Diving Wolf Rock is among Australia’s best dives, especially for shark fans and those who like to see some big species. The two small rocks at the surface near Double Island Point (Rainbow Beach) actually go 30 metres deep and hide a fantastic treasure underwater. Be ready for an adventure!
Diving Wolf Rock is one of the best scuba diving weekend trips you can do from Brisbane.
Wolf Rock Dive: an adventure underwater
Are you covered for scuba diving by your travel insurance? It’s worth double-checking. If not, I recommend DAN (Divers Alert Network) for those who dive regularly. WorldNomads* and Covermore* also make it easy to add adventurous activities like scuba diving to your plan.
Experience and level needed to scuba dive Wolf Rock
This Rainbow Beach diving trip is not for beginners. Wolf Rock is a deep dive site. You’ll need an Advanced Open Water Certification to dive there, or you’ll have to take the Deep Dive course.
I did my first dive there just after my Advanced Certification. I had never gone that deep before. It reflected straight away on my air consumption. Combined with the surprising surge and the excitement, I wasn’t relaxed enough, and this may have been my shortest dive ever! Since, I only improved and I now easily reach the 45-minute bottom time limit.
Diving with Nitrox
Diving with Nitrox is recommended to maximise your time underwater when diving Wolf Rock. You’ll get t spend more time in deep water – where the sharks hang out – as Nitrox will extend your no decompression time (you breathe less nitrogen).
If you don’t have the Nitrox certification, you can do the course with the dive shop and then your double dive using Nitrox.
What to expect underwater when diving Wolf Rock
During each dive at Wolf Rock, we saw the impressive Grey Nurse Sharks chilling around. Large groups of them relax there all year round. Although these big sharks look nasty with their huge teeth, they’re actually placid and not easily frightened. They will swim around and give you one of the best shark experiences you can get!
Rays are also often spotted in the area: bull rays and eagle rays seem to be the most common, and manta rays can be spotted too after they leave Byron Bay and Minjerribah (Stradbroke Island) on their way to Lady Elliot Island. We also saw leopard sharks, wobbegongs, turtles, giant groupers, barracuda, huge schools of fish, an octopus and smaller critters including a mantis shrimp, clownfish and a pipefish.
During winter, you may spot migrating whales from the boat and hear them singing underwater. Seriously, it’s one of the best dive sites in Australia.
Wolf Rock diving: an adventure on the boat too!
Rainbow Beach diving is laborious. Be prepared. You’re likely to suffer a bit on your way from Rainbow Beach to Wolf Rock! But the team will make it as smooth as possible for you.
Although the dive site isn’t too far from Double Island Point Beach, the dive boat comes all the way from Rainbow Beach Marina. I wish we could embark somehow at Double Island Point like I did once with my dive club: they would see me more often!
Twice, I spent the one-hour boat trip clung on to the vessel, and I received too much water in the face to be able to enjoy the fantastic views of Rainbow Beach’s coloured sands. If you can, try to seat on the left side. I had a much better trip!
And when we finally stopped, I wished we hadn’t. If you’re easily seasick, you may not have a good time diving Wolf Rock. The team encourages a trip to the pharmacy to buy seasickness pills before leaving (they aren’t allowed to provide them), and you may want to consider that option. On my first two trips there, half of the visitors got sick during the one-hour interval between the two dives. On my last trip, I was the only one feeling unwell (which is unusual for me; I usually don’t get sea sick).
But the crew will do their best to make you feel good. Sometimes, they may find a protected area so you can still enjoy some food and warm drinks. Fo me, the best option was to go back in the water and spend my surface interval snorkelling. When it’s time to go back into the water, they’ll help you with your equipment if you need to watch the horizon as much as you can and never look down.
They provide warm and waterproof jackets to keep you warm on the way back. Don’t hesitate to ask one.
Have you been to Rainbow Beach for scuba diving? How was it? Share your experience in the comments below!
Where to stay in Rainbow Beach
We often camp when we visit Rainbow Beach. Camping at Inskip Point only cost $6.75 per person and it’s a short drive to Wolf Rock Dive Centre. However, we got attacked by biting midges all night long once and didn’t sleep well.
Another cheap option is to stay at a hostel. We stayed in a double room with a shared bathroom at Pippies Beachhouse* and found it really convenient. If you want a private bathroom, Freedom Rainbow Beach* next door offers one of the cheapest options for a couple.
If you’re looking for accommodation with something special and can increase your budget, you can find accommodations with sea views and a spa bath, such as Rainbow Ocean Palm Resort* (apartments) and Rainbow Sea Resort* (ensuite room).
Diving in Rainbow Beach is incredible, but it’s not the only fun activity you can do there. Read this article to find out more!
Where is Rainbow Beach / Wolf Rock?
Rainbow Beach is in Queensland, about 3 hours north of Brisbane, just in front of K’gari (Fraser Island). If you have a 4WD, you can go from Noosa to Rainbow Beach via the beach. You’ll pass Double Island Point on the way: Wolf Rock is just nearby. But the dive shop is in Rainbow Beach town, and the boat leaves from the bay for a long boat ride to the rock.
Diving in Australia? Check out this list of the best dive sites on Australia’s East Coast!
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