¡Descubre los secretos que oculta La Gran Barrera de Coral!


Discover the secrets hidden in the Great Barrier Reef!

To talk about the Great Barrier Reef, the Great Barrier Reef, we must first talk about coral reefs. What exactly is a coral reef? It is an underwater structure made of calcium carbonate and secreted by corals. It is a rocky structure that is located on an underwater platform, and that has been formed by the skeletons of corals, as well as other marine organisms. The Great Coral Reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, northeast of Australia.

The reef, which stretches for about 2.6000 kilometers is so big that it can even be appreciated from space. It is very difficult to know its exact extension, but what we do know is that it is considered the largest and most important in the world. Although he was not the first European explorer to spot the Great Barrier Reef, the Englishman James Cook was the first to carry out a scientific exploration of the area after running aground on the reef on June 11, 1770, and staying for six weeks. in the area while it was being repaired.3 So, one way or another, it can be said that he was the one who discovered it.

Due to its great biological diversity, clear temperate waters and easy accessibility, the reef is a very popular destination among scuba divers. For this reason, it is not difficult to find those divers from different parts of the world who save throughout their lives to be able to visit this reef and see it with their own eyes. On many occasions, the Great Barrier Reef is sometimes referred to as the largest living animal in the world. Actually, it consists of the millennial accumulation of many skeletons of coral colonies of the order Scleractinia, mainly composed of calcium carbonate and aragonite.

gran barrera de coral

One of the largest concentrations of biodiversity on the planet gathers on these structures, which extend for kilometers.A large area of ​​the reef is protected by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. The Great Barrier Reef was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1981, thus making clear its importance within the world of nature in this area. Protection that imposes measures that, for example, prohibit anchoring recreational boats and disembarking on corals.

Those who have had the privilege of traveling to the International Space Station (ISS) say that there, from a height of more than 360 kilometers, one of the most recognizable terrestrial elements on our planet and, at the same time, one of the most impressive for its beauty is this Great Barrier Reef. It is easy to imagine the sensation that this coral formation causes in astronauts, since its dimensions are impressive, almost unfathomable, especially when compared to other natural spaces on Earth. That is to say, a similar distance to the one that separates Madrid from Budapest. In fact, many consider it the largest living being on the planet, with an extension of almost 35 million hectares, in which up to 70 different habitats can be found.

Although, to be honest, it is not a single reef but more than 2.900, sometimes so close to each other that it is logical to include them within a single unit. And, in reality, it is not a question of a single line of barriers but of three. It is not surprising that James Cook became stranded on one of the reefs during his first voyage, becoming the first European explorer to spot the Great Barrier Reef.

gran barrera de coral


We shouldn't just be guided by how big this coral reef is. The sensation and connection with nature goes far beyond its meters, otherwise it is everything that makes it up. Beyond the impression produced by its immense extension, what the Great Barrier Reef is really valued for is for being the habitat of more than 1.800 species of fish, including 150 sharks, about 5.000 mollusks and more than 400 different corals. Its richness attracts thirty types of cetaceans, such as the humpback whale, the dwarf minke whale, numerous dolphins and dugongs, and more than 200 species of birds, among which the white-bellied sea eagle or the roseate tern stand out. In addition, we must mention numerous types of amphibians and reptiles, with rarities such as saltwater crocodiles, which inhabit mangrove areas, and sea turtles. Contemplating them when at night they approach the virgin beaches of the area to deposit their eggs in holes that they dig in the sand with great patience is a spectacle that amazes even the least sensitive spirits. A sensation that is multiplied by witnessing the birth, and tortuous career, of the little turtles on their way to the sea.


To explore the seabed, it is best to schedule the excursion on a day when there are no strong waves and when the sun is guaranteed, on the other hand, something not unusual since in Queensland the average number of sunny days is 300 a year. The sun enhances the colors of the corals and most of the species that take refuge and feed on the reefs, creating one of the most attractive spectacles on the planet. But the enjoyment of contemplating the rich biodiversity is not something that is restricted to experienced divers. In fact, the cleanliness of the waters that surround it allow great visibility from the surface, even for snorkelers. In addition, many Queensland companies offer glass bottom boat tours or small submersibles. With an oxygen tank, underwater, with diving goggles and a snorkel, comfortably seated on a boat or even from the windows of the International Space Station, the Great Barrier Reef is undoubtedly one of nature's greatest attractions. in the world. Not only because of how unique it is, but also because of everything that surrounds it, the experience of visiting the Great Barrier Reef is undoubtedly one of the best attractions that people have visited in the world.

For this same reason, for a few years now, it has been in serious danger due to pollution and environmental deterioration: it has halved in almost 30 years, a situation that is of particular concern to Australia, the country where it is located , and to those who enjoy it and fight to keep it cared for and alive. "Our results show that the resilience of the Great Barrier Reef, its resilience, is compromised compared to the past, because there are fewer pups and fewer large adults spawning." explains Andy Dietzel of the Australian government's Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies. Without a doubt, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the treasures of our planet and we must all appreciate and care for it equally. Did you previously know about the existence of this great ecosystem? If not, surely from now on you want to meet him…

gran barrera de coral


The Great Barrier Reef is the largest set of coral reefs in the world and is located in the northeast of Australia, in the territory of Queensland. Covering more than 340.000 km2 and home to more than 900 islands, the Great Barrier Reef is considered the largest living thing in the world (it can even be seen from space!). A living being in which millions of species of all types inhabit and feed on each other. What things do you know about her? Here we tell you super interesting facts about this great treasure that we have on our planet!

What can you see on the Great Barrier Reef?

To really enjoy Australia's Great Barrier Reef, hallucinate with the color of its corals, see coral sharks, turtles, clown fish (Nemo) and be left with your mouth open, then we recommend snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef from the Cairns/Port Douglas area. The Great Barrier Reef, the largest coral reef in the world, is home to more than 1.500 species of fish, 411 species of corals and dozens of other species. How big is Australia's Great Barrier Reef? The ecosystem, which has 348.700 km² in area, it has thousands of reefs and hundreds of islands made up of more than 600 types of hard and soft corals. It is home to countless species of colorful fish, mollusks, and starfish, along with turtles, dolphins, and sharks.

What is the importance of the Great Barrier Reef?

Due to their strategic location between the coast and the open sea, the reefs serve as barriers that protect the mangrove swamps and sea grass meadows from the ravages of the waves; The mangrove swamps and grass meadows, in turn, protect the reef from sedimentation and serve as breeding and nursery areas for many of the species that are part of the reef ecosystem. Coral reefs provide food and protection for countless marine creatures, such as sea urchins, hawksbill turtles, crabs, lobsters, among others. Both natural and man-made alterations can affect the complex food chain that has developed around the reef, hence the importance of its conservation.

How was the Great Barrier Reef formed?

The Great Barrier Reef formed over 1,500 miles, forming a massive breakwater off the north-eastern coast of Australia. Its origin dates back to the end of the last ice age. About ten thousand years ago, the poles began to melt, and the sea level rose, flooding the wide grasslands of the Australian coast. The surface of the sea traced a new coastline, and on the flooded coast the reef grew. Between one and the other stretched an enormous lagoon of warm waters, dotted with islands and islets – more than six hundred – land that the sea could not cover. The Great Barrier Reef would end up imposing more than three thousand reefs. Today it is the largest marine ecosystem on the planet, so gigantic that it can be seen from space.

How are corals affected by climate change?

Coral reef regions have been affected by a process called bleaching (or bleaching). The increase in the temperature of the oceans is considered the most probable cause. As the sea is warmer, the algae, which live symbiotically with the coral, abandon the coral that hosts them. The algae provide nutrients and color for the coral. Without them, the coral bleaches or discolors. This is what is happening in the Great Barrier Reef, for which Australia, the country where it is located, is very concerned and asks people to raise awareness and help in the conservation of this great treasure that we have on our planet.

gran barrera de coral

What activities can be done on the Great Barrier Reef?

Swimming with snorkel: it is the most common and economical activity that is done in the Barrier Reef. To do this, you just have to rent a mask (if you don't already have one) and enjoy the marine fauna while you swim in the paradisiacal waters. Spend the night on a catamaran: To visit all the islands that are in the Barrier Reef, you can rent a catamaran, together with more people and spend the night. This way, you can visit all the islands while enjoying the company. Route with a boat with underwater vision: if you want to relax while observing the seabed, this is a very good option. These are boats that have crystals in which you can see the bottom of the sea and hallucinate with all the marine species. Scenic flights: If you want to see Australia's Great Reef from above, this option will blow your mind. Although it is a more expensive activity than the others, it is highly recommended for you to hallucinate with the variety of colors that make up these islands. Visit Heron Island: this island is one of the best known among visitors to the Great Barrier Reef since apart from being able to enjoy incredible sunsets, between the months of November and March, you can see how turtles lay eggs in the seashore.

How long do corals live?

Coral colonies are capable of living more than 4.000 years. Almost nothing! For this reason, its conservation and history are very important. Animals that live in the depths of the sea and at very cold temperatures tend to have a very long life as a result of a slowdown in metabolism. For this reason, their care and specific conservation of the waters in which they are found is important.

Is there any reef in the world that resembles it?

The Mesoamerican Reef is the largest coral reef in the Western Hemisphere and the second largest reef in the world, after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, and is located in the Caribbean Sea along the coasts of Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras, extending 700 kilometers from the Yucatan peninsula to the Bahia Islands in the north on the country's coast. The beauty of the Mesoamerican Reef System attracts millions of tourists who visit the region every year, since it is an unmissable opportunity to be able to dive in secluded places, swim with the highest concentration of whale sharks on the planet and relax on the spectacular beaches that exist just along the MAR.

gran barrera de coral

How many species of animals are there on the Great Barrier Reef?

Plunging every day of a lifetime into the Great Barrier Reef would not be enough to discover its incomprehensible diversity. As soon as you look one meter below the surface, a kingdom of fascinating colors and shapes pops up populated by 400 types of coral, 1.800 species of fish, 5.000 mollusks, 125 sharks, 6 of the 7 existing sea turtles (all of them threatened) and 30 types of cetaceans. We can find such exotic animals as: green turtles, giant mantas, butterfly fish, seahorses, gray sharks, giant clams, clown fish. An ecosystem full of different species!

How many reefs are there in the world?

There are currently 13 protected natural areas (ANP) that include areas with reefs, nine of them are located in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea and the rest are in the Pacific and Gulf of California. Almost all of them are protected by the administrations of the countries in which they are located, or the closest ones. Despite this, there are numerous movements calling for greater conservation of these treasures of nature, which could disappear if the waters and the environment of the ecosystem in which the animals live are not cared for.

We know that now you are looking forward to visiting this great treasure that nature has given us, but remember! The largest coral reef system in the world is increasingly threatened by climate change, fishing, massive pesticide spills and the mining industry so from The Indian Face, we encourage you to read what things you can do in your day to day to help preserve this ecosystem.

gran barrera de coral