Our trip to Cairns in 2004 was a big one. We had such an awesome time and can’t wait until we are able to head up that way again and see all the things we loved as well as some of the things we just didn’t have time to do. There are plenty of day trips that you can take if you make your base in Cairns. We spent a whole day exploring the Daintree Rainforest and Mossman Gorge. This area is World Heritage listed and is one of the most pristine and beautiful locations in Australia.
As you drive north along the Captain Cook Highway there are plenty of spots to stop along the way and take in the magnificent coastal scenery. The road is quite winding and in places high above the rocky coastline below. Rex Lookout is one of the best spots to stop and take in the view.
THE DAINTREE RIVER
The Daintree River itself is approximately 140 klm’s long and flows out into the Coral Sea. It is home to a number of Estuarine Crocodiles and the best way to get up close to these pre-historic like creatures is to go on a river cruise. There are a number of tour operators to choose from and all offer small group tours with interesting commentary and they will also do their best to ensure that you do sight some crocs in the water. We chose the Daintree Rainforest River Train for our cruise and were lucky enough to see several crocodiles in the water, which the kids thought was awesome!
Do make sure you adhere to all advisory signs in the area and don’t go in the water. Crocodile attacks are rare in Australia, but they certainly do happen.
On our way back south we stopped off at Mossman Gorge which is part of the southern section of the Daintree Rainforest. With crystal clear pools and a rainforest boardwalk it is the ideal place to spend an afternoon. When we visited in 2004 you could park near the Gorge and walk in. My understanding is that you now have to pay to enter the park via the Mossman Gorge Centre. As it is such a beautiful spot I think this would be worthwhile.
There is so much to see and do in and around Cairns that we really only skimmed the surface. The Daintree River and Rainforest, along with Mossman Gorge, really are must see locations.