Starting just south-west of Cairns and rising more than 900m above sea level, the Atherton Tableland is a fertile volcanic region, a haven for many bird species and an incredible range of wildlife including the elusive platypus and the rare Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo.
A cooler climate, courtesy of its altitude, fertile basalt soils, good rainfall and plenty of sunshine makes the Tableland the ideal place for farming, delivering delicious produce such as mangoes, citrus, strawberries, bananas, dairy products, tea and coffee amongst many others. You can even grab fresh produce from one of the many roadside farm-gate stalls – just drop your money into the honesty box, hey!
Driving South – it’s all about sugarcane and banana farmland… lots of bananas.
Our Atherton Tableland Tour itinerary includes easy scenic walks through the rainforest and across elevated rainforest canopy walkways, beautiful waterfalls surrounded by thick vegetation, a scenic drive with a bit of local history thrown in, followed by a cruise along the river to spot some local crocs. An Italian Buffet Lunch and fruit tasting is included and a swimming opportunity depending on the situation.
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Many visitors to Cairns miss this area, but for us is a must-do, no doubt. This tour offers more of a scenic itinerary that includes easy walking trails through dense rainforest, a drive through farmland surroundings and a visit to a volcanic crater lake at Lake Barrine for a cruise and to sample some of Queensland’s best home baked scones. And you won’t believe the seriously giant fig trees we’re going to see. We’ll check if the Eastern Grey Kangaroos are feeling sociable today and then do a brief stop in Kuranda for lunch and to board the scenic Skyrail Gondola Cableway for a trip gliding above the rainforest canopy down to the coast.
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We will start our journey driving up to Kuranda along the Kuranda Range, a natural tunnel made of ancient and thick Rainforest and up to 330mt above the sea level.
Early in the morning is the best time to enjoy a river cruise in the calm waters of the beautiful Barron River with great photographic opportunities and an insight into some of the local history and the surrounding ancient tropical rainforest.
The river is home to a host of wildlife including freshwater crocodiles (Crocodylus johnsoni), turtles, snakes, water dragons and fish together with over 100 species of tropical birds.
At the end of the guided tour, tea/coffee will be served in a private setting in the middle of the rainforest. Sometimes you may also be lucky enough to see a Cassowary!.
Time now for a relaxing walk where your guide will show you many examples of tropical flora and fauna and at the end, the best view of the spectacular Barron Falls await for you.
Some free time to explore Kuranda and have some lunch. Feel the yet hippie style of this happy village where the motto is: “grow your own food, do your own thing”.
To end the journey, you will be gliding on top of the Barron Gorge National Park, aboard Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, the most scenic and environmentally sensitive way to visit the this bit of the Wet Tropics World Heritage area. Home of the Buluwai Aboriginal people, the different seasons, the
changing weather and time of the day, rule the behaviour of the rainforest’s plants and wildlife making your 7.5 km journey unique.
Amongst cane sugar fields, it is time now to return home on a sunset setting, just the perfect end of a memorable journey.