Queensland Journals

Where the Rainforest Meets the Reef

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A July 2006 trip to Queensland by stomps

Caravonica Lakes Photo, Cairns, Australia More Photos
Quote: On our second day in North Queensland, we went inland to see the World-Heritage-listed rainforest, and followed it with a short trek up the coast.

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

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Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail: Start to Red Peak"

Caravonica Lakes Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
After our first day in Cairns, when we went snorkeling/scuba diving, James and I had a lot of options but no definitive plans. After looking through various brochures and my Lonely Planet Australia, we decided to head to the Atherton Tablelands by going north, around Kuranda, and then making a large loop around to the Crater Lakes area. However, our plans changed when we noticed a sign for the Kuranda Skyrail only a few miles north of Cairns on the Captain Cook Highway.There’s not many places in the world where you can ride a gondola over a huge stretch of rainforest, so after asking how much time the ride would take (1 ½ hours if you made no stops at all), we bought a $54 ticket each and hopp...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

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Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail: Over Red Peak and to the Rainforest"

The Coastline Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of Kuranda Skyrail: Start to Red Peak.You have the choice of either lining up for the next set of gondolas or poking around the nearly 200m boardwalk through the rainforest at Red Peak. There are guided tours offered every twenty minutes or so here as well; even if you don’t take a tour, there are information signs lining the area so you can see the most important flora (and maybe even some fauna) that the area has to offer. Unfortunately, it was pouring rain and we didn’t have an umbrella (we refused to pay upwards of $30 for the ones in the Skyrail store), and even if we had used one of the free-to-borrow ones available at the station, it would have been a bit of...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

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Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail: The Barron River and Kuranda"

Into the Mist... Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of Kuranda Skyrail: Over Red Peak and to the Rainforest.Since we were there in the middle of the dry season, Barron Falls wasn’t at its most spectacular; James was disappointed that we didn’t get to see clouds of vapor rising from them as the water rushed down the cliffs into the valley below. Instead, we saw a steady stream making its way down the granite walls, which was impressive all the same.We didn’t get off at Barron Falls station, hoping that if we stopped there on the way back, the weather might be slightly better. You don’t have to get out and wait in line at this station, since the line goes straight through, rather than connecting with another. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

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Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail: Kuranda to Barron Falls"

Barron River Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of Kuranda Skyrail: The Barron River and Kuranda.We wandered for thirty minutes or so through the various markets and down the main street, which was absolutely packed with the throngs of tourists that we didn’t see in the markets. It started pouring rain just before we crossed the street, heading for another three advertised markets, and this was enough to deter us. We looked quite a while for a bite to eat (having left our picnic lunch in the car), and finally managed to find some reasonably priced ($2 or so) sausage rolls to tide us over before walking back to the skyrail.The ride from Kuranda to Barron Falls was much clearer than the way there, and we c...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

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Attraction | "Kuranda Skyrail: A Rainbow, Lots of Fog, & The End"

Creeping Clouds... Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of Kuranda Skyrail: Kuranda to Barron Falls.There were a fair number of other people on the various lookout platforms, but everyone was friendly, moved if you wanted a picture, and even offered to take pictures of you in front of the waterfall. We ran into one person from Melbourne, who proceeded to mock the terrible Queensland weather and its advertising as the "smart state," hoping to get a rise out of James. Unfortunately, it didn’t work, because he agreed with her (and who couldn’t agree about the unseasonably rainy weather being a bit…unwanted on a holiday?!).As we were walking back, it started pouring rain again, and we broke into a run, pounding on t...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Cairns, Queensland

Palm Cove Beach Community

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Attraction | "Palm Cove"

Palm Cove Beach Community Photo, Cairns, Australia
Quote:
After riding the Skyrail and eating our picnic lunch, it was already 2:30pm. This, combined with the fact that the forecast for the next day was 30 knot winds so our sunrise kayak was cancelled, led to a complete change of plans. We decided to take a tour of the coastline, leaving the Tablelands to the next day, when we had more time.Our first stop along the Captain Cook Highway, which leads from Cairns through Port Douglas and onwards, was Palm Cove. This was where we were supposed to have gone kayaking in the morning, so we thought we would check out what we were missing. The town was small and seemed to have a severe lack in parking; maybe everyone was in their cars, driving up and down the...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 19, 2006

Palm Cove Beach Community
Far North Queensland
Cairns, Australia

Port Douglas & The Captain Cook Highway

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Story/Tip

Lone Palm Photo, Queensland, Australia
Quote:
Some 70km north of Cairns lies the town of Port Douglas, the gateway to the Daintree Rainforest. It is advertised as "the place where glittering green merges into blue, and the only place on earth where two World Heritage listed jewels exist - the Great Barrier Reef and the rainforest of the Daintree and Cape Tribulation." The rainforest and the Cape are a short drive to the north, and the reef is a short sail to the east, making it a perfect base for tropical adventures.The Captain Cook Highway, which is the main highway between Cairns and Port Douglas, was certainly an interesting drive. It wound up and down through the mountainous coastal terrain, giving us bird's-eye-views of the coast at ...Read More