Daintree Rainforest Daintree Rainforest

The ultimate travel guide to theDaintree Rainforest

One of Australia’s most precious natural wonders, the Daintree Rainforest, at 180 million years old, is the oldest continuously living rainforest in the world. Located in Tropical North Queensland, the Daintree is part of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wet Tropics of Queensland.

For the Eastern Kuku Yalanji Aboriginal people, the Traditional Owners of this area, many natural features of the landscape have spiritual significance including Wundu (Thornton Peak), Manjal Dimbi (Mount Demi), Wurrmbu (The Bluff) and Kulki (Cape Tribulation). The Kuku Yalanji Country extends from near Cooktown to Port Douglas. Find out how to experience this incredibly special part of Australia for yourself below.

Getting to the Daintree

The Daintree is in the heart of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wet Tropics of Queensland – a world away from civilisation.

The closest airport is about 110 kilometres away in Cairns, with the sparkling ocean on one side and lush rainforest on the other, this is one of the world’s most beautiful drives.

There are two ways you can get to the Daintree from Cairns; hiring a car and making your own way on a mini road trip or jumping on one of the tours that will take you to the Daintree from Cairns, Palm Cove or Port Douglas.

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Best things to do in the Daintree

When you start planning your holiday to the Daintree, it can be difficult to decide what you want to do as there’s so much to choose from.

It’s no secret that getting to see the Daintree’s biggest resident – the saltwater crocodile – is a huge drawcard, but instead of venturing out to find a croc in the wild, luckily there are some great river cruises that take you up close and personal with a saltie.

If you’ve decided to base yourself in Cape Tribulation where the rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef, you’re perfectly situated to mix up your itinerary. You can head out on the reef, immerse yourself in traditional Kuku Yalanji cultural experiences, hike up Mt Sorrow, and so many other incredible experiences.

For those who are planning to stay around the quaint Daintree Village, there are some dreamy walks where you’ll get lost in the prettiest parts of the rainforest, lots of swimming holes (but be croc aware!), and more that will fill your days up with unforgettable memories.

There are also plenty of tours in and around the Daintree that will take the hard work out of deciding what to do.

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Where to stay in the Daintree

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From luxury lodges and off-grid escapes to holiday parks and campgrounds, there’s a Daintree accommodation to suit every style of travel – you just need to know where to look. Cape Tribulation is the most popular spot travellers base themselves in the Daintree, with its diverse range of activities and its plethora of accommodation options. Read up on our top camping spots in Cape Trib if that’s more your vibe.

If you’ve ventured out into the rest of the Daintree, the options can be more sparse so make sure you look at our guide on where to stay in the Daintree to help you book.

Tours in the Daintree

While exploring the Daintree on your own can be done, you also have the option to go through a tour. Tours take the stress out of planning everything, but they also give you an insider’s knowledge of the area. Some tours are run by local Aboriginal guides who are the traditional custodians of Kuku Yalanji country, allowing you to see and appreciate Country as intended.

Whether you do a Ngadiku Dreamtime Walk at Mossman Gorge, a tour of Daintree Ice Cream Company or a multiple-day tour from Cairns, you’ll find one for you in our list of top Daintree tours.

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