Cairns, Cairns Area
Any diver's list of most outstanding dive regions on the Great Barrier Reef would include Cod Hole and the Ribbon Reefs. This string of long narrow reefs, also known as the Northern Reefs, lies about 60 miles north of Cairns. The most famous dive site on the Ribbon Reefs by far is Cod Hole. Cod Hole is known for the groups of large (150 kilograms or more) Potato Cod and Maori Wrasse that have become accustomed to divers over the past 30 years, and will approach quite closely. It's an excellent photo opportunity, these fish are huge!
During the months of June and July, Dwarf Minke Whales are found on this section of the reef, and are known to linger in encounters with snorkellers that last for hours. Local dive operators do offer trips that aim to maximise these encounters, as well as dive some of the outstanding dive sites in the surrounding area.