Historic railway travel and terror in the parking lot

Heading North for winter - 5

Kuranda and Cairns

We made our way through the now familiar flowering cane fields that now in full bloom seemed cloud like. An image that seemed  fitting as we arrived at the Sky rail and glided above the rainforest like a bird. There was only a slight moment of terror in B’s eye’s when the sky rail stopped midair for quite a few minutes, but the  stunned mullet look on his face eased as we moved on. However, there were some major delays and we spent a lot of time in queues when we got there, and when we changed carriages at the breakpoints in the ride.

Kuranda Street View

The climax of the grand ride was Kuranda, a small town full of large root dangling trees and air plants, metal sculpted features of wildlife and decorative pathways. But it was not much of a historical town, more a decorative shopping strip. Hence it was a little hard to keep the kids entertained while waiting for the only train back down 3hrs later. That is unless you spend even more money to go to the Butterfly house or venom house.

Kuranda Scenic Rail, train details

Wooden paneling, pressed iron roof detail and comfy high-back bench seats, that’s us traveling in historic style back down the mountainside. But of cause as with history, the kids are still fighting for the window seat.

Waterfall along the train track

The track snuggled close to the mountain side allowing vast valley views and visions of Cairns all the way to the ocean. We passed through six hand dug tunnels and viewed two grand waterfalls, one of which you could almost feel the spray.

With an early start the next day to Fitzroy Island we chose to stay in the car park as close to the wharf as we could(the luxury of a self-contained caravan…perhaps not). Reasonably uneventful you would think hey, but the bone-shuddering scream that greeted us as the sun was nudging below the road was something else. With Bulging eyes and elegant legs, they almost circled us. We’ve heard and experienced the old wives tale about someone we know about to die on hearing the Curlew’s call at night….I didn’t sleep so well that night and neither did LR

To view more photography please visit the Visual Images Website



(11am) Skyrail Station at Smithfield – Cairns Western Arterial rd X Captain Cook Hwy https://www.skyrail.com.au/

Kuranda in a Day – Self Drive:  This tour offers flexibility in the afternoon.  Spend as much or little time in Kuranda as you wish.  In the morning drive your car the Skyrail Station at Smithfield, a 20 minute drive North of Cairns city.  Park here for the day at no charge. http://www.ksr.com.au/



Cnr of Lily st and Esplanade

Camp along street discreetly?


NEXT: Forget about the crocks, what about the sharks

Leave a comment