After two days in Cairns we decided to rent another car to leave the city life behind and explore the area around Cairns. Unfortunately no camper van whatsoever was available so we had to give the tent a try and hired a little Hyundai Getz.
On Friday 7th November we headed north towards famous Cape Tribulation. Hadn’t really slept the night before cos I went out with Lee and Leigh and the two Dutch girls Soe-tjoe and Sharon to wander along the Esplanade at night, trying to spot crocodiles that had been sighted right at the beach. Eventually ended up killing Leigh’s mobile phone with a very accurate throw of some sort of nut (I’m rally sorry, I only wanted to hurt you like you hurt me, not brake your phone!) and having water fights at Lee’s room until the early morning. So I was back in my bed at about 7am, just before wake-up time basically.
Before leaving Cairns I also had to sort out my visa which took ages due to a computer brakedown in the office. Eventually I got the extension as a visitor until end of January and we finally hit the road north.
First stop was Mossman Gorge, a beautiful river with crystal clear, cold water which flows between round granite boulders through rainforest. We arrived quite late so the swim had to wait till the next morning. We pulled into a little road leading through sugar cane fields and put the tent up, fighting off millions of mozzies. It was so hot! Hardly any ventilation inside the tent but opening the door would mean exposing ourselves to hungry mozzies – we’d rather sweat until we fell asleep.
After the really refreshing swim the next morning we drove on to the Daintree river ferry to cross the saltwater croc infested Daintree river. Since we hadn’t seen any crocs in Kakadu NP we decided to take a tour with the rivertrain but we only spotted three small salties, all hidden under water. Wrong time of the year, apparently in winter they all come out of the water cos they need the sun to keep their body temperature near 28 degrees but now with the warm water they rather stay in the river.
For the night we decided to camp at Koala Resort at Cape Kimberley, a nice camp site close to the beach (again no swimming unfortunately due to the bloody stingers). We even saw a goanna the next day which decided to drink the water from the pool.
North of Cape Kimberley there are some really nice beaches such as Cow Bay and Thompsons Beach wherew e spent some time relaxing and drinking iced coffee.
The next two nights we stayed at PK’s djungle camp and did a day trip on the catamaran ‘Rumrunner’ to snorkel at Endine and Mackay reef. The latter was just awesome – shallow water and hundreds of different corals only an armlength below, many different colors (what size you want? same same! hehe). It almost looked like flying above a flower garden. And although the weather turned really bad it was a great day and worth every single dollar.
At PK’s we also ran into Lee and Leigh again – their coach had crashed into a motor cyclist (we actually had come across the accident on the way up!) and they had to wait for a replacement bus to bring them back to Cains.
Before returning south we drove along Bloomfield track (a 4WD track that leads all the way up north to Cape York) as far as Emmerson Creek which is only passable with a 4WD and went for a swim in the creek.
Cape Tribulation is definitely a very special experience, rainforest meets the sea, one world heritage (the Daintree forest) meets another (the Great Barrier Reef). The beaches are white and almost empty and apparently the reefs are in a much better condition than a few kilometres down near Cairns | See the pictures