Friday, September 11, 2009

- The Daintree & Cape Tribulation -

I think the Daintree is on most travellers’ itinerary when travelling to Far north Queensland. Not only is it the oldest living rainforest in the world (over 140 million years old) making it a world heritage listed area, it is home to rare species of flora and fauna and not to mention the scenery is simply breathtaking. We had been looking forward to visiting the Daintree for quite some time so you can imagine the excitement when the day finally came to leave Mossman and head north. To begin the journey we had to cross the Daintree River via cable ferry ($11 one way) which gave us the feeling we were entering another world. Once across the river the sealed road winds higher and higher up into the mountains! The poor car struggled a bit on the steep hills, but as usual the old girl pulled through just fine! We were already amongst the rainforest and before to long we pulled into a lookout to get a glimpse of just how high up we were and the View was just amazing!! Looking out from high in the mountains, to the mouth of the Daintree River Mouth, the inviting blue ocean and surrounded in lush ferns, palms and massive trees!

(Crossing the Daintree River via Cable Ferry)

(The lookout just after the river crossing)

To get amongst the rainforest we next called into the Daintree Discovery Centre, which offers an introduction to the flora and fauna of the region with a series of boardwalks, Ariel canopy walk and a five level canopy tower that takes you to the top of the trees! It was pretty interesting and gave us a glimpse of what was to come!

(Canopy tower @ the Discovery Centre)

We pushed on stopping off at various boardwalks along the way. The road continued to wind & climb through the mountains, we had to slow down many times for speed humps, also known as Cassowary crossings. (For those who don’t know a Cassowary is an endangered bird about the size of an emu, known only to be found in Far North Queensland rainforests) Unfortunately the whole time we were here we didn’t come across any, perhaps highlighting the issue of how rare and endangered these exotic birds are!

(A rare sighting of Boyd's Forest Dragon )

(One of the many 'Cassowary Crossings'.)
We followed several tracks down to visit secluded white sandy tropical beaches, lined with coconut palms, crystal blue water, ‘where the rainforest meets the reef’. Cow Bay, Thornton Beach to name a few, they were amazing! Finally that afternoon we made camp at Noah Beach (which we had to pre-book via email before leaving Mossman). How spoilt were we? We set up camp nestled behind the palm trees with a short walk onto a pristine white beach, surrounded by rainforest clad mountains and sparkling turquoise Blue Ocean! And the added bonus, we had practically to ourselves!! Pure heaven!!

(Thornton Beach!)

(Noah Beach where we camped.)

(Sunrise over Noah Beach, what a way to begin the day!)

The next morning we drove into Cape Tribulation to explore for the day. Cape Trib is a tiny community hidden amongst the rainforest, complete with general store, backpackers, tourist info and a few secluded resorts and campgrounds. We wandered around the local beaches, followed boardwalks to the lookouts etc. We decided to take one of the local tours, The Exotic Fruit Tasting and farm tour. We tried about 10 different fruits, most we’d never even heard of! Some were really nice & sweet… but there was a couple I’d rather forget! But most of all it was fun & interesting! We spent the remainder of the afternoon back at Noah Beach swimming & soaking up the sun!

(Some of the Exotic fruits we tried in Cape Trib.)

(Us on a beach at Cape Tribulation.)

The next morning we packed up the car and headed north towards Cooktown via the Bloomfield Track. For all we read about the Bloomfield, we looking forward to a 4wd adventure however perhaps due to the time of year the major challenge was getting the car up the extremely steep hills!! The river crossings were all dried up and the road had been recently graded making the drive relatively easy. We called into a place called Home Rule to walk to the “Home Rule Falls”. With only a few signs to guide us we trekked up and down steep ravines through the mountainous rainforest. It was quite challenging in sections, however we were rewarded for our efforts with a beautiful waterfall all to ourselves! We stayed a while enjoying the serenity and ultimately recuperating for the return trek! Further down the road we called into the famous Lions Den Hotel to camp for the night.
(Steep climb on the Bloomfield Track)

(Home Rule Falls, well worth the effort!)
The next day we headed of early to take in the sights of Hidden Falls, Trevethan Falls and Black Mountain National Park before we headed for Cooktown.

(Enjoying the Hidden Falls)


  1. Thankyou for your blog we were a little not sure of noah's camp ground but you have captured it so beautifully i think we might stay there.

  2. No worries! Enjoy yourselves! Just make sure you book online first with National Parks to make sure you can secure your spot.

  3. can you tell me something?... can you do snorkeling in noah beach?...congratulation for your beatiful trip.

  4. I definately wouldn't! There is a good chance you could run into CROCODILES. If you want to snorkel i recommend booking a trip out to the Great Barrier Reef which you can do from Cape Trib or back in Port Douglas!