The Daintree Rainforest

We have been fortunate in our travels over the years to visit some wonderful places. Many have been UNESCO World Heritage sites i.e Dubrovnik, the Segrada Familia in Barcelona, the rainforest on La Gomera in the Canary Islands and the magnificent Shark Bay in Western Australia but right here is a unique place in the world as it’s the only place where two world heritage sites join each other. They are the Daintree Rainforest and The Great Barrier Reef.

At the end of our long detour we overnighted in Daintree Village, a lovely spot overlooking the Daintree River. We booked one of the many river cruises and as well as having much of the flora and fauna explained we hoped to see crocodiles and we did spot one about eight foot long basking in the mangroves. Apparently it’s a small one for this area. The following day we took the chain ferry across the Daintree River to the Daintree National Park. With an expensive ferry at one end and the Bloomfield Track at the other end it does help to limit tourism which is important for such a delicate area. In fact the government are thinking of closing it in stages over the years to protect it.

The Daintree Rainforest is an ancient and fragile eco system once threatened by logging. It’s one of the few places in the world where rainforest meets sea. Just a small ribbon of road takes you through the rainforest. There are two boardwalks that take you deep inside and both are excellent. There are many beautiful beaches, the best of them being Cape Tribulation.

To finish off the Captain Cook theme, it was actually just off here where the Endeavour hit the reef and the crew spent 2 days manning the pumps and throwing things overboard in a desperate fight to save their lives. It’s a survival story up there with the best of them, Shackleton and all.

The next day we slowly made our way back to the ferry but first took an early morning swim in one of the lovely natural swimming holes. We then visited the Daintree Icecream Company advertised as the most scenic icecream company in the world and we wouldn’t dispute this. They grow all their own tropical fruit which they use to flavour the icecream. Some of the fruits they grow are mangosteen, sapodilla, black sapote (also known as the chocolate pudding fruit), jackfruit (tastes like banana and bubblegum) and durian. We then stopped down the road and bought some tea from a tea plantation and finished the day off by dining at Mojos internationally acclaimed restaurant in Mossman. Well, you can’t slum it all the time!!

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