Australia: Great Barrier Reef and Rainforest
Cairns, Australia is blessed with a superb location between lush rainforest, classic outback and the Great Barrier Reef. On this active adventure you’ll sample two UNESCO World Heritage areas and some of the oldest rainforest on the planet. With an emphasis on viewing wildlife, this journey will also give you a glimpse of near-extinct finches, kangaroos from the basket of a hot air balloon, and a rainbow of reef fish, turtles, giant clams and coral gardens. Combined with aboriginal culture, unique eco-lodges, and an expert guide, this adventure captures the essence of wild Australia.
- Hiking and wildlife viewing in UNESCO World Heritage Daintree and Wooroonooran National Parks and Mareeba Wetlands Reserve
- Live aboard sailing to the outer Great Barrier Reef for snorkeling and optional scuba diving, and a pre-trip marine biologist presentation
- Exploring the rainforest with an aboriginal elder to learn about traditions and customs of indigenous Australians
- Swimming beneath waterfalls, meeting local cowboys on an outback cattle station, and taking a sunrise hot air balloon flight
Our guides introduce you to people and places you’d never find on your own ╴the owners of a private pioneer homestead, members of the Kuku Yalanji aboriginal tribe, a 100 year old traditional Aussie pub, and the best location to spot a duck-billed platypus in the wild.
We use locally owned villas, eco-lodges, and hotels that are not cookie-cutter rooms. These places have beauty and style, a superb view or an ideal location in the rainforest, city center, or on the beach.
Best Time to Go:
The “dry season” runs from approximately April to October, meaning cooler days and little rainfall. The “wet season” from November to March means hotter days, plenty of green, and waterfalls.
- This trip is carbon neutral
- A tree is planted in each guest’s name
- Locally owned accommodations and restaurants
- Australian naturalist guide and driver
- Donations to conservation and community organizations at the destination
- Small group size to minimize environmental impact
- Pre- and post-departure education on sustainability/ conservation efforts in Cairns