Stretching from the wild outer reefs of the Coral Sea to the tangled mangrove and rain rainforest in the state of Queensland on Australian’s East Coast, the Great Barrier Reef is a 2,600 km wonder of nature!
Created by billions of tiny polyps in partnership with microscopic plants, the Great Barrier Reef is the largest living structure on the Planet. Let’s hope that we humans do not destroy over a short time what nature has taken eons to create!
Like all other reefs, the Great Barrier Reef is an extraordinary phenomenon in an otherwise barren tropical “waterwold”. What is unique however is its size, the wider ecosystem it is part of and the variety of life it supports.
This natural paradise is, in fact, part of a beautiful region made of lush mountainous islands, tiny cays barely rising above sea level and a coastline that hides as many other beautiful experiences and the Reef itself.
Photograph by Tony Sernack
To experience its true magnificence it is not enough to spend time at ground level; it is vital to view it from the air or from beneath the waves.
From above the Great Barrier Reef is an immense opalescent space dotted with a myriad of seemingly abstract patterns, where deep blues morph into shades of aqua, turquoise, white, emerald, jade, brown, and grey.
The sea that sustains and hides it, is a perfect liquid skin that touches the shores of perfectly smooth atolls, clashes against calcareous and jagged rocks and is streaked by the eddies of streams and rivers flowing into it.
From the air, this translucent skin reveals a hidden world where dark shapes can be seen occasionally moving slowly in the distance. These are large gropers and medium size sharks going about their business or shawls of smaller fish being chased by bigger predators.
When snorkeling or scuba diving beneath the waves, the Reef reveals its magic with infinite detail. From this perspective, a circus of iridescent colour is revealed in shades of blues, yellows, oranges, black and reds. Little creatures can be observed darting away, while others hover languidly over swaying anemones. Large fan corals jut from the sloping terrain and the sandy seafloor hides fish lurking patiently in waiting for careless prey to pass nearby.
“The Great Barrier Reef is in danger, it is time to step up”
– Sir David Attenborough –
Why visit the Great Barrier Reef?
This mesmerising and silent world of so much beauty and creativity is a compelling force for anyone who has seen it or wishes to see it to quickly become an ambassador for its protection.
From ground level, the Reef appears like an immense swimming pool surrounding fabulous islands and luxurious resorts. After a dip one can return ashore to sunbake, stroll barefoot on the soft sand, feeling it slip through the toes. Time all of a sudden seems to stands still!
The balmy temperature and light breezes invite romantic feelings and thoughts of candlelight dinners with lobster and seafood after the activities of the day. Life feels perfect for a time and we are energised again.
Let’s not lose this wonderful world full of life that provides so much happiness to its visitors.
If you wish to discover the best of the Great Barrier Reef and its entire ecosystem, it is important to travel at the right time of year and seek advice from local experts. Contact Nomads Secrets, and I will personally ensure your journey is truly insightful, relaxing and unforgettable.