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Cape Tribulation, AustraliaCape Tribulation, AustraliaCape Tribulation, AustraliaCape Tribulation, Australia

Cape Tribulation is an area north of Daintree, which is the end of the bitumen. The Daintree Ferry provides access into the Cape Tribulation area. This is accessible by conventional vehicles except during periods of heavy rain. Coach tours and a bus service also visit this area. Some hire car companies insist on four wheel drive vehicles.
After crossing the Daintree Ferry you travel through lowland and tropical rainforest passing road junctions for Cape Kimberley and Cow Bay. There are some excellent coastal views and several tourist attractions. The road runs over several high capes and alongside attractive beaches. Camping spots and accommodation are available. A small general store is located at Cow Bay. Limited fuel access is available.

Distance From Brisbane (State Capital):1867 Kilometres north.

See the magical Daintree

Reef and rainforest touch in this region of World Heritage protected beauty. The Daintree River winds gently through tangled woodland through jungle homes of unique birds, pythons and crocodiles, north to Cape Tribulation, a spectacular national park. A naturalist’s paradise, this World Heritage region is recognised for its superb wildlife, and eco-tourism operators provide itineraries offering fascinating insights into the creatures that inhabit this remote and beautiful river-system. On the Daintree River, cruise boats glide between the jungle homes of birds, animals and reptiles including large crocodiles and pythons. After the ferry crossing, the coastal road continues north over tidal rivers and creeks and through small settlements to the renowned wilderness areas of Cape Tribulation and Bloomfield Falls. Cape Tribulation is the most northern settlement of the region and surrounded by a national park where visitors can enjoy bushwalking, night spotting for wildlife and visit the Bloomfield Falls. Between the Daintree and Bloomfield Rivers, the forest slopes of Cape Tribulation National Park plunge to the waters of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, where reefs grow almost to the seashore.  

Activites and Experiences at Cape Tribulation

  • Off Road Driving Check all road and weather conditions before entering the area. Detailed maps will indicate suitable vehicle use and road conditions. RACQ, local authorities and vehicle hire outlets can advise on current conditions for travelling. Also check that your insurance covers wilderness and remote areas north of Port Douglas. The Daintree River ferry operates from 6am to midnight daily. Christmas and Good Friday excepted. The ‘Bloomfield Track’ north of Cape Tribulation is suitable for 4WD vehicles only.
  • Art and Craft making The unique lifestyle, mixed cultures and natural attractions of the Cape have inspired local and visiting artists for countless decades. The vibrant hues, the shapes and forms of the landscape and wildlife, influence locally produced art works that are often displayed and are available to purchase in galleries throughout the area. Indigenous art created by local aboriginal tribes such as the ‘Kuku Yalanji’ are especially worth viewing.
  • Birdwatching Many varieties of native birds, including parrots, cassowaries, eagles, sun-birds, the noisy pitta and owls nest in the area. The beautiful brilliant blue ‘Ulysses’ butterfly can often be sighted in rainforest gullies. The white-tailed Kingfisher may also be seen during its summer migration from Papua Guinea. Guided tours are available and the Environment Centre has the latest up to date information on all the bird species in the area.
  • Bushwalking Bush walks vary to cater to all levels of fitness. ‘Jindalba’ is a short 650m boardwalk providing excellent views across different levels of the rainforest. ‘Dubuji’ features a 1200 metre boardwalk through rainforest, mangroves and swamps. Interpretive signs describe rainforest plant and animal life cycles. Picnic areas and toilets are located along the way. For the more adventurous 3 – 9km walks are accessible with the ‘tough – all day’ mighty Mount Sorrow awaiting the very fit. Contact the local National Parks and Wildlife Service for further information.
  • Camping The national parks camping sites range from basic sites with only toilet, water and shower stand to sites that include shower blocks and barbecues. A camping permit may be obtained from the local park ranger or from self-registration stands at the national park camp ground. Maximum stay at these camping sites is seven nights. Private camping grounds and hostels are also available. Additional amenities such as power, laundry, food supplies and shower blocks are usually available. This is an inexpensive alternative for budget travellers and for those who enjoy the delights of the camping experience.
  • Cruising Crocodile spotting and Daintree River cruises are available in the area.
  • Scuba-Diving Scuba Diving and snorkelling are popular activities that locals and visitors participate in throughout the year. Organised trips can be arranged where qualified instructors are ready to teach you the basics on your journey out to the reef should you require assistance. You can then safely snorkel or try an introductory dive. Even for inexperienced swimmers, most tour operators provide full instruction, supervision and floatation devices. Diving trips range from full day tours to extended five day trips.
  • Driving Check all road and weather conditions before entering the area. Detailed maps will indicate suitable vehicle use and road conditions. RACQ, local authorities and vehicle hire outlets can advise on current conditions for travelling. Also check that your insurance covers wilderness and remote areas north of Port Douglas. The Daintree River ferry operates from 6am to midnight daily. Christmas and Good Friday excepted. The ‘Bloomfield Track’ north of Cape Tribulation is suitable for 4WD vehicles only.
  • Fishing – Beach Beach fishing is possible all along the peninsular at Cape Kimberley, Snapper Island, Cow Bay, Thornton Beach to name just a few.
  • Fishing – Estuary Dropping a line in the calm waters of the local estuaries has long been a popular way to spend a couple of hours relaxing. Why not hire your own gear or join an organised charter tour. Fish for Barramundi, Mangrove Jack, Queenfish and Trevally. Once you have got your nibble, the powerful jumps of the might Barramundi with their flared gills, will make you appreciate why this type of fishing is so popular with the ‘not so fainted hearted’ and novice alike.
  • Fishing – Trout/Fly Fly fishing is one of the fastest growing methods of fishing. Increasing demand has meant that expert guides are available to assist in catching fresh water species such as Jungle Perch, Sooty Grunter and Tarper. Open ocean species such as Marlin and Sailfish often become the ultimate achievement for the enthusiast.
  • Flora The area is recognised as one of the most bio-diverse in the World. The rich varied flora has a number of species that are found here and nowhere else. These forests are thought to have been the evolutionary cradle of much of unique wildlife. The environmental centre 29kms south of the Cape, contains a wealth of information as well as interactive displays of all the local flora.
  • Horseriding Imagine cantering through lightly forested valleys and then gently walking your horse through unspoilt rainforest, streams and cane fields. Take a break and have a swim and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the forest, whilst enjoying light refreshments or lunch. Full and half day horseback adventures await you if this is your interest.
  • Scenic Flight Scenic flights can be arranged from Port Douglas or the Daintree village.
  • Shopping A small general store is located 25 kilometres south of the Cape at Cow Bay. Other food outlets are located throughout the area. Limited fuel supplies are available at Cow Bay and north on Cape Tribulation road. There are no banking facilities at north of the Daintree river, although eftpos and credit card facilities may be available at accommodation and tourist locations.
  • Sightseeing There is so much to see at Cape Tribulation. From the ferry trip across the Daintree river, you will be transported into the impressive World Heritage Wet tropics region. Whether you drive yourself or take a guided tour, you will find an endless array of spectacular scenery, natural attractions, intriguing activities, amazing sports and a variety of accommodation awaiting you. With such a large range of options, travellers would be well advised to seek reliable advice from before they arrive. To meet your specific touring needs, ensure that you plan and book well in advance. Many booking agencies are able to arrange both accommodation and tours within the area at the same time for your convenience.
  • Skiing – Water Tours can be arranged in the local area or from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Skydiving Tours can be arranged in the local area or from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Snorkelling Scuba Diving and snorkelling are popular activities that locals and visitors participate in throughout the year. Organised trips can be arranged where qualified instructors are ready to teach you the basics on your journey out to the reef should you require assistance. You can then safely snorkel or try an introductory dive. Even for inexperienced swimmers, most tour operators provide full instruction, supervision and floatation devices. Diving trips range from full day tours to extended five day trips.
  • Spotlighting Tours can be arranged in the local area or from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Wind Surfing Tours can be arranged in the local area or from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Swimming Swimming is a popular activity throughout the year. Some sightings of crocodiles and marine box jelly fish have been noted during the summer months in coastal areas and in some inland waterways. As an alternative to beach swimming many accommodation venues, have swimming pools. Immersing yourself in a mountain rainforest stream or pool, is also a wonderfully relaxing way to let the heat of a warm summer’s day drift away.
  • Bush Tucker Tours can be arranged in the local area or from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Animal Viewing Wallabies, Koalas, Platypus, Crocodiles and venomous snakes are just a few examples of the many native animals that can be viewed and photographed at local wildlife parks. Many varieties of native birds, including Parrots, Cassowaries, Eagles, Owls, and Kingfishers can also be seen. The beautiful brilliant blue ‘Ulysses’ butterfly can often be sighted in rainforest gullies. Guided tours are available in the local area.
  • Marine Animal watching Crocodile spotting as well as Reef and River cruise tours are available. For a limited time during the spring months, Reef spawning can be seen via diving tours. This extraordinary event captures mass reproduction of all coral life forms on the reef. Check local tourist agencies for further details.
  • Walking Interpretative walks lead by experienced local guides will have you descending into the pristine rainforest, along private tracks in search of creatures of the night. You can also join full or half-day treks that take to rainforest, lush mountain streams, waterfalls and spectacular lookouts. Group sizes vary to suit large gatherings or just a few. Check with the local information tourist centres for more information.
  • Water-based Scuba Diving tours and fishing charters are available in the area.
  • Accommodation Basic bush camping as well as affordable camping grounds with modern facilities are readily available throughout the area. Hostel and pub style accommodation are also available as are a number of very comfortable resorts and rainforest retreats.
  • Airport An airstrip is located at Cow Bay – four kilometres south of the Cape with flights to Cairns. The next nearest airports are located at Port Douglas and Cairns.
  • Automatic Teller Machine There are no banking facilities at Cape Tribulation, although eftpos and credit card facilities may be available at accommodation and tourist locations.
  • Banking Facilities There are no banking facilities at Cape Tribulation, although eftpos and credit card facilities may be available at accommodation and tourist locations.
  • Beach Cow Bay beach is a popular swimming beach in winter and a spectacular beach to walk along all year round. Thornton beach is located about 14kms north of the Cow Bay turn off. Rainforest fringes this beautiful beach. A quiet spot to fish or simply breathe in the ocean air. Cape Tribulation beach has self-guided walks along the boardwalk and then you might meander along the main beach. Make sure you look out for the unique sand designs that the local ocean crabs create on the beach at low tide.
  • Bottled Gas Bottled gas is available at limited fuel stations at Cow Bay and to the north on Cape Tribulation road.
  • Coach Stop Daily transfers and shuttle services are available between Cairns and Cape Tribulation. Its an excellent alternative for travellers without a vehicle to commute and not miss out on experiencing all that Cape Tribulation has to offer.
  • Currency Exchange The nearest centre for currency exchange is at Mossman or Port Douglas.
  • Dentist The nearest dental services are located at Mossman or Port Douglas.
  • Electronic Funds Transfer at Point Of Sale There are no banking facilities at Cape Tribulation, although eftpos and credit card facilities may be available at accommodation and tourist locations.
  • Fuel Limited fuel supplies are available at Cow Bay and to the north on Cape Tribulation road.
  • Hospital The nearest hospital is located at Mossman 30 kilometres south of the Daintree River crossing. For emergencies call 000
  • Public Bar The local pub is located at Cow Bay. Enjoy a sumptuous meal with a chilled glass of wine or beer. Accommodation is also available on site.
  • Medical Facilities The nearest medical services are at the Daintree village and the nearest hospital is located at Mossman 30 kilometres south of the Daintree River crossing. For emergencies call 000.
  • National Park Cape Tribulation is part of the Daintree National Park (17100ha) stretching from the Daintree River in the south to the Bloomfield River in the north. The McDowall Range forms the western boundary. The land slopes steeply up from the coast to the cloud-swept summit of Thornton Peak (1374m), only a few kilometres inland. Your trip to the area will offer a rare chance to experience both the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics World Heritage regions. Both are highly valued for their botanical, marine and scientific wealth.
  • Newsagent Newspapers and other associated items can be purchased from the local outlets in the area.
  • Police Fore emergencies, ring ‘000’ – The nearest police, ambulance, hospital and fire services are located at Mossman, 30 kilometres south of the Daintree river ferry.
  • Post Office Limited postal services are available from the general store. The nearest postal services are at Daintree township, Mossman and Port Douglas.
  • Public Telephone Public phones can be located at tourist and accommodation sites.
  • Restaurant Restaurants and cafes are available at tourist and accommodation sites.
  • Supermarket A small general store is located at Cow Bay – 25 kilometres south of the Cape
  • Takeaway Food Take away food outlets are located at tourist and accommodation sites.
  • Visitor Centres The Daintree environmental centre is located 29 kilometres south of Cape Tribulation. Learn about and meet a friendly bat at the ‘Bat House’ just a few kilometres south of the Cape. Comprehensive static displays, theatres, videos, self-guided interpretive boardwalks as well as the rainforest tower make a visit to both of these interpretative environmental centres a must of all visitors.
  • Adventure Adventure tours can be arranged in the area with local experienced guides and from Port Douglas and the Daintree village.
  • Aussie Lifestyle Enjoy meeting some of the locals as part of the laid back way of life. Experience some bush tucker or just have a chat. They can be very helpful regarding local knowledge.
  • Beach Beaches abound all along the peninsular. Cape Kimberley, Cow Bay, Thornton Beach are wonderfully peaceful to meander along or fish on. Cape Tribulation beach has an interpretive boardwalk that will offer lots of information on the local fauna and flora.
  • Caravan and Camping There are many locations with modern and comfortable facilities in the area. Travelling north on the coastal road to Bloomfield is not suitable for Caravans.
  • Cruise Crocodile spotting and Daintree River cruises are available in the area.
  • Diving Scuba Diving and snorkelling are popular activities that locals and visitors participate in throughout the year. Organised tours can be arranged where qualified instructors are ready to teach you, should you require assistance. Experience safe and exhilarating dives viewing and interacting with a diversity of reef ecosystems. The pristine conditions give rise to an amazing collection of fish, crustaceans, molluscs, corals and other marine organisms. Over 6,000 species of plants and animals co-exist on the reef.
  • Eco Tourism Because Cape Tribulation is located in a nature based attraction, Eco Tourism is widely practiced to ensure our pristine environment is protected.
  • Environmental The Daintree environmental centre is located 29 kilometres south of Cape Tribulation. Learn about and meet a friendly bat at the ‘Bat House’ just a few kilometres south of the Cape. Comprehensive static displays, theatres, videos, self-guided interpretive boardwalks as well as the rainforest tower make a visit to both of these interpretative environmental centres a must of all visitors.
  • Farm/Station Visit an exotic fruit farm and consider staying a few days. Experience and learn how an organic tropical orchard uses sustainable permiculture in the tropics. Taste test some of the fantastic locally grown exotic fruits fresh off the tree. Or just drop in for a delicious tropical drink or a cool ice cream on a warm day.
  • Fishing Fishing is considered as very popular and first class all year round. The weather and variety of natural environments make the area a paradise for reef, beach and estuary fishing. Bring your own rod and relax by the waters edge or join an organised tour where the skipper knows the local conditions and tides and can pick just the right spot to drop a line over board. Imagine the excitement of snaring a fresh Coral Trout, Barramundi or Reef fish and the chance to take one home for dinner.
  • Flora and Fauna From sandy beaches to rainforests, masses of diverse plant and animal life are abundant. Palms, ferns orchids, vines, epiphytes and stunningly beautiful butterflies are just some examples. The environment centre offers a comprehensive introduction to botanical and scientific information about all the local native flora and fauna. Most of the animals and plants in the area are protected when left undisturbed can be admired from a distance.
  • Historic/Heritage During 1770’s, Captain James Cook became stuck when he round aground on what later became known as ‘Endeavour Reef’. After overcoming many difficult trials and tribulations faced by himself and his crew, he returned to Cooktown for repairs. As stories of courage became legendary in the area over time, the cape was to eventually become known as Cape Tribulation. In more recent times, the area has become part of the World Heritage Listed Wet Tropics. This living museum has been relatively left undisturbed for 100 million years, spared from both environmental changes and human exploitation. The area is now very accessible with more sealed roads and amenities for visitor comfort and convenience when travelling and exploring the Cape.
  • Indulgence/Luxury Fancy relaxing in a spa or indulging in a massage? A romantic candlelit dinner? Take a quiet moment to meditate or read another chapter of your favourite book? Maybe your taste is to savour breakfast on the balcony of your private cabin overlooking the rainforest, whilst enjoying the choral performances of the native birdlife. Private luxury accommodation awaits and will be a wonderful touch to add to all the other memorable experiences during your stay at the Cape.
  • National Park Cape Tribulation is part of the Daintree National Park (17100 hectares) stretching from the Daintree River in the south to the Bloomfield River in the north. The McDowall Range forms the western boundary. The land slopes steeply up from the coast to the cloud-swept summit of Thornton Peak (1374 metres), only a few kilometres inland. Your trip to the area will offer a rare chance to experience both the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics World Heritage regions. Both are highly valued for their botanical, marine and scientific wealth.
  • Nature based Cape Tribulation is a nature based attraction and every effort is made to ensure our pristine environment is protected.
  • Nightlife Spend a quiet evening simply enjoying the sounds of this pristine environment or perhaps arrange a guided night spotlighting activity. Many accommodation venues can also arrange evening entertainment for your pleasure.
  • Off road The main road through to Cape Tribulation is sealed, but the road to the north ‘The Bloomfield Track’ is only suitable for 4WD vehicles. Check all road and weather conditions before entering the area. Detailed maps will indicate suitable vehicle and road conditions. RACQ, local authorities and vehicles hire outlets can advise on current conditions. Also check that your insurance covers wilderness and remote areas north of Port Douglas.
  • Rainforest Cape Tribulation is renowned as ‘the place where the rainforest meets the reef’. The rainforest envelopes the Cape and contains some of the most prolific and complex plant communities on earth including giant palms 3,000 years old as well as a number of primitive flowering plant species. Under the rainforest canopy some of the worlds most colourful and exotic animals can be found. It is a haven for unique and sometimes endangered animals such as the white-tailed rat, the wompoo pigeon, and the white-tailed kingfisher that emigrates from Papua New Guinea each summer.
  • Reef The Great Barrier Reef lies just off shore of Cape Tribulation. Reef tours can be arranged in the local area. For more information chat with the tourist centre at Mossman, Port Douglas or your accommodation location.
  • Water based Scuba Diving tours and fishing charters are available in the area.
  • Wilderness Accredited tour operators can arrange for half day to four day trips into remote rainforest and wilderness areas. You will be taken to some secret spots that only your guide can show you. They will provide information about the animals, plants and the wider ecosystems of each area visited. Once you have been on a tour you may like to venture out on your own.
  • Wildlife Native birds and wildlife may sometimes be seen in their natural habitat when travelling in the area. You may spot wildlife from a vehicle or boat on an organised tour in the rainforest or on the reef. Sightings from your accommodation or when walking at dawn or dusk are not uncommon and excite the senses. Kangaroos, possums, bandicoots, parrots, eagles, hawks, sun-birds, bee-eaters, exotic lizards, geckoes, brilliant blue butterflies (Ulysses) and the elusive Cassowary live in rainforest areas. Coral Trout, Groupers, Barramundi, eels, sting-ray, estuary fish as well as very colourful crustaceans, molluscs, hard and soft corals, sponges and starfish are just a few examples of the vast array of sea creatures that may be discovered on the reef.
  • World Heritage Cape Tribulation is centrally located in a World Heritage reef and rainforest. Conserving its outstanding natural and cultural values for the benefit of local, national and international communities is of the greatest importance. The local environmental centre is a wonderful source of information providing displays, theatres, videos and written materials.
  • RTN, QH and National Distributors (TQ)
  • Backpacking/Unstructured

Nearest Airport: Port Douglas

Tours In Cape Tribulation

Discover some of the tours options around Cape Tribulation

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