In partnership with Tourism Australia
The world-renowned natural wonders of Tropical North Queensland are only a short flight away for most Queenslanders.
Starring World Heritage sites the Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef, this majestic region is made for adventure seekers, especially in the lush, green summer.
Waterfall chasing, trekking through dense rainforest, learning about the importance of the rainforest and reef with the Traditional Owners of the land, and relaxing on picture-perfect sand cays – all of these incredible experiences await you up towards the pointy tip of Australia’s east coast.
Taking in the scenery at Mossman Gorge.Source:Supplied
Here, you can tick off two bucket-list-worthy attractions. At 160 million years old, the Daintree Rainforest is the world’s oldest rainforest and is abundant in wildlife and cultural significance. At Mossman Gorge in the Daintree National Park, pristine waters flow over granite boulders and lush greenery cloaks impressive mountains, while an elevated boardwalk takes visitors through the lower rainforest canopy.
You can also take part in a Ngadiku Dreamtime Gorge Walk with an Indigenous guide and hear stories and see traditions of the Kuku Yalanji culture. The Wet Tropics region, which stretches across 450 kilometres, is a veritable wonderland of flora and fauna and home to countless species of vertebrates and butterflies, as well as 227 threatened plant species.
Snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef.Source:Supplied
And speaking of natural wonderlands, the Great Barrier Reef has long awe-struck those who have visited the world’s largest coral reef. Whether you choose to scuba-dive, snorkel or tour the turquoise waters in a glass-bottomed boat, summer is a brilliant time to visit the reef as the northerly winds bring calmer seas and incredible water clarity. November onwards is the perfect time to view turtles hatching and nesting, and from throughout the season, coral spawning will have you swimming through a real-life snow globe under the sea. If you choose to stay above water, you can take a kayak tour or even get a bird’s eye view of the spectacular reef on a jaw-dropping helicopter trip.
The climate mix of the tropics also creates the ideal conditions for quality produce. Make sure you taste tropical favourites such as mangoes, papaya and jackfruit, and in the cooler temperatures of the Atherton Tablelands, you can create your own personalised food trail with coffee and tea plantations, biodynamic dairies and aquaculture farms. For an even more magical experience, book a rainforest retreat up in the treetops for the ultimate sleepover adventure.
THE HIT LIST
•Book a stay in an eco-friendly bayan tree houses at the Daintree Ecolodge for accommodation truly connected to nature.
•Take a Ngadiku Dreamtime Gorge Walk or a Walkabout Cultural Adventures tour through Mossman Gorge to learn stories and traditions of the Kuku Yalanji people.
•Hit Rusty’s Markets in Cairns for fresh local fruit and vegetables, baked treats and bric-a-brac.
•Go chasing towering waterfalls in the Atherton Tablelands.
•Discover the sand cays along the Great Barrier Reef and find a moment of solitude to take in the azure waters.
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