Tropical North Queensland is a popular destination for tourists all over the world. With what we get to see every day, it is easy to see why. This list is designed for those tourists who haven’t been to Cairns before, and would like to explore as much as they can. Listed below are the top things to do in Far North Queensland.
1. Cairns ZOOM & Wildlife Dome
Obviously first on this list is the Cairns ZOOM & Wildlife Dome, it is one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland. Situating on top of the Cairns Reef Hotel Casino, Cairns ZOOM is a popular tourist attraction. Recognised as the world’s first challenge ropes course in a wildlife park! So, whilst you are zip-lining around the park, you will have birds, snakes and crocodiles around you.
Cairns ZOOM gives you the opportunity to either visit our wildlife park, undertake our challenge ropes courses, or a mixture of both. Once entering the wildlife park, you will be greeted by our friendly talkative cockatoos. Have a chat to Jo Jo and see if he will put on a dance for you! Following the path around will lead you towards our reptiles and freshwater crocodiles. Mixing with the freshwater crocodiles are our tiny turtles. Because both animals aren’t territorial animals, they all get along well and have become best friends!
If you are adventurous and are wanting an adrenaline rush, the ZOOM activities are perfect for you. The activities include:
- Mid & Hi-Zoom
- Dome Climb
- Power Jump
- Pirate Climb
- And Commando Climb
After you have finished all of your activities, why not end your visit with animal photos. At certain times during the day you have the chance to hold a cute and cuddly koala and get your photo taken! With all that was mentioned, you understand why this is one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland.
2. Wildlife Habitat, Port Douglas
Situated an hour outside of Cairns CBD is the Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas. This wildlife park gives you the opportunity to meet and interact with numerous gorgeous animals. There are multiple ways you can have an enjoyable and memorable experience at this park. These include either:
- General admission to the park
- Breakfast with the birds
- Lunch with the lorikeets
- Picnic with the parrots
- WildNIGHT Habitat Tour
- Or your very own private wildlife habitat tour
Home to many animals, the wildlife park is split up into different environmental areas. This includes the Woodland, Wetlands, Rainforest and Savannah. These areas are open to the public and are homes different species of animals.
Scattered throughout the day are various animal shows and feature creature photo opportunities. The shows include entertaining and educational talks about Koalas, salt water crocodiles, small birds, reptiles and cassowary feedings.
After you finish exhausted yourself with animal cuddles and photos, the café situated in the middle of the park is a delicious place to rest. With lunch, snack and cold drink options, the café is definitely one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland.
3. Rainforestation Nature Park
Amidst the beautiful Kuranda rainforest is the stunning Rainforestation Nature Park. With only a 30-minute drive out of Cairns CBD, Rainforestation is one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland. Providing a deep insight into the aboriginal history of Australia and our local wildlife, Rainforestation has been a popular attraction for tourists all over the world.
Upon purchasing the Big Nature Package at reception, you have the freedom to choose what you want to do and when. Included with the package is access to the koala and wildlife park, Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience and the Army Duck Rainforest Tour.
Whether you are wanting to wander at your leisure or join a guided tour group, you will be immersed with local wildlife. The experienced keepers are always ready to answer any questions you may have, and if you are lucky they may be able to get you cuddling a koala or kangaroo. Amongst the wildlife are some more exotic and rare creatures. These include Neville the Tassie devil, two beautiful dingo puppies, and Kita the cassowary.
The Army Duck Experience is one of the iconic parts of this park. These World War II amphibious vehicles take you on a 45-minute rainforest tour. During this your, your knowledgeable duck captain will identify and explain fascinating plans and wildlife as you drive past. This tour will include visits to local fruits and information on how the aboriginal locals use to prepare them.
Finishing up your visit at the park, wander aimlessly through the gift shop. Full of locally made products, you can purchase them as unique gift ideas or as memory for yourself.
4. Australian Butterfly Sanctuary
Just down the road from the Rainforestation is the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Home to over 2000 butterflies, it is a perfect way to start or end your day in Kuranda. Like the previous parks, you have the option to wander around the park by yourself. However you also can join a guided tour with an experienced guide.
Upon entry into the main aviary is two signs with information of what butterflies they keep in their park. Why not see how many different species you can see on your trip? Next to the main aviary is the laboratory, recently laid butterfly eggs are cleaned and placed into dishes to hatch. Inside they also deal with the caterpillars and their food, as well as releasing them once they become a mature butterfly.
With so many different species of butterflies, the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary must also have many different species of feeding plants. Because each species of butterfly feed of different plants, it is more cost effective for the Butterfly Sanctuary to grow these plants locally. Once grown, they are then harvested and used within the aviary and laboratory.
Also in the park is the UV light display. This room give you the ability to see through a butterfly’s eyes and see how different colours appear. Finally, following the pathway will bring you back into the egg laying area. This area if full of the different species of plants, so each different type of butterfly can lay its eggs. As soon as the eggs are laid, the friendly team cut the leaf and take it to the laboratory for the next stage of its development.
This wildlife park is something that you can easily add onto your Kuranda tour. Whether in the morning or afternoon, it is definitely one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland.
5. Tropic Wings day tours
Tropic Wings Cairns Tours & Charters are the go to for your daily and overnight tour trips. With trips to Kuranda, Cape Tribulation, the reef and around Cairns City, they have the perfect trip for everyone.
All the different Kuranda tours available include some of the previous tourist attractions mentioned. With so many different tours, you can pick one with a mix of all the different attractions. Along with the different parks you visit, you get to ride on a mixture of coaches, Skyrail and Kuranda Scenic Rail.
Moving a little further out of the Cairns region, Tropic Wings also provide daily and overnight tours to Cape Tribulation. Tours consisting of scenic coastal dives, Wildlife Habitat visits, lunch and rainforest walks, Tropic Wings tours have the perfect trip for everyone. Whether you choose the daily or overnight tours, you have the chance to meet with wildlife in their natural habitat.
What type of holiday would it be if you didn’t get to go swimming in Far North Queensland! Tropic Wings also provides trips to Green Island and to the outer Great Barrier Reef. With optional activities such as snorkelling and introductory dives, scenic helicopter flights and professional massage treatments, Tropic Wings Reef tours have everything you need. Covering Kuranda, Cape Tribulation and the Great Barrier Reef, Tropic Wings tours are one of the best things to do in North Queensland.
6. Crystal Cascades
If the ocean is looking a little rough, or you would prefer swimming in cool freshwater, Crystal Cascades is definitely a top option. Situated just outside of the suburb Redlynch, this freshwater swimming location is full of waterfalls, water wildlife and rainforest. From where you park your car, there is a pathway that stretches for a couple of kilometres. Alongside this pathway is various staircases which lead you to the stunning pristine water.
The water cascades down the beautiful mountain, creating several different waterfalls and lookouts. There are freshwater swimming spots scattered around the Cairns region, however Crystal Cascade is definitely one of the best things to do in Far North Queensland. Swimming is only permitted in allocated areas for safety reasons. So, if you do decide to go, make sure you take a pair of enclosed shoes and pay attention to the different signs.
Photo courtesy of: We Seek Travel
7. Hot Air Ballooning
Whether you are wanting a relaxing scenic trip, or a way to witness many iconic attraction at once, hot air ballooning is definitely a top thing to do in Cairns. Hot Air Balloons Cairns is Australia’s largest and most respected balloon operator. They have daily tours departing from Cairns, Port Douglas, Yungaburra, Cairns beaches and Atherton Tablelands, with door to door transfers included in the tours.
With 100% money back if the weather causes cancellations, what could be better than finishing your Cairns trip with a relaxing hot air balloon ride over Cairns and its Surroundings.
Photo courtesy of: We Seek Travel
8. Great Barrier Reef
Last, but certainly not least is the beautiful Great Barrier Reef! Whether you plan to snorkel, dive, visit islands and cays, or just take a boat trip, this natural wonder will be one to remember. Check out some of the Reef and Rainforest packages available, and tick off two bucket list items in two days!
Photo courtesy of: We Seek Travel