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C H A N G E Y O U R L A T I T U D E TM The theatrical approach The multi-award Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park close to Cairns and owned by the Tjapukai people showcases the culture of the rainforest people of Tropical North Queensland with a spectacular theatrical interpretation of Aboriginal heritage. There is also an interactive Camp Village, where visitors can learn didgeridoo playing and boomerang throwing. Walking with the owners Djabugay Country Tours are based in the rainforest village of Kuranda, within easy reach of Cairns and is designed for those visitors wanting a unique and special experience. The company is community owned with profi ts going back to the community. Here’s a tip: take the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway to Kuranda, with its stunning views over North Queensland’s magnifi cent scenery. Beach, mudflats and mangroves Tag along with Kuku Yalanji Cultural Habitat Tours in Port Douglas to explore the region’s magnifi cent beach, the mudfl ats, and the mangroves. Learn how to throw a spear, track wildlife, and use coastal resources as Linc and Brandon Walker follow the traditions of their ancestors and educate visitors about their rich Kuku Yalanji culture. Dreamtime at Mossman Head north from Port Douglas and join one of the Kuku Yalanji Dreamtime Walks at majestic Mossman Gorge. The main 90-minute walk takes you through the Daintree Rainforest with a unique traditional interpretation of ancient Kuku Yalanji culture. The Bloomfield experience Cross the Daintree River north of Port Douglas and past Cape Tribulation to Wujal Wujal, home of Walker Family Tours. This is an opportunity to see Bloomfi eld Falls through the eyes of its traditional custodians, and to learn about the cultural signifi cance of this very special place. Inclusive packages from Cairns and Port Douglas are available. See the Rainbow Serpent Guurrbi Tours operate from Cooktown with Aboriginal Elder, Willie Gordon – and is listed as one of Australia’s ‘Ultimate Must-Do Experiences’. Willie’s Rainbow Serpent Tour takes you through a dramatic landscape to six magnifi cent rock art sites. A remote cultural cruise The more adventurous visitor might want to venture to the top of the Cape York Peninsula and cruise the region aboard the MV Pikkuw with Aurukun Fishing The last of Australia’s regions to be explored, settled or developed until a little over 100 years ago, Tropical North Queensland is home to Australia’s highest proportion of Indigenous Australians – offering a wonderful opportunity to explore a great diversity of ancient cultures. 24 w w w . S E L L I N G D O W N U N D E R . c o m J u l y 2 0 0 7

TOURISM TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND Tourism Tropical North Queensland is the region’s official Destination Marketing Organisation and offers a variety of services for both consumers and trade. For more information about the Cairns & Great Barrier Reef region visit Tourism Tropical North Queensland at www.tropicalaustralia.com or email marketing@tnq.org.au. & Wetland Charters. It’s a unique way to explore an untouched natural world, with interpretation and insight from the Wik and Wik Way people. Save the turtles Cape York Turtle Rescue is all about the Indigenous people of Cape York working to save the dwindling turtle population of the Western Cape. The campsite at Janie Creek, about 80 kilometres north of Weipa, offers accommodation in quality tent-cabins on raised platforms with modern bush camping facilities. A chance to work alongside local Aboriginal Rangers and Wildlife Offi cers as they tag and measure nesting turtles. A royal connection South of Cairns, the Great Green Way Eco Tours are guided by Aboriginal botanist, Warren Whitfi eld, the direct descendant of King Bungaree (King of Sydney, the fi rst individual person to be called an Australian and the fi rst Aboriginal person to be made King). The educational tours from Cairns look at all aspects of ecology and how the local vegetation has evolved. The Great Green Way Eco Tours gives you a good general overview of Aboriginal culture including fi re management, bush foods, and plants used for medicines. Situated south west of Tully, the newly-established Echo Adventure & Cultural Experience Cultural Centre offers a guided walk through virgin rainforest to Echo Creek Falls with local Aboriginal people. Off to the islands More than 200 islands make up the Torres Strait Islands, each with a distinct culture and, in some circumstances, even language. The different islands also have their own unique dances showcasing magnifi cent feather head-dresses and traditional costumes. Add to this the inspiring coral cays, uninhabited reefs and crystal clear waters, and you have the ingredients for an unforgettable adventure. QantasLink fl ies from Cairns to Horn Island, with charter fl ights available on to Poruma, Yorke (Masig) and Warraber islands. www.aurukunwetlandcharters.com www.bamaway.com.au www.djabugaytours.com.au www.echoadventure.com.au www.fi resticktours.com.au www.tjapukai.com.au www.yalanji.com.au J u l y 2 0 0 7 w w w . S E L L I N G D O W N U N D E R . c o m 25