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Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

San Jose, CA
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Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

What's the best way to go from Cairns up to the Daintree and onto Cape tribulation? Should I rent a car and drive it? Or are there tours that would be better? In general we're indenpendant travelers.

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Daintree, Australia
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1. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

It is very easy to do-it-yourself if you prefer not to join a tour-group. Simply drive north from Cairns - there's only one coastal road which is one of the most scenic in Australia - it takes about two hours to the Daintree car ferry. A 10-minute crossing then a lovely rainforest drive to Cape Tribulation which takes about 40-60 minutes, depending how many times you stop.

There's a very informative CD for independent travellers - you can buy it at various tour-desks and we've just bought some for our guests who are all self-drive, and we're getting great feed-back.

daintreerainforestinformation.com/Self-Drive…

Nanaimo, Canada
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2. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

There are also free pamphlets that show the tour, and different stops to make along the way. It even has the ice cream place marked on it! North side of the ferry, left hand side.

There are some boardwalks to hike as well, well worth a stop. And Mossman Gorge, another nice stop, not that far north from Port Douglas. Pack a lunch with you, as you may find a nice place for a picnic.

San Jose, CA
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3. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

Is it worth it to stay over night somewhere or is it best as a day trip?

Sydney/Melbourne
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4. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

It would depend on how much you wanted to do and see.

The last time we visited, we spent a few hours at the Discovery Centre, wandered around most of the boardwalks, had coffee and a walk along the beach, went to Mossman Gorge for a swim and a wander around the interpretive centre and had dinner in the Dainteee Village. We didn't have time for one of the river cruises (not really on our agenda).

We left Port Douglas at about 8 am and got back after 10 pm. Add an extra hour or more to drive from Cairns and back.

If I were a first time visitor who may not have the opportunity to return, I'd want to spend a couple of days in the area.

Daintree, Australia
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5. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

If you are thinking of staying a night or two here's a good website with a lot of local info:-

destinationdaintree.com/daintreevillage.html

Cairns, Australia
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6. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

Cairns to Cape Trib', return is about 6 hours drive time. If you have the time to burn I would highly recommend spending a night somewhere along the way as it allows more time to stop and soak up the ambience of what is a truly amazing area.

Too many people rent a car and fly through the area then complain on their return that it was a lot of driving to see a pretty beach.... (common quote from many self drive visitors) "I drove past 144klms of beaches to look at a beach.......Hmmmmmmm"

If you stay overnight there are lots of nice options along the way.

There are various places to stay in the immediate area around CT , depending on the dates you are travelling this can be a nice option but things will likely be busy up there over the next 6 weeks as the whole country is on winter break.

If you rent a car I would suggest driving up to Port Douglas, then spend a couple of hours at Mossman Gorge then an afternoon river cruise on the Daintree River (for a special experience ask a local up there for contact details for "Sauce", I think his real name is Ian Worsester - or something like that).

Stay the night in the village area, Daintree Valley Haven is lovely and quite secluded (a true rainforest experience), I am sure Daphne will have Sauce's contact details

Then make an early start and cross the ferry to Cape Tribulation area.

There are a lot of tour bus options as well if you would prefer have someone else worry about the driving and time management and a few of these companies have an option to stay overnight in the accommodation around Cape Trib

It really comes down to personal preference....

Daintree, Australia
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7. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

Yes Tony, Ian "Sauce" Worcester (don't you love his name!!) is a wonderful wildlife guide and a very nice person too. We always recommend him to guests, especially any who are keen birdwatchers or wildlife enthusiasts. Sauce's early morning 2-hour cruise is, I think, the best time to be on the Daintree River to catch the dawn birds. His sunset cruise is a different experience again with many birds swooping low over the water and returning to their roosts. His small boat is especially designed for wildlife-watching with swivelling seats and no overhead canopy and his tours have to be booked in advance:-

daintreeriverwildwatch.com.au/HOME.3.0.html

A 'must-do' in Daintree Village if you love nature.

Daphne

Port Douglas...
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8. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

Are you comfortable driving on the left hand side of the road?

Cairns, Australia
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9. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

A few years ago when Sauce first got his new boat he took me upstream on Barret's(?) Creek, under the bridge. It was a real adventure and having done many, many, many river cruises in the Daintree area I would rate this as the most amazing trip ever !!

And yes, I completely agree - Sauce is an absolute gentleman with as good a knowledge base on the area and wildlife ANYONE could ever wish of their river guide (though his HUGE camera does make me a little nervous) :).

CALookingForParadise, If you are not looking for the personalised river cruise and just want to do a mainstream trip - I would rate the Daintree River Cruise Centre as the best "mainstream" boat on the river. They are located about half way between the Ferry turn off and Daintree Village (it is well sign posted). Low tide is the best time for spotting croc's....

Edited: 21 June 2013, 07:24
10. Re: Self tour or organized tours to Daintree/Cape Tribulation

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