The Great Tropical Drive - a stunning Australia motorhome holiday
The Great Tropical Drive is a self-drive touring route that winds its way from palm-fringed beaches, to ancient rainforests and the golden outback of North Queensland. It will take you from Cairns and Townsville to some amazing places in Tropical Australia - less than a few hours away. Follow the Great Tropical Drive and 13 discovery trails to some of Australia’s best known attractions - the Great Barrier Reef, Daintree Rainforest, Hinchinbrook Island and Undara Lava Tubes - and be prepared for many unexpected discoveries along the way. The Great Tropical Drive passes through six unique regions of North Queensland: Cooktown, Port Douglas and Daintree, Cairns and Beaches, Mission Beach and the Cassowary Coast, Tropical Tablelands and Savannah Country, Townsville, Charters Towers & Hinchinbrook Start and Finish – Cairns State visited : Queensland
Great Barrier Reef
Undara Volcanic Park
The Great Tropical Drive Motorhome Holiday includes:
- 1 night accommodation in Cairns
- Great Barrier Reef Cruise
- 14 days your choice of motorhome, campervan or 4WD vehicle
Day 1 - Cairns
Arrive in Cairns, Check into your chosen hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure.
Day 2 - Cairns - Port Douglas
Pick up your selected motorhome. Meander along the golden chain of beaches stretching north from Cairns. Walk along the white sands of Four Mile Beach and climb Flagstaff Hill for striking views over Port Douglas.
Euro Camper Motorhome
Day 3 - Port Douglas & the Great Barrier Reef
Enjoy a day cruise to the great barrier reef from Port Douglas.
Day 4 - Port Douglas - Cooktown
Travel through Mossman to magical Mossman Gorge in Daintree National Park ,then head north to the World Heritage-listed Daintree rainforest. Pass the craggy form of Black Mountain and spy on thousands of noisy waterbirds in Keating's Lagoon. Arrive in Cooktown where you overnight.
Day 5 - Cooktown - Mareeba
Browse the historic sites in Cooktown, Australia's first European settlement and site of a wild 19th century gold rush. Climb to the top of Grassy Hill for a good view of the reefs where Captain Cook's boat struck trouble in 1770. Continue south to Mareeba, amidst the orchards, coffee plantations, wineries and sugar cane fields of the Tropical Tablelands.
Day 6 - Mareeba - Ravenshoe
Spot water birds in Mareeba Wetlands, just out of town. Further east, see Aboriginal rock art galleries in Davies Creek National Park or swim beneath Emerald Creek Falls. Marvel at the deep Mount Hypipamee crater on the way to Ravenshoe, Queensland's highest town.
Day 7 - Ravenshoe - Undara Volcanic National Park
Have a beer in Queensland's highest pub or check out the huge wind farm. Follow the Tully Falls Road south to see Tully Falls tumble almost 300m over rainforest and glistening rock. Wind through the vine thickets and giant fig trees, past Australian brush-turkeys and red-legged pademelons. Drive west to Undara Volcanic National Park, home to the remnants of the world's longest lava flow from a single volcano. Walk around Kalkani Crater, along the path of pioneers to Rosella Plains or to Atkinsons lookout. Gaze out over the lava plains and explore once-volcanic caves that are now fertile rainforest pockets.
Day 8 - Undara Volcanic National park – Charters Towers
Drive along the Kennedy Highway to The Lynd. Then drive to Lynd Junction, where you can meet one of the three people who live there in the Oasis Roadhouse, reputedly Queensland's smallest bar. Head into Charter Towers, where the heritage streetscapes hark back to the golden boom days of the 1800s. Follow the Ghosts of Gold Heritage Trail and visit attractions such as Zara Clark Museum, the Civic Club and the World Theatre.
Day 9 - Charters Towers - Townsville
Follow the Flinders Highway east, stopping to see waders and other waterbirds at the Mingela Wetlands. Before Townsville, detour into Bowling Green Bay National Park, home to rugged mountains, wetlands, saltpans and mangrove forests. In Townsville, wander the scenic beach promenade of The Strand and visit the world's largest living coral reef aquarium. Dine alfresco on fresh local seafood on Palmers Street and explore the balmy nightlife on Flinders Street East.
Day 10 - Townsville - Ingham
Head north along the Great Green Way, stopping to hike through the rich rainforest of Paluma Range National Park. Swim at Big or Little Crystal Creek, where a historic stone art bridge arches over the water. Walk to McClellands Lookout for dizzying views over the islands and coastline. Drive into Ingham, a sugar cane town with a distinctly Mediterranean flair thanks to the Italians Spaniards, and Basques who migrated here.
Day 11 - Ingham - Cardwell
Drive west to visit Wallaman Falls, Australia's highest single drop waterfall. Follow the Banggurru walk along the banks of Stony Creek or do the short Jinda walk into the gorge for a closer view. Overnight in Cardwell
Day 12 - Cardwell - Mission Beach
Explore Cardwell's historic buildings and modern marina before heading north through Kennedy. Detour east off the highway to Edmund Kennedy National Park for a beach picnic or west to breathtaking Murray Falls. Head to Tully or the vibrant village of Mission Beach for the night.
Day 13 - Mission Beach - Innisfall
You can't miss Tully's Giant Golden Gumboot, an 8m high trophy to match its title of Australia's wettest town. From the viewing platform you can look over the town and Tully Sugar Mill. Wind through lowland rainforest and over delicate creeks on the Lacey Creek Walking Trails around town. Drive into the bustling sugar town of Innisfail for the night.
Day 14 - Innisfall - Cairns
Wander past Innisfail's elegant art deco buildings, visit the Chinese temple and sugar museum. Then drive north to Eubenangee Swamp National Park, where rare plants and native wildlife flourish in the wetlands. Peer at birds, butterflies, turtles and crocodiles as you wind along the edge of Alice River. Pass through Edmonton on your way back into Cairns.
Day 15 - Cairns
Today return your motorhome in Cairns where this itinerary concludes.
Mantra Esplanade, Cairns Holidays
With its prime waterfront location, Mantra Esplanade offers stylish and contemporary accommodation in the heart of the holiday hub of Cairns.
Great Barrier Reef
4 mile beach
One of the fantastic beaches
Great Barrier Reef
Yacht anchored offshore
Cairns at night
Australia is on the other side of the world, making it really easy to include stopovers as part of your perfect itinerary. Stopover experiences can enhance or contrast with your Australian journey, so if you are looking to see the delights of Dubai, the shops of Singapore, the bustle of Bangkok, the neon of New York or the cuisine of Capetown, just let us know...
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