Cairns to Normanton – Gateways
Cairns and Tropical North Queensland
The east coast of Queensland features the cruising and island experiences of the Great Barrier Reef, lush sugar cane fields and the Wet Tropics World Heritage Rainforest. The Great Green Way from Townsville to Cairns has some great highlights.
Cairns is a popular tourism centre with all visitor facilities. This thriving regional centre offers arts, culture, shopping and dining. There’s many different day tour options, including trips to the Great Barrier Reef and its islands. The Great Inland Way from Sydney is a fully sealed route offering a range of highlights.
The Atherton Tablelands provide Cairns’ green backdrop, with mixed agriculture and upland rainforest. This is another place where you can easily plan to spend a few days, exploring the lush green surrounds. As well as crater lakes and waterfalls, the Tablelands has rich World Heritage listed rainforest, coffee plantations and friendly locals.
The Gregory Development Road from Charters Towers is sealed and tracks the mighty Burdekin River, one of the east coast’s largest catchments.
The Matilda Highway is a popular route for caravans, with regular facilities and many attractions along the way. The Burke and Wills Roadhouse is a crossroads for those considering loops to Gregory Downs and Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park.
Tourism Tropical Tablelands
The official website of Tropical Tablelands Tourism – the region’s local tourism organisation – has everything you need to know about touring on the Atherton Tablelands or the Cairns Highlands. Our visitors’ information website includes a selection of accommodation, tours, attractions, restaurants, events, markets and things to see and do. Research, plan and book your Atherton Tablelands and Cairns Highlands holiday and tours here. There’s an entire holiday waiting for you here on the Tablelands – if someone tells you it is possible to see the Tablelands in a day, chances are they aren’t from here! People ask ‘what is the best thing about the region?’ Well, there’s more than one! Firstly, the gourmet food and wine trails that criss-cross our ‘food bowl of the tropics’. Secondly, our wildlife with a particular emphasis on bird watching and unique marsupials like the tree kangaroo. Thirdly, the waterfall circuits with their stunning rainforest backdrops and hidden gems. Finally, there’s the region’s natural wonders such as the Curtain Fig Tree, Lake Tinaroo, Mt Hypipamee Crater, Undara Lava Tubes, Broomfield Swamp, Paronella Park and the twin crater lakes of Barrine and Eacham just to name a few! Venture out, and discover how wonderful it is to stay at cosy B&Bs, timber treehouses, inviting inns, holiday parks and eco-lodges. Visit www.athertontablelands.com.au for more information.