With the rain comes bright colours, beautiful scenery and an abundance of waterfalls, though you may find that some temporary road closures could be in place. Before you hit the road, check the latest road conditions and advice to avoid unexpected hazards on your drive.
On the Trail of Inspiration
Where to experience the best Tropical North Queensland has to offer… from wallowing under a waterfall to taking the plunge on the Great Barrier Reef.
20 waterfalls near Cairns
Mighty mountain ranges and Wet Tropics Rainforest create the optimum environment for a myriad of extraordinary waterfalls. Fall in love with these 20 waterfall wonderlands only a short drive from Cairns.
The Wet Tropics’ Famous Five Precincts and a guide to exploring them
If you’re looking to connect with nature and discover a rainforest that’s the oldest, longest and largest in Australia, go behind the foliage with this guide to the five precincts of the Wet Tropics.
Beneath the Milkyway with Aboriginal Traditional Custodians
Moungibi (Burketown), a small town in the Gulf of Carpentaria with a population of fewer than 300 people, may surprise you with its depth of experiences – Indigenous-owned and operated Yagurli Tours, offers a collection of cultural tours run by the Gangalidda-Garawa Traditional Custodians.
Snorkel vs intro vs certified dive
Check out this handy guide to find your reef style – from donning a mask and snorkel or taking your very first dive, to unique diving experiences reserved for certified divers.
Follow the palm trees to paradise: Thala Beach Nature Reserve
Discover a tropical paradise along the Great Barrier Reef Drive between Cairns & Port Douglas at the idyllic coastal eco-retreat, Thala Beach Nature Reserve.
Luxury places to rest your head
Escape to luxe island hideaways, indulgent outback retreats or tranquil ancient rainforests. Kick off your shoes, take some much needed R&R and discover the unique landscape of Tropical North Queensland.
15 ways to connect with Indigenous culture
Tropical North Queensland is the only region in Australia with two distinct Indigenous cultures, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. Connect with these ancient cultures 60,000 years in the making.
Choose your own adventure: Discover the Daintree & Cape Tribulation
Choose your own adventure with these unique tour ideas in Cape Tribulation; a place where Australia’s oldest, largest and longest rainforest collides with the only living organism seen from space.
Eat your way through these Palm Cove Restaurants
Taste the flavours of the north in the seaside village of Palm Cove, where restaurants take pride in local produce, fresh flavours and providing a warm tropical welcome served with an icy-cold drink.
Guide to Cairns Beaches
A chain of relaxed seaside villages lay just north of Cairns, each boasting their own unique features. Find out more about each of Cairns’ beaches and which tickle your fancy.
Vlasoff Cay: the most incredible place to picnic
Feel grounded the moment you arrive at a private sand cay on the Great Barrier Reef.
Great places to go camping near Cairns
Are your campsites better described as camp palaces, or do you just roll with the bare essentials? Whether you’re at one end of the spectrum or the other, lace up your hiking shoes, load up your 4WD (or hatchback) and string your fairy lights around these camping sites near Cairns.
10 Instagram locations near Cairns
With endless picturesque places on the doorstep, you’re spoilt for choice as soon as you touch down in the tropics. Send your holiday posts to the top of the feed with these Instagram locations near Cairns.
Old town young heart: your guide to Yungaburra
It’s no coincidence the Atherton Tablelands village of Yungaburra attracts visitors from far and wide. This village, 1200m above sea level, translates to Meeting Place in local indigenous dialect – and the trail of headlights coming from Cairns each weekend proves it.
48 hours mountain biking the Cassowary Coast
From making first tracks at sunrise along the coast to meeting friendly local wildlife in the ancient rainforest, uncover the secrets of the mountain biking trails of Mission Beach and surrounds.
Top Scenic Flights
From scenic flights over the Great Barrier Reef and the tropical rainforest to flying to an ancient aboriginal rock art site or undertaking an epic helicopter pub crawl, take to the sky on your Tropical North Queensland adventure.
Tropical North Queensland
Eleven distinct destinations, hundreds of places to see, endless experiences to relish. Where to begin your tropical journey of discovery.
Gulf Savannah & Outback
The outback meets the sea in this remote region stretching across the Gulf of Carpentaria. Marvel at ancient geological wonders, try your luck fossicking for gold, buy fresh prawns straight from the trawler and swap stories with local characters.
Torres Strait Islands
Off Australia’s northern tip, the islands of the Torres Strait are a world unto themselves. Few travellers experience the unique melting pot of Aboriginal and Melanesian cultures, waters teeming with dugongs and dolphins, and hidden relics of Australia’s military past.
Cooktown and Cape York
Getting to the edge of Australia is an adventure you will never forget. Tackle rugged dirt roads and raging rivers, explore 27 national parks, meet the locals in historic Cooktown and immerse yourself in Australia’s most fascinating Indigenous dance festival.
Tropical North Queensland’s not all about the coast. Head inland to the Atherton Tablelands and discover a lush green world dotted with waterfalls, swimming holes, farm gates, food and wine trails, and some of the best coffee in the country.
Tourists have been flocking to the quirky village of Kuranda for more than 100 years. Wind through the mountains in a historic train, fall in love with the vibrant arts community and feel the spray of Queensland’s most famous waterfall.
Barefoot luxury is the order of the day in this charming holiday town set between rainforest and reef. Iconic beach resorts and award-winning golf courses rub shoulders with stylish boutiques, alfresco restaurants, trendy craft breweries and bustling markets.
Daintree and Cape Tribulation
Discover a place where two UNESCO World Heritage Sites meet. The 180-million-year-old Wet Tropics Rainforest tumbles down to the coast at Cape Tribulation, right on the edge of the Great Barrier Reef. Head into the jungle for the digital detox of a lifetime.
Luxury hotels, fine dining restaurants, breezy beach bars and indulgent spas await in Tropical North Queensland’s most glamorous enclave. Kayak off the beach, fish from the jetty or kick back with a cocktail by the pool. Even your dog is welcome.
Cairns and Northern Beaches
The perfect jumping-off point for your Tropical North Queensland adventure. Cairns is a vibrant city with a laid-back, outdoor lifestyle and is set right in between two natural wonders – the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics Rainforest.
Mission Beach and The Cassowary Coast
An undiscovered gem of Tropical North Queensland and the closest point to the Great Barrier Reef. This sleepy stretch of coast has it all – verdant rainforest, deserted beaches, uninhabited islands, bubbling waterholes and welcoming locals – including fascinating cassowaries.
Brilliant events against spectacular backdrops. Here’s what not to miss when you’re in Tropical North Queensland.
Arts & Culture1 Feb - 5 Dec 2020
Gordonvale Cottage Markets
Held in the heart of sugar farming township of Gordonvale, the Gordonvale Cottage Markets are a must-do item to add to your itinerary.View event
Arts & Culture6 Mar - 14 Jun 2020
Sidney Nolan’s Ned Kelly SeriesView event
Arts & Culture1 May - 30 Nov 2020
Starry Night CinemaView event
Sports3 May 2020
Cape York MarathonView event
Sports9 May 2020
Gordonvale RacesView event