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A full day's experience awaits this year's Great Barrier Reef Swimmers

There are two Great Barrier Reef Swim events this year for ocean swimmers looking for more than just a swim event.

Are you looking for an ocean swim event that packs a big punch?

The Great Barrier Reef Swim is much more than an ocean swim event, it’s your chance to swim over one of the world’s seven natural wonders, attend a swim clinic with an Australian Olympic Coach and a chance to chat with triple Olympic gold medalist, Leisel Jones OAM.

Event founder, Gareth Sykes, was originally looking to do a series of swims for the North Queensland Games and Great Barrier Reef Masters Games when an avid Cairns swimmer suggested reef swims.

“We were originally looking at doing swims along the coastline of the Great Barrier Reef for the Great Barrier Reef Masters Games because with our merchandise business Team Elite has an interest in these,” said Mr Sykes.

“It wasn’t until I was talking to Ted Bundy, a very dedicated Cairns swimmer, who suggested swimming out on the actual reef rather than along the coastline.

“At that point, we hadn’t dreamed of that but a few trips later, we saw it was a possibility and found that it was an extremely attractive ocean swim event proposition that many swimmers would love.”

The Great Barrier Reef Swim is a full day experience, exploring the outer edges of the Great Barrier Reef, with plenty to keep you entertained all day.

“There are two event days on this year’s calendar, the ‘Classics‘ which is a three-kilometre or five-kilometre swim on the 4th of September, or the ‘Challenge‘ which is either a three-kilometre race or one kilometre swim the reef on the 22nd of October,” said Mr Sykes.

“Following the swim, participants have the opportunity to go for a snorkel or scuba dive and explore the beautiful marine life the Great Barrier Reef has to offer.

“Swimmers will be able to see over 1600 different fish species and 600 different coral species as well as turtles, Maori Wrasse, giant clams, manta rays, reef sharks (the nice kind), potato cod, clownfish (Nemo) and possible whales.

“They will also be able to mingle with fellow swimmers at the post-swim function and enjoy the company of our ambassador, triple Olympic gold medalist Leisel Jones.”

This year is the perfect year to experience the Great Barrier Swims before the Northern Hemisphere jumps onboard in 2023.

“This year is ripe for Aussies and Kiwis to get into the swims with some ease,” said Mr Sykes.

“We have had a huge interest from the Northern Hemisphere, especially the United States and the United Kingdom.

“But with the world only just opening up to travel, most of them are planning to come for the swims in 2023.

“So, this year would be the year for Aussies and Kiwis to jump on board and experience the beautiful Great Barrier Reef Swims.”

Events discussed in this article

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  • Written by Ocean Swims on 8 May 2022
  • (Updated on 10 August 2023)

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