QUEENSLAND27Wrotham Park LodgeTyrconnell, DimbulahAtop a seared hilltop covered with bloodwood treesand stumpy termite mounds is this once operationalgold mine, just under two hours from Atherton.Andrew and Cate, the owners, renovated the mineand the result is three rustic cottages, 'Top','Ruby'and the larger 'Managers', all with rug-strewnpolished floors, comfortable sitting rooms, ensuitebedrooms and each wrapped in shady verandascommanding magnificent views towards MountMulligan. Meals are taken either in the homestead,a family affair, or by candlelight in the atmosphericsurroundings of the old stamper battery. There areplenty of things to occupy your days here; goldpanning down at the creek, birdwatching walks tothe Mareeba Wetlands or visiting George, one of thelocal Kuku Djundan Aboriginal people, for adidgeridoo lesson. The textures of the landscape arefantastic and the rust-covered buckets with rivetedpatches and corrugated iron buildings set the sceneperfectly, making the mine a living piece of the past.discover thetropical northtailor-made travelAll our travel arrangements are on a private,individual basis to offer you complete freedom ofchoice. The itineraries and accommodation optionsthroughout the brochure are designed to give you aflavour of what is possible and can be tailor-made tosuit your preferences. Prices vary according toselected accommodation and season. Please callour Australia specialists on 01869 276 345 todiscuss your individual requirements.WROTHAM PARK STATIONLocated on the Cape York Peninsula, thisworking cattle station is immense and craggy,and offers a wonderful opportunity to see aworking station in action. The station landcovers three major river systems, with the Lynd,Mitchell and Walsh rivers running through theproperty, and the area is blessed with anabundance of bird species, mobs of kangaroo aswell as some of Australia's more unrulyresidents, the freshwater crocodile and thedingo. The station is reached by air from Cairns,by a guided 4WD tour or, if you're feeling bold,by hiring a 4WD vehicle and driving yourself.Wrotham Park LodgeThis Outback lodge is part of the working station andsits high above the banks of the Mitchell River. Thelandscape, rugged and beautiful, is characterised bythe classic big blue sky and the red earth of theOutback. A host of activities such as canoeing,walking trails and tours of the station occupy yourday, whilst the evenings are communal dinner partystyle with meals a gourmet interpretation oftraditional 'Aussie' country fare. The handful ofguestrooms, 'Quarters', are based on the historicstockman quarters mixed with modern comforts: acomfy leather armchair and a shady veranda with aday bed. The lodge brings together wilderness, therich heritage of Australia's rural history and classicOutback cattle station life with a hint of luxury.Tyrconnell CottageTyrconnellTABLELANDS & OUTBACK North Queensland's vast contrasts come into vivid,human focus on this journey. Your Outback home isa stylish cottage set in a converted gold mine, whileyour rainforest experience is transformed by yourpole-framed tree-house hidden within the trees.Day 1:Depart from Cairns and head outthrough the rainforest to the ruggedOutback Tyrconnell Mine. Day 2:Full day at leisure to explore the goldfieldand meet the locals characters.Day 3:Leave Tyrconnell today for the temperaterainforests of the Atherton Tablelandsand your tree-house within the forest.Day 4:Spend the day exploring the Tablelandsand the famous waterfall circuit.Day 5:Spend the morning relaxing beforedriving back to Cairns.COLOURS OF QUEENSLANDThis indulgent adventure brings the classic images ofQueensland to life: the sun-bronzed red of theOutback, a remote island resting on the colouredcoral of the Great Barrier Reef and the tranquility ofthe Daintree's lush tropical rainforest.Day 1:Fly from Cairns to Wrotham Park Station.Day 2:Exploring the working station whichcovers over half a million hectares ofland. In the evening, a star-gazing talkintroduces the different constellations ofthe southern sky. Day 3:Fly to Cow Bay and on to Silky OaksLodge on the edge of the Daintree.Day 4:Relax at the lodge, maybe picnic by theriver or explore by canoe.Day 5:Fly to Lizard Island and take to the beachwith a mask and snorkel to soak up thebeauty of the Great Barrier Reef.Day 6:Snorkel or dive at the 'Cod Hole', findclams more than a 100 years old, or relaxon a deserted powder-white beach. Day 7:Fly from Lizard Island to Cairns.
Honeyeater, Daintree RainforestDAINTREE RAINFOREST& CAPE TRIBULATIONThis dense precious rainforest sports a millionshades of green, outlandish fungi shining in thedark and a chorus of curious sounds. Anenvironmental jewel that dates back 100 millionyears, making it the world's oldest, it reachesfrom Mossman through Cape Tribulation toCooktown and plays host to a bewilderingvariety of plant, animal, insect, bird and reptilelife. Across the Daintree River the dense forestoverhangs the twisting road that leads to CapeTribulation, named by Captain Cook in ruefulacknowledgement of the trouble he experiencednavigating the Great Barrier Reef. Breathtakinglybeautiful with rugged mountain ranges andrainforest that tumbles down to the beach,there are endless ways to explore: kayak gentlyalong the shoreline, rise high into the canopy ona crane giving an amazing perspective or takean interpretative walk accompanied by theguides who are only too happy to share theirpassion for the area. Crocodile spotting in theDaintree River is fascinating, especially at night,when the forest's nocturnal residents come intotheir own. The Daintree Rainforest heaves withlife: butterflies flit through the trees, tropicalbirds squawk frantically and the ancient treescreak. Amazingly, it is all so accessible fromCairns, reached in less than a two hour drive.28Silky Oaks LodgeSilky Oaks Lodge,MossmanThis lovely lodge overlooks the Mossman River and isan idyllic and luxurious base from which to explore.There is no sense of 'roughing it' as your home is in abeautiful timber Treehouse either overlooking theriver or within the rainforest. With an understatedtropical style of natural tones and timbers whichcreate a relaxed environment, huge glass doorsopen onto wide verandas where a hammock isperfectly positioned to make the most of the views. Daintree Wilderness LodgeCockatoo Hill RetreatGreen tree frogCockatoo Hill Retreat,Cape TribulationSet against the hulking green backdrop of MountThornton, this retreat's position is truly breathtaking:high on a rainforest ridge projecting you into therainforest itself with wrap-around views. Immersed ina garden of palms, bougainvillea and frangipani arefour shaggily-thatched bungalows providing coolenclaves of white walls and gleaming timber floors.Each king-sized bed has a mosquito net, and privatebalconies provide wonderful treetop views over thehillsides. The main lodge is crafted from localtimbers and serves as a dining room and lounge.The swimming pool is cradled in forest and has viewsover the Coral Sea and your hosts, Carmen andGilles, are friendly and welcoming.Daintree Wilderness Lodge,Cape TribulationThis natural hideaway offers tranquility in the heartof the rainforest. Each of the seven simple yetcomfortable guest bungalows offer privacy and arelinked to the main lodge by a series of boardwalks. Aswimming pool shaded by beautiful fan palms is awelcome finale after a day spent exploring the forestand the casual dining room specialises in localseafood and platters of colourful tropical fruit. Thelodge offers guided rainforest night tours or if youjust wish to take things at a more leisurely pace,then the beach at Cow Bay is a short drive away.The lodge supports a small community ofcassowaries, and your hosts, Kerry and Peter, arepart of a care group working towards protecting thehabitat of this vibrant and rare flightless bird.