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Pro Dive Cairns

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I'm going on a little dive trip to Cairns on Friday and will be hopping aboard a Pro Dive boat.

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I've been on about 6 live-aboards up there so looking forward to checking these guys out.

They are supposed to be one of the oldest, and are very well rated on Trip Advisor, but it's all relative to expectations I suppose. I expect these guys to be middle-of-the-road.


Also staying at my favourite hotel (almost in the world for some reason) the Shangri-La at the Marina.

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Bring it on!!!

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Updated 10th-January-2013 at 06:38 PM by kennas



  1. kennas's Avatar
    OK, bad start. We were picked up over 20 minutes late from our hotel. At 6.15am, this is just bad, bad juju. We spent 20 minutes sitting in the gutter in front of our hotel when we could have been sleeping or getting a coffee somewhere. Not a good start to the trip. You just shouldn't get these things wrong at this time of the day. Maybe just an anomaly. Maybe I'm not a backpacker anymore that accepts this as standard?

    Anyway, pretty smooth operation once we did get picked up. Once on board, great introductions, creating a vibrant and fun atmosphere but should we be clapping the staff before the trip starts? Huh?? It should be all about us at this stage thank you very much. A bit weird, but got the juices flowing I suppose. Good job with the intro to Tour Manager / Trip Director, Jason.

    The Scuba Pro I is a little tired compared to the web photos (of course) but is kept in pretty good shape I suppose. Is smaller in real life. Very basic rooms. Blanket stained. Pillows very average. Nice top deck area. Accommodation more suitable for young singles and travellers as opposed to honeymooners. I guess that's their market.

    Once settled on board we realised there were no towels provided... No booze for sale... Huh? I suppose I would have known this if we'd read the fine print, but this is Queensland! This is a tourism business! Why would I wonder if there'd be a towel or if I could buy plonk? Must be just too costly to do the laundry and too labour intensive to sell the grog. Or, too costly to have the liquour licence. Anyway, I blame my wife for not checking. And, luckily, we brought some cocktails of our liking on board just in case anyway. And, I asked the cook nicely about spare towels and she seemed to go out of her way to provide me a small hand towel that was just sufficient.

    We have our own gear but the kit provided to the other divers looked great. Relatively new and in very good condition. Nice one.

    These guys have some fantastic dive sites. A great combination of wall, reef, swim throughs, special fish, vis. All under 18m. Some if the best coral I've seen on the reef. Didn't spend too long at any site which was well managed.

    Saw some great fish on this trip. How about a Giant Guitar Fish! Woohoo! Never thought I'd see something like that. Saw all the rest of the usual GBR fish including a Grey Reef Shark up pretty close. Lots of White Tips. Not so many Turtles, I think they were deliberately avoiding us.

    Limited guided diving which should be fixed. While the dive briefs were informative, the maps were never completely accurate, so people missed key aspects of dives. They only offer the first day and first night dive to be guided with the justification that they don't have enough staff. Well, put another DM on, or a DMT, and offer the service. Would be a huge value add.

    Caroline the Swedish cook did an outstanding job with the menu and food she's given. Everything prepared very well, less some veggies that were underdone. The lasagne was especially good. Great rich bog sauce setting it a cut above. However, not enough main meal options. You've got to have 2 options don't you? Maybe the size of the galley prevents this? They overcome the lack of main options with a variety of salads. Coffee, tea, biscuits and fruit always available. Overall, plenty of tucker, you wont go hungry.

    Excellent trip management by Jason. No one in any doubt about administration and expectations. Comprehensive dive briefs throughout, although a little too much sarcasm. Funny to some. Overall, great work.

    Pro Dive are lucky one staff member has decided to leave. Rude on a couple of occasions and lacking a customer service focus. A negative impact on my experience.

    New girl Laura from the Old Dart wins best crew member. A naturally likeable, affable and relaxed person keen to help. Excellent customer service skills! She's a great new asset to Pro Dive. Thanks Laura!

    Overall, excellent value for money. Fantastic few days. Possibly the best value out of Cairns. If they had have picked us up on time, had an ensuite room for us, provided a towel and sold booze, then the best value for money operation in town.

    Some photos on my blog: http://thesurvivalimperative.blogspot.com.au


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