Making waves since 1987

Passions of Paradise is a true local company and is one of the few in Cairns that is still owner operated.  Alan Wallish built the first Passions of Paradise, a steel catamaran, in Cairns in 1987 with the simple aim of providing a fun trip to the reef. In 1997 he cut the boat in half and extended the length by 4 meters. The result was a faster more comfortable ride with the added bonus of an extended range to access more reefs. Then in 2003, the “new” boat was built; Passions 2. At 25 meters and made of fiber glass she was certainly built for speed and luxury. Passions 2 revolutionized day trips to the Great Barrier Reef and a provided a real alternative to travelling on a motor boat.

At Passions, the day starts and ends with our trip. We don’t own multiple boats, we are not owned by a multi national and we don’t have a human resources department. We have always been, and remain, a small dedicated operator focused on providing you with exceptional customer service and a fun day. Our hand picked staff are our most valuable resource and they work hard to ensure that your day on the Great Barrier Reef is a special part of your holiday.

Our Passion

We provide an unforgettable, highly customer focused tour of the Great Barrier Reef to small groups of like minded guests who are looking for a unique personal Cairns Reef tour experience

Our vessel is a modern, comfortable and efficient Sailing Catamaran which we actually Sail back from the Reef

We are passionate about Eco Tourism, and we practice what we preach. We are at the forefront of sustainable Reef Tourism

We are passionate about Reef education and we assist in real Scientific studies and surveys to help the Marine park authorities

About our Vessel

Passions of Paradise

One of the largest, most comfortable sailing catamarans in Australia

sunset and night cruise cairns reef tour passions of paradise


Passions of Paradise was custom designed to the exacting standards of Sydney Naval Architect Graham Parker, and built in 2003 by famed Australian builder/racer Kanga Birtles, at his ship building facilities, Jarkan Yachts.

At 25 meters in length she is one of the largest, most comfortable commercial sailing catamarans in Australia.

The brief was to build a solid, fast and comfortable all weather sailing catamaran with a shallow draft to take advantage of the reefs at our unique outer reef locations.

A fast passage means more time on the reef.

buffet lunch passions of paradise cairns reef tour


Seating is designed so that all passengers have a clear view out of the saloon.

Large nets at the bow invite sun worshipping.

A flat carefully designed wrap-around deck means no obstacles to trip up unwary passengers.

The boat boasts a fully stocked bar and commercial galley.

Entrance in and out of the water is simple and easy through the double rear steps on the stern.

Sail plan was designed by Graham Parker, Whalespar, Kanga Birtles and Lee Sails (Sydney). These four companies are at the forefront of modern rig design.

Two large toilets, comprising normal household flush toilets, electric hand dryers, fresh water and space to change your clothing.

fish in the ocean on cairns reef tour passions of paradise


LOA : 25 metres (26.7m with duckboards)

Beam : 10.4 metres

Build material : Fiberglass composite hulls and superstructure

Draught : 1.6 metres

Weight : 32.5 tonnes (light)

Mast height : 26.8 metres

Main sail area : 150 sq. metres

Jib : 70 sq. metres

Spinnaker : 275 sq metres

Sails : Lee Sails in Sydney

Deck Hardware : Harken

Electronics : Furuno and Navman

Main engines : Cummins 210 hp x 2, Auxillary : Cummins 31 Kva

Cruising speed : 12.5 knots, Max speed : 14 knots, Sailing speed : Up to 16 knots

Let us show you the beginning…

We’ve been sharing our passion for the Great Barrier Reef for over 30 years. The vessel has changed, the bikini styles, and overuse of budgy smugglers have changed and the crew have aged a little but, we’ve always had the same values and passion. Check out our nostalgic gallery below from our first ever brochure to the first uniform!