Mangrove forest of Port Douglas

Tropical North Queensland

06 Dec 2018 Travel Stories, Travel Tips
I recently spent a few days getting acquainted with tropical Far North Queensland.  If you haven’t been before it is an absolute must!

Our trip started on the Friday with flights and our annual conference in Cairns, come Sunday I was extremely excited to get out and explore.  First on the list was the new Cairns Aquarium which only opened 18 months ago. The aquarium was great, it showed the biodiversity of the two adjoining world heritage listed areas, The Wet Tropics and The Great Barrier Reef.  The Aquarium showcases 15,000 animals from 10 different ecosystems and 71 habitats across the Tropical North and set us up for what we would see the following day when we got out to the Great Barrier Reef. Following our trip to the Aquarium we were taken to AJ Hackett.  Now AJ Hackett is well known for adventure activities and one in particular… Bungy Jumping!  Safe to say I was not feeling the Bungy jump this particular day however a couple of ladies from our group did give it a go along with the jungle swing. The setting alone at AJ Hackett is worth a visit, it’s amongst the rain forest and if you are doing the bungy you get a great view of Cairns, or so I’m told.

The next morning we were picked up from our hotel in Palm Cove by the Quicksilver coach and taken to Port Douglas where we would board Silversonic for our day out at the Reef. This was a great day out. Our itinerary with Silversonic included 3 different reef sites throughout the day with 5 hours out at the reef. We had the option to Snorkel and Dive (to dive you have to pre book for both advanced divers and introductory dives) in some very sexy looking stinger suits. All 3 parts of the reef we went to are so very different from one another.  We saw a lot of the fish species we had seen the day before in the aquarium along with some Green Sea Turtles and Black Tip Reef Sharks. Highlight of the trip for sure.  The northern Great Barrier Reef is the best snorkelling I have ever done!

After our day at the Reef we were dropped off at our accommodation, Peppers Beach Club in Port Douglas for the next 2 nights.

The next day we had a day tour to Daintree, Cape Tribulation and Mossman Gorge.  I was really looking forward to this day as I wasn’t sure what to expect but I knew it was going to be great if looking at the landscape was anything to go by.

We had a great guide who was very knowledgeable and so passionate about the area.  First stop for the day was a 1 hour Daintree River cruise in which we were lucky enough to see a Saltie (Saltwater Crocodile), as it’s coming into breeding season they are not very often spotted so it was a bonus.  Onto Cape Tribulation where we walked along the beach and up to a lookout with the most amazing views of where ‘The Rainforest meets The Reef’.

Our last stop of the day was Mossman Gorge, we were given an insight into the local Aboriginal culture and a walk through the rainforest to a great swimming hole area in a pristine fresh water creek.

The last day our trip was breakfast with the birds followed by a tour at The Wildlife Habitat in Port Douglas.  I would definitely recommend a visit here, it was so much fun, not only are there hundreds of different bird species there are also Kangaroos, Cassowaries, different types of Wallabies, Koalas which you can hold, crocodiles and it’s one of only two wildlife parks in the world to display Lumholtz’s Tree Kangaroos, a native to the region.

That was our trip to Far North Queensland, it’s an absolutely magical destination and would highly recommend it to all travellers no matter what the age or budget!

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