Rainforest – check. Coral reef – check. White sandy beaches – check. Offroad adventures – check. Crystal caves – check. Crocodiles – double check!
Tropical North Queensland is a traveller’s paradise – packed with stunning scenery and adventurous activities, there’s a little something for everyone in Australia’s tropical backyard. Relax under the cool lush canopy of the Daintree or soak up the sun on a long stretch of white sandy beach. Go offroad at Cape Tribulation or snorkel the Great Barrier Reef. With so many choices, it’s hard to pack it all in to one itinerary! Here’s our bucket list for Tropical North Queensland:
Cairns by Balloon
Head up, up and away and float over Cairns and the Atherton Tablelands on a hot air balloon ride.
Wander the grounds of this National Trust listed architectural marvel; Paronella Park is a Spanish style castle with 5 hectares of lush garden to explore, an onsite café, picnic grounds and wildlife feeding opportunities for the kids.
Jump on the Beach
Get your blood pumping with an adrenalin-fuelled tandem skydive over the Great Barrier Reef.
Flames of the Forest
The ultimate romantic night out, Flames of the Forest in Port Douglas is a sensational outdoor dining experience. Enjoy seven decadent courses and sumptuous Australian wine under the stars.
Daintree Discovery Centre
Thread your way through the rainforest without damaging its fragile ecosystem at the Daintree Discovery Centre. Elevated boardwalks throughout the park offer visitors a chance to explore the rainforest in a sustainable way. If you’re lucky, you may spot a cassowary, the iconic giant bird of the Daintree.
The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is home to more than 1500 species of butterfly. Guided tours are available throughout the day. While you’re in the area, stop by the Kuranda Scenic Railway and the Reforestation Nature Park.
Ngadiku Dreamtime Walk
Immerse yourself in Aboriginal culture at Mossman Gorge on a Ngadiku Dreamtime walk, guided by an experienced Indigenous guide.
Zoom Wildlife Dome
Discover the secrets and sounds of local tropical wildlife at the CairnsZoom Wildlife Dome. Grab a selfie with a koala, challenge yourself on the ropes course or zipline across pond full of crocodiles!
Fly amongst the treetops for this ultimate rainforest adventure; rope climb, zip line and hamster wheel your way around the rainforest canopy or head in at night to watch and listen to the ancient forest come alive under the cover of darkness.
Hartley’s Crocodile Adventure
WARNING! This tour is not for the faint-hearted. Hartley’s Wildlife Park is home to an array of Australian wildlife, including the infamous crocodile. There are more than 2100m of boardwalks to explore the nature park or hop on a lagoon cruise to see Australia’s most infamous reptile in action.
The spectacular scenery isn’t just skin deep; go underground to explore the limestone caves at Chillagoe, formed more than 400 million years ago.
Get off the beaten path and take a hike to Hinchinbrook Island, Australia’s largest national park. Find your own secluded patch of sand on one of its many beaches and enjoy the tropical serenity.
Fish Cape Tribulation
Coral trout, red emperor, Spanish mackerel and sweetlip are all abundant along the reef, so hop on a fishing charter, throw in a line and catch your dinner!
Sleep in the treetops and indulge in some much needed R&R at the Daintree Ecolodge or Silky Oaks Lodge. The Healing Waters Spa at Silky Oaks was recently recognised in the World Luxury Spa awards and their signature treatments draw on the spirit of renewal and vitality of the Daintree.
And, of course, no trip to tropical North Queensland would be complete without snorkelling, diving or swimming the Great Barrier Reef. Fitzroy Island, just off Cairns, is the perfect day trip to take in the inner fringe of the reef. Day and overnight charters are also available to take travellers further off the coast into the heart of the reef.
The Final Word
With so much to do in tropical North Queensland, you’ll struggle to pack it all in – but one thing you shouldn’t forget to pack is travel insurance. Travelling domestically still carries risk – flights are cancelled, busses break down, luggage gets stolen or lost – protect yourself and your hard-earned holiday from unexpected incidents or accidents with a comprehensive travel insurance policy today and enjoy the tropics!