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Cape York Peninsula is a large peninsula located in Far North Queensland, Australia. As one of the largest unspoiled wildernesses in northern Australia it is popular for those who want to experience all Australia has to offer and ideal for adventurous off-roaders. The land is mostly flat and about half of the area is used for grazing cattle, the rest is made up of amazing places to stop off and see the Daintree Rainforest, beautiful coastal beach retreats and stunning waterfalls to cool off in.
Starting off is Cairns most people stop off at Cape Tribulation, known for its scenic beaches and the world heritage listed Daintree National Park – where the forest meets the sea. There are two main walks – Dubuji Boardwalk (a 1.8 km boardwalk through the forest and mangroves) and Madja Botanical Walk (a boardwalk and pathway through the high value Daintree coastal rainforest). Madja is 10 minutes south of town while Dubuji is off the main street and exits onto Myall Beach.
From here you can head to the Bloomfield Track, very well-known 4WD driving groups. First of all, check the track is open ass it is made up of red soil rather than gravel which can be very slippery especially during wet season. The track is not suitable for campers and generally trailers are not recommended. Enjoy creek and river crossings and some steep climbs and descents. Take care with the dust as this will impair your vision, make sure you allow plenty of room if following another vehicle and don’t stop suddenly in the dust as the other drivers may not see you.
Heading towards Cooktown, it is worth a stop at Australian Famous Lion’s Den Pub – another classic Aussie icon long to the Mysterious Black Mountain. In Cooktown, there are a variety of activities from the Grassy Hill Lookout, The James Cook Museum, Botanical Gardens & Powerhouse Museum. Just 140 kilometres west of Cooktown near the township of Laura, explore one of Australia’s most significant archaeological sites, the Quinkan art galleries, world heritage collection of rock art, which is believed to be over 30,000 years old.
Crossing the Pascoe River, head to Iron Range National Park, see the spectacular Mount Tozer at the peak of the Table Range. Exploring the many wonders of the Iron Range National Park whilst enjoying the dense tropical rainforest being the largest remaining area of lowland rainforest in Australia.
Go on a road trip to Weipa, located in the Gulf of Carpentaria is the largest town in the Cape York Peninsula with a population of about 3,000 people. Its main industries are mining and cattle exports. visit the Western Cape Cultural Centre. Be impressed with the stunning and truly authentic aboriginal rock art sites and learn about the Aboriginal culture.
Chili Beach is well-known for its expansive shoreline and plentiful palm trees. Enjoy a top here to make the most of your trip.
In the middle of one of Australia’s most iconic 4WD tracks, the original Telegraph Tracks, are two of the Cape’s most scenic waterfalls: Twin Falls and Eliot Falls. Those traversing the Old Telegraph Track can take the short detour just before the Canal Creek crossing to enjoy these natural wonders, which are spring-fed and clear, making them perfect for a swim. Eliot Falls also has several walking tracks if you want to explore the area.
Visit Somerset, which was established by the Jardine Family as the Government outpost and Cattle Station. Enjoy the secluded beach and look out for some dugongs and sea turtles.
Eventually you will make your way to the tip of Australia, The Tip in Cape York. When you are on your way up, be sure to stock up on groceries in either Weipa, Seisia and Bamaga. Once you arrive, enjoy the 30-minute walk to the point, which has lots of great views. Take some time to enjoy the experience that not every has the luxury of experience.
Since you have made it this far why not take a boat cruise across the Torres Strait to Thursday Island and enjoy a guided tour around this small island that is part of Torres Strait culture and history. The island is situated between Cape York and Australia’s nearest neighbour New Guinea. You can take an island tour while here or pop over to Horn Island as well.
There is so much more to do and see in the Cape, time will be the biggest factor in what you can cover while there.
Although many people like to drive themselves, unless you have the right vehicle and are prepared to do all the planning yourself the easy option is to go on a 4WD tour. There are options for both staying at campsites or in accommodation as well as some cruise options.
This takes all the hard work out of the holiday for you and ensures that you learn so much about the local areas history and the people who live in Cape York. These tours also take you to the best locations in Cape, some are exclusive to tour groups.