family owned and operated Marine Tourism Business who has been severely affected by the recent COVID restrictions and associated lockdowns.
 
As a result, they have plenty of trips with availability coming up and are excited to extend this unbeatable deal to financial members.  CSD are offering a great deal to Nautilus Club Members, family and close friends.  This is a massive saving of their RRP and includes up to 5 FREE SCUBA DIVES!
Upgrade to Private Double cabin is available for a very low cost too!

This offer is available until 31st December 2021 – Bookings Open Now

Bookings must be made direct and placed by Nautilus Financial Members only (have your current membership card on hand when you book) via phone on 0474 727 777 (office hours only).

Lady Musgrave / HMAS Tobruk Trip – 25 Nov-1 Dec 2021 and Wolf Rock Add Ons NOW CLOSED

15 members have signed up for this Lady Musgrave/HMAS Tobruk trip. 

This first of the 3 domestic trips in 2021/22 to replace the overseas trips – further away than our usual domestic trips, but close enough not to worry about sudden COVID lockdowns and restrictions!

We have organised an exciting combo trip to the southern Capricorn Cay, covering Lady Musgrave Island, the HMAS Tobruk wreck, and an optional Wolf Rock extension.

Located only 52km from Bundaberg, Lady Musgrave Island is the region’s only coral island that’s surrounded by a vast turquoise lagoon and a reef that’s brimming with marine life and pristine colourful corals. Lady Musgrave Island is also a huge nesting ground for green turtles and loggerhead turtles with turtles laying eggs between November to February. Most of this tiny island remains untouched with no resorts, but we will be staying on the newly operational pontoon, diving the surrounding reefs and the remote and relatively untouched dive sites within the Bunker Group of islands. For more info, click here.

We will also dive the HMAS Tobruk, decommissioned in 2015 after 34 years of service and sunk in mid-2018 off the coast of Bundaberg within the Great Sandy Marine Park. This 127m heavy-lift former navy ship rests at 30m depth (super structure to 14m depth) and is now home to a thriving and fast developing underwater ecosystem. For more info, click here.

Finally, if interested, you also have the option to extend your trip to cover Wolf Rock, a marine sanctuary since 2003 and the only known gestation site for the critically endangered Grey Nurse sharks on the East Coast of Australia. If diving with a huge group of sharks (grey nurse sharks, leopard sharks) and rays (eagle rays, blotched fan tail rays) is your thing, then this dive site is a must! For more info, click here.

Lady Musgrave & HMAS Tobruk  
Thurs 25 Nov – Arrive Bundaberg, stay at C Bargara Apartments
Fri 26 Nov – Breakfast, Pack, Embark Lady Musgrave Experience 6:15 AM, 3 Dives. Stay at LMHQ
Sat 27 Nov – Lady Musgrave HQ, 4 Dives. Stay at LMHQ
Sun 28 Nov – Lady Musgrave HQ, 4 Dives. Stay at LMHQ
Mon 29 Nov – 2 Dives, Transfer to Bundaberg, arriving 5 PM, Stay at C Bargara
Tues 30 Nov – Breakfast, Transfer – 2 dives at HMAS Tobruk Wreck. Finish by 3pm, Stay at C Bargara
Wed 1 Dec – Breakfast, Check Out, transfer to Bundaberg airport for afternoon flight

Wolf Rock Add-on
OR coach to Rainbow Beach – Wolf Rock 2 dives. Stay at Freedom Resort
Thurs 2 Dec – 2 dives at Wolf Rock. Stay at Freedom Resort
Fri 3 Dec – Check out, transfer to Bundaberg airport. Afternoon flight home.

For more information check your email or contact Deb at Diveplanit/Diversion Dive Travel deborah@diversiondivetravel.com.au and/or Akiko at overseastrips@nautilus-scuba.net

Sponsor Deals to Financial Members – On Now!

Hey members … there are always great deals on with our Club Sponsors.  From live-aboard weekends to day-boat dives, there is ALWAYS something on!

Special Dive Deals details are emailed to members as Exclusive Offers as they arrive – you need to watch your email inbox for these as they are often Last Minute or Sell Out fast so never make it to this website.  Taking up just ONE of these offers could save you more than the cost of club membership !!  #TrueStory.

Our Day-Boat sponsors also offer Club Discounts for ANY DAY of the week they run, not just Club Days.  Some do give a greater discount on Club Days as an incentive to come along, and why not – you will be diving with friends on great vessels sharing stories and the adventure.   If you cannot make those days though, you STILL GET Club Discounts with are ALWAYS better than locals rates and a lot better than RRP.

Still uncertain or need forward information to plan your diary? 
Want to get super-organised and support out local dive operators who support us?
Just can’t get enough dive time logged?
Well head to our Event Calendar for ‘diary date information’ to help you along.

So who are our sponsors?   >>>   SEE HERE

COMING SOON:
Financial Members will soon be able to access a special Members Only area of the Website and see a current list of all Sponsor Discounts.  Until then, details have returned to your Monthly Club Dive email so head there and look for the link towards the end of the message. 

The committee work hard to obtain Member Discounts and Benefits from our valued sponsors so be sure to take up the offers and enjoy – it’s what makes it all possible – your participation!

Sticky: Special Dive Events – What They Are

The club organises periodic specialized dive trips for members catering for:
• differing levels of dive experience;
• variety of diving interests;
• venture beyond local GBR waters;

These trips vary in pricing & complexity and include Australian destinations, some outside of Queensland.
Trips are planned in a way to avoid or minimize financial loss to the club (cut off dates, opening offers to non-members, wait lists, etc) so it is important to read ALL the details as the trips are released.

Some upcoming trips in the planning (Tentative, not assured) may include:
*  Frankland Islands;
*  Local Live-aboard trips;
*  Fitzroy Island (shore diving);
*  Yongala (wreck);
*  Mission Beach;
*  and many more.

So keep a watch on the Website (this page), Newsletter, financial Member Emails and of course by attending the Monthly Member Meetings (details HERE ) !!