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Cooktown - Nature, Adventure and Discovery


Cooktown and the Cape York Peninsula are fringed by long deserted beaches which are ideal for a great day out by the sea.

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Bicentennial National Trail

The Bicentennial National Trail is the longest marked, non-motorised, self-reliant multi-use trekking route in the world, stretching an extraordinary 5,330 kilometres from Cooktown in tropical North Queensland, to Healesville in Victoria.

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Birdwatching in and near Cooktown

Birdwatching in and near Cooktown

Cooktown is an ideal place for bird watching, because there are four main geographical regions that meet here, each with its own set of special birds – Wet Tropics rainforest, Cape York Peninsula forests, coastal wetlands and mangroves, and the drier woodlands of the Laura and Battlecamp escarpments.

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Black Mountain National Park, (Kalkajaka N.P.)

Black Mountain National Park, (Kalkajaka N.P.)

The mysterious Black Mountains are steeped in myths and legends, and are a special story place for the Kuku Yalanji people.

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Cooktown Botanic Gardens

The Cooktown Botanic Gardens were established in 1878 making them one of Queensland's oldest regional botanic gardens. The Gardens are located within the 62 hectare Gallop Botanic Reserve, situated 1.5km from the centre of Cooktown.

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Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef

One of the seven wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef is an incredible living ecosystem. Vibrant colours, a myriad of fish species and crystal blue waters, refresh, invigorate and inspire.

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Hope Islands National Park

Hope Islands National Park

Two low lying coral cays, West Hope is a shingle cay dominated by mangroves and East Hope is a sandy cay.

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Lizard Island

Located 93 km north of Cooktown and 27km from the coast these 6 islands are part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Public moorings are provided for private boats and there is an airstrip for small aircraft.

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Mount Cook National Park

Mount Cook National Park

Rising to 431m Mount Cook provides a scenic backdrop to Cooktown. The rainforest clad granite hill is known as Waymbuur by the Aboriginal Traditional Owners.

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Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park

Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park

Rinyirru (Lakefield) is Queensland’s second largest National Park and the largest park in Cape York at 537,000 ha. Spectacular wetlands and extensive river systems attract a great diversity of waterbirds while estuarine and freshwater crocodiles bask along the river banks and barramundi wait in the shallows.

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Rossville Retreat Indigenous Tours

Rossville Retreat Indigenous Tours

Join local Kuku Nyungkul elder and traditional owner of the country around Rossville Retreat, Harold Tayley, well known as Mooks for an immersive Indigenous tour on country.

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The Great Tropical Drive Daintree Explorer Trail

This is a classic 4WD driving experience from Mossman to Cooktown including the renowned Bloomfield Track

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The Great Tropical Drive Discovery Trail

The Great Tropical Drive is a self-drive route that will take you from Cairns and Townsville to some amazing places in Tropical Australia. The Discovery Trail is a loop from Cooktown to Laura to Cooktown.

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There are several scenic waterfalls in the Cooktown vicinity which make lovely picnic and day trip destinations. Several offer safe swimming in idyllic swimming holes but always check the latest information from local sources before swimming.

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