This year, at EYE TO EYE MARINE ENCOUNTERS, we have been very busy working on the not-for-profit marine research and educational organisation, Great Barrier Reef Legacy,

Modelled after the Undersea Explorer and operating from onboard a dive/research vessel, GBR Legacy will support research, citizen science, students and adventure divers.

We are currently in the process of procuring our primary research vessel for our non-profit, DGR, Great Barrier Reef Legacy.

Due to new developments and shifting timelines, we aren't able to guarantee that we’ll have our vessel with enough lead time for our scheduled Minke departures.

As your travel plans must be made in advance, we are not taking bookings for the 2017 scheduled Minke expeditions until further notice.

We apologise for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience. We will keep update this page when we know more.


Eye to Eye Marine Encounters is still available for private, whole boat Minke whale charters on a variety of vessels.

Please contact us for more details including prices, dates and your custom itinerary.

For private yachts, Eye to Eye offers the highest level of Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea guides including the Swim with Minke Whale experience.

For more information, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Experience the profound sense of connection that comes from looking into the eye of another species…

Dwarf Minke Whale Expeditions run for 6 weeks each June/July and all encounters take place on the whale's terms. Learn about their biology, behaviour and life history through onboard lectures by marine biologists and scientists. Guests will be given the opportunity to assist the ongoing research by helping to identify individual whales and be involved in behavioural observations. This is truly one of the most unique under water experiences available (and don't forget that it is accompanied with magnificent diving and snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef!)

Code of Practice for dwarf minke whale interactions

Sample itinerary:

TRIP BEGINS: Day 1: (4:30 - 5:30pm)
Board your vessel at Pier 319 (behind St Mary’s By the Sea church), Port Douglas. Meet your crew, organize/hire dive gear and complete paperwork. Enjoy a meal in town with fellow guests and return to the boat at 8:00 PM for a safety and minke whale briefing. Depart around 9:00 PM. Steam overnight and awake at your first dive/snorkel site.

DAY 2:
Wake up to the Ribbon Reefs stretching out before you. Enjoy a light breakfast before the first dive/snorkel, followed by a hot cooked meal. This will be accompanied by an in-depth briefing on swim-with-whale guide-lines. Afterwards, travel to your next destination, searching for whales whilst underway. If whales are eager to interact, don your wetsuit and enter the water, ready for the experience of a lifetime. Watch as their confidence and curiosity grows, bringing them eye to eye with you. If no whales are found, continue your dive/snorkel adventure on beautiful coral gardens and pinnacles. In the evening, attend an interpretive talk (and power point presentation) by researchers on whale biology, behaviour and the history behind the Minke Whale Project.

DAY 3:
Depending on the events of previous day, focus upon either diving/snorkeling on the reef, or spotting whales. Dive site will be selected based on weather conditions and seasonal marine highlights. Night dives are offered most evenings. During mealtime, enjoy informal talks with onboard biologists and researchers.

DAYS 4 - 6:
Spend the day looking for whales (very often the whales will find us!) and exploring the northern Ribbon Reefs and visiting famous dive sites including the Cod Hole, Pixie Pinnacle and Steve’s Bommie. During encounters help researchers identify individuals and key behaviours and be sure to keep an ear out for the minke’s unique acoustic repertoire. Increase your marine knowledge and enthusiasm by attending another interpretive talk offered by our onboard biologists.

DAY 7:
Final day of the expedition! Enjoy your last two dives and/or minke swim in the morning as we steam south towards Port Douglas. Relax whilst underway taking in the beautiful views of our emerald rainforest clad coast. If we are really lucky we could even see one of the first Humpback whales of the season! Vessel returns to Port Douglas late afternoon (4:00 – 5:00) where you will disembark and say your good-byes!

4 & 5 Day Trip :

Our 4 and 5 day day itineraries are flexible and will be similar to that of the 6-day trip (including interpretive talks on board). The focus will be on whale interactions (both above and below water) but we also include snorkeling and diving at some of the Great Barrier Reef's best dive sites such as the world-famous Cod Hole, Pixie’s Pinnacle and Steve’s Bommie.


Why choose us?

John Rumney and his dedicated team of researchers and crew have been running swim with minke whale trips for 17 years and pioneered the swim with whale experience in Queensland. They were also instrumental in the development of guidelines that ensures all encounters are carried out on the whales’ terms and have now been adopted by industry as World’s Best Practice.

We believe in connecting people with nature in a profound and meaningful way. Our aim is to create the best minke experience along with excellent reef snorkelling and diving.

What make Eye to Eye Marine Encounters unique?

  • Minkes are our priority. We maintain a flexible itinerary in order to maximise the time and quality of whale encounters.

  • Dive sites are selected based on weather conditions and seasonal marine attractions, not on a predetermined timeframe

  • Researcher presence. Our scientists actively conduct field work while on board and appreciate and encourage guest involvement (i.e. by contributing photographs and behavioural observations to the Minke Whale Project)

  • Our dedicated and highly skilled crew has worked with us for years and shares our passion, values and thirst for adventure and fun.

  • We believe in the exchange of ideas and sharing of knowledge as a means of enriching the marine experience.

We want to give YOU the best wildlife experience possible in the hope that it will inspire you to protect our marine treasures. Our ethos and reputation has made us the first point of call for documentary film crews, universities and marine institutes around the world. We have been fortunate enough to introduce the beautiful minke whales to IMAX, Galatee (Oceans), National Geographic and the BBC and wish to continue sharing one of world’s most incredible wildlife experiences with others.







Eye to Eye also offers private swim-with Minke whale charters across a range of vessels.

Please contact us at : info@marineencounters.com.au


For more information of our scheduled itineraries :contact Eye to Eye Marine Encounters:

 on 61 (0) 7 4098 5417  or   email : info@marineencounters.com.au



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