Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Day 1 - Thursday, July 28
Arrival in Cairns. This afternoon you will have an orientation and review of your itinerary before heading to a reef presentation.

Day 2 - Friday, July 29
After breakfast, depart for the Great Barrier Reef. The day will be spent snorkeling and scuba diving at two different reef locations.

After your evening return to Cairns, enjoy dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 3 - Saturday, July 30
After breakfast you will meet your guide who will teach you about the rainforest and aboriginal culture over the next two day, beginning with a rainforest walk. The Kuku Yalanji are the only tribal rainforest people in Australia who still have their own culture and language, and this morning you are welcomed by an aboriginal guide for a 1.5 hour walk in the rainforest.

Afterwards you will move on to Mossman Gorge. You will continue north after lunch, crossing the Daintree River by ferry and stopping at lookouts.

After checking into your lodge, dinner will be served at a local restaurant.

Day 4 - Sunday, July 31
After breakfast you will travel approximately two hours to Port Douglas to visit The Wildlife Habitat, a park and refuge for Australian animals such as crocodiles, kangaroos, koalas, and countless exotic birds. If you would like a photo with a koala, here's your chance!

After lunch, move on to hunting and tracking with brothers Linc and Brandon of the Kuku Yalanji aboriginal community: you will learn how to properly throw spears, hunt for mussels, periwinkles, and other delicacies in the mangroves, and catch crabs and other seafood in the traditional way. Afterwards, go to the family home for the dinner you caught. In the process, you will learn more about aboriginal culture.

In the evening you will depart Cooya Beach and return to Cairns in time for dinner at a nearby restaurant.

Day 5 - Monday, August 1
After breakfast you will ascend the Great Dividing Range for an exploration of the Cairns Highlands.

You will visit:
Granite Gorge: where a boulder-filled canyon offers limitless opportunities to explore, and rock wallabies come out to play.
Lake Eacham and Lake Barrine: ancient volcanic craters - or maar - now in a national park. Walking tracks around these lakes take you through higher altitude rainforest.
Massive fig trees: giants that eerily "strangle" their hosts surrounded by a rare type of mabi rainforest.
Mt. Hypipamee National Park: tonight after dinner you explore a rare type of volcanic pipe - aka "the Crater" - and an abundance of nocturnal wildlife typically found here.

This afternoon you will check into your treehouse bungalow.

Day 6 - Tuesday, August 2
After breakfast you will travel to Woodleigh Station. Woodleigh is a real working cattle station. Upon arrival you will be taken on a short tour around the property to discover the homestead that was esablished more than a century ago when pioneers first arrived in this area of Australia. This will be followed by an authentic Aussie "barbie".

This afternoon you will continue your exploration of the tablelands before returning for the bungalows and dinner.

Day 7 - Wednesday, August 3
After breakfast you will continue your exploration of the highlands, including a walk in the high-altitude rainforest around Lake Eacham, the giant fig trees, and platypus spotting. Later depart for the Waterfalls Circuit.

Millaa Millaa Falls are the icon of northern Queensland, and perhaps the most photographed images in the Wet Tropics. There is a fantastic swimming hole at the base of the falls, and you can scramble on the peculiar columnar basalt behind the falls to. The less-visited Elinjaa Falls and Zillie Falls are further on the circuit.

Later, travel into Wooroonooran National Park - one of the most diverse places in the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area and host to some of the oldest continually surviving rainforest in the world. You can take an easy walk through the jungle to where Josephine Creek plunges down a gorgeous set of cascades.

After returning to Cairns, dinner will be on your own.

Day 8 - Thursday, August 4
Free day.

Day 9 - Friday, August 5
You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home.

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