Why you should visit Green Island

Why you should visit Green Island

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 11/16/2020

Reading time: 3 mins

Nestled 27 kilometres away from the coast of Cairns, the Green Island is surrounded by crystal clear waters and exquisite coral reef.

It is one of the most popular islands within the Great Barrier Reef, being the only one of the 300 sand cays in the region that is covered in rainforest. Home to more than 120 species of native plants, thick in greenery for visitors to enjoy.

The History of Green Island

Forming over 6,000 years ago by a continuous build-up of sand sediments, this Island has a long and fascinating history. Green Island and surrounding reef region are known as Wunyami, a name given to the land by the Guru-Gulu Gungandji Aboriginal people, who are the traditional owners of the area. They lived within the area for thousands of years, hunting and holding traditional customs on Green Island. Most significantly, the island was used as an initiation site for the young Aboriginal men. The first European sighting of Green Island was in 1770 when Captain James Cook sailed past and noted the land being an ‘a low green woody island’. He named it Green Island after his ship’s astronomer, Mr Charles Green. However, it wasn’t until the mid-1800s, that Europeans came to Green Island settle down.

What you can do while Visiting

  • Snorkelling

    Snorkelling is by far one of the most popular activities on Green Island! Home to a vibrant range of fantastic marine life in the island’s shallow shores. Simply grab the snorkelling gear and head out to the colourful reef spots bordering the island. The region is overrun by unique wildlife, with tropical fish, sea turtles, and an array of coral all different shapes and sizes. There are two habitats to discover in the region, the coral system as well as the seagrass beds in the shallow shores. This region is sometimes inhabitant by large animals such as grazing dugongs, making for a truly unforgettable snorkelling adventure for anyone visiting.

  • Scuba Diving

    Head to little deeper into the Island’s surrounding waters to see creatures and sights you may have miss by simply snorkelling. Roam about the seafloor without having to worry about heading back up the surface for air. Immersing yourself in this underwater world of spellbinding beauty!

  • Glass Bottom Boat

    If you aren’t a fan of getting wet, but you still want to see the reef system, hop on the island’s glass-bottom boat tours. Here, you can discover the reef’s colourful coral and many marine animals from the comfort of a state-of-the-art boat. Looking through the bottom’s clear glass into the window of the underwater world!

  • Relax at the Beach

    You don’t have to fill your day with endless activities to enjoy Green Island. The island features long stretches of soft white sands, perfect for those looking to laze about the beach. Simply lie back and soak up the sun, or splash in the warm waters, no matter what you choose to do on Green Island, we guarantee this tropical paradise will leave you satisfied.

Related article: What is Cairns famous for?

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.