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Where to do Tours from

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Where to do Tours from

Hi everyone

I've been doing lots of reading, which has been a fantastic help but I'm still not sure about a few things.

I'm travelling with my 14 yo son and we arrive 6 July for 10 nights. After tearing my hair out with deciding on accommodation (and actually finding availability at the last minute), I've booked the first 7 nights at Novotel Palm Cove and the last 3 at Hilton Cairns. We are from Sydney, and will be in the NT for a week prior to this. Sooo my question is which locale should be do tours from. I'm not going to drive (because I actually want to see things instead of the road :P), so will be doing the 'tourist coach thang' and would like to get to Daintree, Atherton Tablelands, Kuranda and the Outer Reef. After trying to come up with some kind of itinerary I'm a little confused. I was thinking of doing Daintree, Kuranda and Outer Reef (ex Port Douglas) from Palm Cove and then Atherton when we are in Cairns itself, having a day's rest in between each days touring.

Also, should I prebook anything as it's school holidays, or just wait until we get there. Are there any tour operators better than others or are they all really much of a muchness?

Thoughts, suggestions or ideas welcome



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1. Re: Where to do Tours from

For seeing the Atherton tablelands, I can highly recommend the tour offered by On the Wallaby. I did an overnight one, but they do a day one. It was action packed and very interesting:


If you do choose to go on the overnight tour (and I would recommend it, as the optional night canoeing where I saw a platypus is one of my most vivid memories), you can read reviews of the place you stay here:


Whoever you choose to go with, you'll have a lovely time. Wish I was going too!

Cairns, Australia
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2. Re: Where to do Tours from

Hi, am also from Sydney but have lived near Cairns for 15 years.

Palm Cove is Cairns' most northerly beach suburb, about 30 minutes north of Cairns city. So you'd be best to take your Daintree trip from PC - can recommend either Billy Tea Safaris or Trek North. Both take small groups and have knowledgeable guides.

All reef trips out of Cairns have shuttles to pick up (and drop off) at Palm Cove, and a couple pick up at Palm Cove Jetty. Transfer charges will apply for most ( two exceptions are Ocean Spirit to Michaelmas Cay and Frankland Islands) - from Cairns Hilton you're only a minute or two's walk from Marlin Marina where boats leave for reef.

Atherton Tablelands are easily reachable from either Cairns city or PC - Wilderness Eco Safaris pick up at Palm Cove, its a small group 4WD day trip and Steve has permits for off road restricted areas, so there's no crowds. www.wildernessecosafaris.com

Kuranda Train/Skyrail - from Cairns city you can catch train, thus eliminating one transfer cost - from Palm Cove transfer costs will be applicable - book this with Skyrail who'll pick up at your accommodation and take you to either Skyrail or Freshwater Connection - this station is closer to Palm Cove than the one in Cairns city. Note that the bottom Skyrail station is nowhere near either train station, although at Kuranda they're side-by-side; this means that at least one transfer to your accommodation will be necessary.

July is the busiest month in FNQ, so it would be wise to pre-book, if only a couple of days in advance.

Hope this helps

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3. Re: Where to do Tours from

Thanks for the feedback guys!

Port Douglas
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4. Re: Where to do Tours from


Another suggestion for your tour to Daintree, is Gary's Safaris, They are a local Port Douglas Tour Company, which do alot of tours for the resorts in Palm Cove. They have an excellent reputation for giving a great day out. Their lunch is at a restaurant, so any dietary requirements aren't a problem. They have been operating for the last 20yrs, so have a wealth of experience.

If you want a bit of cultral experience mixed into the day, ask for their guide Petrina. She's a ball of fun as well.

Hope this suggestion helps.

5. Re: Where to do Tours from

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