Deep in the Daintree – What to do in Cairns vol.2

I know it’s been a while since I have posted on wine, but no worries, after this trip to the Daintree we will move on to Adelaide and the surrounding wine regions. Exciting! I just thought it was worth posting these nice pictures from the rainforest. In addition, there are some foody delights from the jungle that deserve a mention. How does lunch in the middle of the jungle sound? Or rainforest ice cream? For entering the Daintree, we used a small tour company called Discovery Tours Australia. We left from Cairns in the morning, and returned the same evening.

The Daintree is considered the oldest continually surviving tropical rainforest in the world. The tropical forest grows right down to the edge of the sea meeting the Great Barrier Reef. This tropical forest has one of the most complex ecosystems in the world, and the ideal conditions have meant that many species of plants and animals have had no reason to change. So what is quite exciting is that some of the species found here are like living fossils.

Our trip started with scones and tea at Mossman gorge. The tradition of having scones with tea reminded me of our time in London. I suppose its something that has carried on from the Brits. At Mossman there is a rainforest walkway above the ground. Its a good way to stay out of the way of all the creepy crawlies, and observe plant life up close. The walkway leads to a stream and small beach, where one can dip in the clean, but cold water. Watch out for the horse flies though. They are ruthless and their bite hurts like hell.

The next stop on our trip was the Daintree Tea House for lunch. The owner is a fruit enthusiast. So, our lunch consisted of steak, fries and a colorful collection of tropical fruits. He also held a nice speech about fruits while we were eating. Weird, but fun.

On our way to Cape Tribulation, we also did an hour of crocodile hunting. I have no pictures, since the crocks had decided to take their afternoon nap under water. But it was a hot day, so a cruise on the river with a solar powered boat was quire refreshing. We did see some frogs and butterflies and mangrove forest.

Cape Tribulation beach is known as the spot where Captain Cook had to make landfall due to the coral reef damaging his ship (1770). The word tribulation refers to ordeals or trials, and the story goes that Captain Cook and his crew had a tough time on this beach. The beach its self is beautiful, but I can imagine the surrounding rainforest being tough to handle. It took forever just to build a road to this place. Imagine being stranded here. The beach is also special as this is where the Great Barrier Reef meets the Daintree rainforest. This beach as many others in the Daintree are not always safe for swimming. Depending on the season, the waters may have jellyfish, some of them even deadly.

Last but not least, the final stop of our tour was the Daintree ice cream company, which is a family owned business on the dark side of the Daintree. The dark side refers to the North part of the river, where there is no prone reception and occasionally no electricity. The home made ice creams feature awesome flavors such as Ironbark honey & almond and macademia & coconut. The ice creams are home made with fresh fruits from the forest. The shop is very cute, but touristy (I guess its good they have the volume to survive)., however, quality is exquisite!

In addition to the above activities, we did some additional walks in the forest and stopped at a few nice viewing points. Even though the trip was made in a small group, the day was a bit too tightly schedules. It felt like a tourist trip, but I guess that feeling is hard to avoid. I still would like to recommend the company. Especially for the ecological choices they made along the way such as the solar powered river cruise. The tour group was also small, maximum 12 people.

From the jungle to wine country, next week I promise some pics and recommendations to Adelaide Hills.

xx Soile

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At Mossman gorge
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Small beach at Mossman rainforest
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Having lunch in the Daintree at the Daintree Tea House
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Mangrove forest
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Cape Tribulation beach
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Another walk in the Daintree – mangrove roots peeking out of the ground
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Mossman gorge walk
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In the Daintree
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In the Daintree
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Little crabs on Tribulation beach
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In the Daintree
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In the mangrove forest

 

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