Cairns Luxury Accommodation on the Barron River
Cairns luxury accommodation attracts holidaymakers in search of sunshine and warm weather on its its endless beaches. And of course the Great Barrier Reef hailed as a leading wonder of the world. North of Cairns, the Barron River supplies all the sand we need. In Cairns itself, we rely on fill from the river bed. We thought it would be interesting to take a journey down the river from where it rises in Lake Tinaroo high up in the mountains. And then follow it until it passes close by Wanggulay and enters the sea.
Tinaroo Lake Comfortably Nearby Cairns Luxury Accommodation
Lake Tinaroo collects the headwaters of the Barron River for purposes of irrigation, and then sends it on its way towards the Queensland coast. While it does not offer our standard of Cairns luxury accommodation, this is a great place for water sport. Because there are opportunities for swimming, water skiing, and sailing. And house boating too if you want to rough it on the water.
Rich Australian rain forest, natural bush, and pine plantations in a national park surround Tinaroo Lake. There are pleasant walks along the banks, and week-long hikes into the surrounding mountains. The waters teem with archer fish, barramundi, eel-tailed catfish, long tom, mouth almighty, sleepy cod, sooty grunter, and spangled perch. Not to mention red-claw and yabby crayfish. A short distance below the dam wall the water discharges down the Tinaroo cataracts. These do get hectic in rainy season so please be careful not to slip.
An Easy Going Route Takes Us Onward to Kuranda
After the Barron River levels out, it meanders across the Atherton Tableland with rich, volcanic soil well-suited for dairy farming. Much of the fresh produce in Cairns shops comes from this region. It covers an area of around 32,000 km2 lying at an altitude between 500 and 1,280 meters. And it enjoys an enviable reputation for banana, sugarcane, corn and maize, avocados, strawberries, macadamia nuts, and mangoes and citrus. The heritage town of Yungaburra is a great place for gentle river cruises, and also camping, canoeing, fishing, sailing, swimming, and water-skiing.
Some fifty kilometers further on we reach the village of Kuranda. This is close to the escarpment which drops sharply down to sea level, and our Cairns luxury accommodation some 25 kilometres away. Kuranda goes by the nickname of ‘Village of the Rain Forest’ and it certainly has a variety of natural attractions. Plus a good spread of restaurants too. You also have the benefit of shopping for souvenirs and gifts at lively market stalls. While kids discover the local wildlife at a butterfly sanctuary, a koala garden, or a world of birds.
Mighty Barron Falls en Route to Our Cairns Luxury Accommodation
From Kuranda, the land drops sharply down 125 meters of four precipitous cascades. Here you have a choice of following the road back to Wanggulay and Cairns, or using some unusual ‘public transport‘. But first, let’s linger for a moment and discover more surprises this enchanting river provides. It is normally placid, almost tempting. However when the lightening cracks, the thunder rolls, and the rain pelts down in the mountains, the Barron Falls becomes one of the most spectacular sights in Queensland.
Follow Barron Falls Road from Kuranda for 3 kilometres to reach a scenic viewing spot. There you could see all the way to Cairns on a good day. Follow the signs to the car park, then walk 2 kilometres to Wright’s lookout and the start of the Surprise Creek trail. The Din Din boardwalk, lookouts, and restrooms are wheelchair friendly with a helping hand. Do get to one or other viewing point, and be rewarded – if it has been raining heavily – with a sight perhaps as dramatic as this.
White Water Rafting on Near the Fringe of Cairns
The Barron River seems more alive after it drops down the cliff face from a small hydroelectric dam to a few hundred meters above sea level. It is if is senses the attractions, and looks forwards to brushing past our luxury accommodation after entering a mighty gorge. As the river ebbs and flows, the rocks turn to magnets for wild white water rafting. Between rapids, the boat drifts through calm waters offering time to reflect.
Gentler water sport is available on the Mulgrave River south of Cairns in the form of tube rides. The rapids are small, almost playful, and as always under control of qualified tour guides. For added excitement they found gold here in the 1870’s on the sand beneath the gently drifting water. That’s thought to be all taken. But you never know what is waiting around the next corner in life.
The Final Phases of the Barron River Journey
The Barron River follows small cataracts and delicious swimming ponds for a while. Then it enters the Barron Gorge deeply wedged between between the Macalister and Lamb mountain ranges. Here it gathers strength for its final plunge into the Coral Sea. While grey goshawk, wedge tailed eagles and other raptors wheel restlessly overhead in search of prey among the myriad of small mammals beneath.
And then finally, as with a sigh of relief, the Barron Gorge splits into two separate meandering rivers. The larger of the two heads directly to the ocean. The smaller stream brushes past our properties at Wanggulay, to the delight of guests reveling in clear water beneath tall trees. You have arrived. Your journey has ended. Our Cairns luxury accommodation at Wanggulay is nearby this lovely spot.
You Have Arrived on the Doorstep of Our Cairns Luxury Accommodation
From now on, the landscape levels as the Barron River widens out and threads its way though fertile, alluvial farmland. It has completed its journey that began in Lake Tinaroo high in the Atherton Tablelands. It has thundered down a mighty cataract, and entertained us with white water river rafting. Then it paused at Wanggulay briefly, so we could step outside at night and see it gleaming in the moonlight.
It has one more job to do before it brings rich sediment to our beaches, and the coral banks of the Great Barrier Reef beyond. This final task is to glisten in the sunlight, as a beacon for jet planes arriving in North Queensland with our valued travelers. We bid you welcome to Wanggulay, and to Cairns where the Barron River ends its journey, and flows out into the endless sea.