After all the dust and corrugations of the trip to the Cape, we were very happy to be driving on the black top again. Our next destinations were Cooktown and then to the Daintree Rainforest, a place we had both been looking forward to spending some time.
Cooktown is a delightful small town where there is little to do but fish and explore the nearby coastline. It was a great location to wind down from the excitement of the last few weeks and clean out some of the dust and dirt from the van and the cruiser. A nice treat was the seafood van that came to visit the caravan park. His fish was delicious and his oysters were the best I've ever eaten. They were huge, juicy and sweet. Absolutely perfect.
The sunsets are just magnificent here in Cooktown. Something you never get tired of seeing.
From Cooktown, there are 2 options to get to the Daintree. You can take the Bloomfield road which is very steep and rough in places and completely unsuitable for caravans, or you can take the long way through Mount Molloy and Mossman. We chose the easier way.
The Daintree is a part of the largest continuous area of tropical rainforest on continental Australia and is the oldest continually surviving tropical rainforest in the world. It is home to a fantastic diversity of wildlife, spectacular scenery and a warm, humid climate. Sir David Attenborough described it as his favourite place in the world...!
Most of the Daintree is either National or State parkland but there are pockets of privately owned land. We were very fortunate to find the dog friendly Daintree Rainforest Village caravan park. The camp-grounds are spacious with both powered and non powered sites available. The amenities were old but very clean. The park managers had been there just on 12 months and it was obvious they had put in a lot of work to improve the facilities.
The vast array of activities available to visitors to the Daintree area is incredible. We took the opportunity to do as many as we could. The zip line rides were a real thrill and I really have to give Kylie credit here as she has a pretty intense fear of heights. To be able to hang upside down 100 feet above the forest canopy was very brave of her indeed.
We also enjoyed a horse ride through the rainforest and up along the beach. This was a fantastic way to see the rainforest at ground level and the experience of riding a horse along the beach is a memory we will cherish for a long time. We even got to glimpse a Cassowary and her chicks as well as a sleeping crocodile along the ride.
Cape Tribulation is the jewel in the crown of the Daintree area. Its a magnificent beach and strolling along the walking trails through the surrounding bushland and mangroves is an easy way to spend a day. The cameras certainly got a workout here.
What really surprised us the most about the Daintree were some of the small boutique restaurants and cafe's scattered throughout the area. One of our favourites was WHET cafe' bar and restaurant. The food here was as good as anything you'd get in Melbourne. We enjoyed it so much we went twice...!
When it came time to move on, we were both a bit sad to say goodbye to this beautiful and unique part of the country. The Daintree is a caravanning destination that doesn't disappoint. We will definitely be back here again in the future.