Before Emma and I moved over to Fitzroy Island, we spent around four weeks living in Cairns and working in a little village called Palm Cove. On our days off we tried to make the most of our time in Cairns and making the effort to go and see the sights nearby. The first few weeks of our time there is detailed in my previous post, explaining all about accommodation, food and nightlife, and this is my follow up with activities in the area.
Kuranda is a village up in the Mountains, around a 30 minute drive from the centre of Cairns. It’s got two ‘markets’ you can visit, with an assortment of shops and food places. I thought they weren’t much like markets as they were fixed buildings, whereas when I think markets I expect stalls. However, it was very nice all the same and worth a visit. Emma bought some cheap henna which she’s painted on herself and we stopped for Vietnamese food which was pretty decent.
We opted to do the Jungle walk while we were there. This is a relatively short walk through the rainforest and along the riverside, offering pretty nice scenery and views. Crocodiles supposedly live in the waters and despite our efforts we unfortunately didn’t see any! It was a pleasant and easy walk, and I’d recommend doing this if in the Kuranda area.
One of the most popular Kuranda attractions is a Sky-rail line with a glass bottom floor, offering views of the rainforest below. This sounds amazing, but isn’t something managed to do that day. If the opportunity arrises though I’d happily go back to do it.
On our way back we chose to stop at Barron Falls as well, which is in the same area. There is a viewing platform and walkway, which takes just 15 minutes to walk to the end of. We went down to get a good look at the waterfall, however at this time of year we’re only just starting to enter the wet season. It was a nice view and an impressive sized waterfall, however they had pictures on display showing the waterfall in full flow at the height of wet season and it looks spectacular, so definitely visit at that time of year if you can.
Following on with our waterfall visits, we headed to Crystal Cascades another day. This is just a short 20 minute drive from Carins. This was my favourite of all the waterfalls visited to date, as while it wasn’t the most powerful or the largest, it has various swimming holes you can get in all the way up the short walk to the top of waterfall. We got in at two points and spent a couple of hours swimming and relaxing in the sun there. A warning though; the water was absolutely baltic!
Botanic Gardens was our last day out before heading over to the island. This isn’t too far from the centre of cairns, only a 10 minute drive, or around a 50 minute walk. It was a pleasant walk round the gardens with plenty of wildlife and plant-life to look at and information boards to read. Worthwhile for a relaxing day out to chill.
We still have Atherton Tablelands, Cape Tribulation / Daintree and Port Douglas on our to-do list, while we’ll do once Adam arrives in a few weeks time.