Far North Queensland was one of those places we considered NOT going to, when planning our 10 month Australian road trip. Did we want to drive all that way when what we really wanted to explore was the Daintree Rainforest and snorkel at the Great Barrier Reef?
We decided flying would be a better option because when it came down to it, we knew we wanted to go. It was one of those things on our Living List. AND we knew it would be a once in a lifetime opportunity for us.
The Great Barrier Reef is suffering and part of our own personal conundrum was: Did we want to contribute to its demise?
What we discovered, by taking an eco-tour to the outer reef with marine biologists as our guides, was that tourism was only a small part of the larger issue. The larger issue was mining and global warming. Yes, we contributed to global warming as human beings, but the number of people going out to the reef was not really a large part the issue.
Since this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, we spent 9 days in Far North Queensland. We discovered freshwater swimming holes, our personal saviour for the oppressive equatorial heat. We discovered just how stunning the Daintree Forest was and how well its being preserved. We found that Cairns is just a big country town, where Port Douglas, despite being a major tourist destination, is Cairns’ much smaller brother.
We concluded that we liked this part of Queensland. There were truly some breathtaking areas. We loved snorkelling the Barrier Reef and we encourage you, if you do decide to visit, to go with an eco-certified company for your tour. (We recommend Wavelength out of Port Douglas. And no, we weren’t paid for any part of our snorkelling trip. We just liked what they were about.)
Would we live in Queensland? Hell no. It’s too damn hot and Queenslanders drive like crazy people. =)
Note: All photos are copyright to Tara Marlow @ Travel Far Enough