Environmental Policy & Social Sustainability

Sunlover Reef Cruises is proud to offer guests a genuine, high quality ecotourism experience, while being backed by a strong, well managed commitment to sustainable practices.

The definition of ecotourism as adopted by Ecotourism Australia is:

“ecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing natural areas that fosters environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation”.

Ecotourism Certified GTL-logo

Sunlover Reef Cruises is a Green Travel Leader in the Australian tourism industry, having held Ecotourism Certification for 10 years now.

The ECO Certification program administered through Ecotourism Australia assures travellers that certified products are backed by a strong, well managed commitment to sustainable practices and provides high quality nature-based tourism experiences.

The ECO Certification Program is a world first and it has been developed to address the need to identify genuine nature and ecotourism operators.

Sunlover Reef Cruises is dedicated to the preservation of this World Heritage Listed natural wonder by embracing Best Environmental Practices.

Sunlover Reef Cruises is compliant with Great Barrier Reef Marine Parks Authority‘s (GBRMPA) laws in relation to operating a tourism business on the Great Barrier Reef and we work with this Governing body to ensure that all regulations are continuously met. All chemicals used by our staff on-board have been pre-approved by Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority prior to use.

Sunlover Reef Cruises also works very closely with the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre. In the past, we have donated land to the centre and additionally, contributions from a range of Tee shirts sold on board make a direct contribution to the welfare of these amazing creatures. We have also held several turtle releases at the pontoon, once the animals have been fully rehabilitated by the TRC.

Sunlover Reef Cruises is pleased to provide free transfers for the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre staff and associated media personnel in order to participate in the necessary turtle releases in the area. We hope to assist many more rehabilitated turtles in their release back to their home on the Great Barrier Reef.

Sunlover Reef Cruises plays an active role in the Crown of Thorns Starfish watch and Coral recovery. Our operations department oversees the dive team and qualified marine biologists who have the responsibility of carrying out a coral health survey. The maintenance program covers Crown of Thorn Starfish (COTS) watch and the research of coral diseases and corals damaged by rough sea conditions, mostly seen during strong Northerly winds or Cyclones.

Sunlover Reef Cruises strives to educate all guests on the importance of preserving the Great Barrier Reef and its inhabitants. We advise guests of key ways that they can contribute to the Great Barrier Reef’s protection and preservation. These include:  observing the marine life in its natural environment rather than touching or handling; never standing on the coral while snorkeling or diving; disposing of rubbish in the bins provided around the vessel and pontoon; and, when applying sunscreen, ensure that the  cream/liquid is absorbed before entering the water.

Guests are encouraged to tell their friends what they have learnt about protecting the Great Barrier Reef.