Also referred to as the Cairns Highlands and Atherton Tablelands, this charming hinterland offers a variety of landscapes with its mosaic patterns of rainforest fragments, unique volcanic craters, lakes, lush forests, and mountains. The climate is much cooler on the Tablelands offering a haven where you can step from the heat of a tropical day into the cool, filtered light of the rainforest.
Kuranda is a busy tourist village and a popular day trip from Cairns. Kuranda has several parks for wildlife, birds, and butterflies. Barron Falls and the sheer gorge are a highlight for most visitors, especially when the river is in flood after heavy rain in the wet season. Popular walks around Kuranda Village and Barron Falls include the Douglas Track which links to the coast.
The Tablelands are accessible from the coast via four major highways: the Palmerston Highway near Innisfail; the Gillies Highway near Gordonvale; the Kennedy Highway which passes through Kuranda and Smithfield to the north of Cairns; and the Rex Range Road near Mossman.
The Kuranda Visitor Information Centre is an accredited member of the Queensland Information Centre Association. Located in Centenary Park at the top end of Condo Street, the Kuranda Visitor Information Centre acts as a gateway to the Atherton Tablelands/Cairns Highlands and has the second highest visitor numbers in the region.
With a wealth of local and regional knowledge, Kuranda volunteers will be able to help you plan your time in the village and book tours in the region.
Work by local artists is showcased in and around the building.
Open 7 days 10am to 4pm and closed on Christmas Day.
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The Atherton Information Centre is fully equipped with friendly staff and literature to help you plan your next holiday to the Atherton Tablelands and book accommodation, tours and car hire. They can provide general information on all aspects of tourism across the Tablelands. If you are holidaying with your pet dog or cat, they'll even be able to advise you on accommodation that accept pets.
The Atherton Information Centre is located on the corner of Main Street and Silo Road Open 7 days 9am to 5pm and closed Christmas Day and Good Friday.
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Malanda is a dairy town surrounded by lush rolling hills located on the Atherton Tablelands west of Cairns in the midst of the crater lakes and waterfalls region.
Nestled beneath the canopy of the towering rainforests, this is a great place to stop on your travels and discover more about this unique region of Tropical North Queensland, the wildlife, and the people who live here.
The Malanda Falls Visitor Centre was established in 1996 by a team of enthusiastic and passionate locals. Their dream was to provide a place to help visitors and school children understand and appreciate this unique rainforest environment.
In 2010, the Centre, all the original displays, and many irreplaceable artefacts were destroyed by fire.
After the fire, Tablelands Regional Council worked with the volunteers and the community to rebuild a modern Centre on the same site. Award winning architect, Charles Wright, chose the volcanic landscapes of the Atherton Tablelands and the Seven Sisters volcanic cones as inspiration for his contemporary design.
A Commonwealth Government Your Community Heritage grant was used to record and present special stories about the Atherton Tablelands. These stories are central to the interpretation in the new Visitor Centre, while Mupee, the Lumholtz’s Tree-kangaroo, is the unique and linking theme. The Centre was opened by the Mayor of Tablelands Regional Council Rosa Lee Long in September 2013.
Today, volunteers are still the heart and soul of the Malanda Falls Visitor Centre. As well as their time, volunteers donate an incredible wealth of knowledge to the Centre.
Ravenshoe Visitor Centre and Nganyaji Interpretive Centre
Ravenshoe is the highest town in Queensland and is well known as the home of Australia’s widest waterfall and the steam train ‘Capella’. The Visitor Centre displays the history and wildlife of the Wet Tropics world heritage area. The adjoining Nganyaji Interpretive Centre uncovers the rich culture of the Jirrbal rainforest people. The newest addition is the Ravenshoe Heritage Gallery, which illustrates the area’s history in photographs. It is the only visitor centre open 365 days of the year!
Situated on the edge of Australia's largest patch of rainforest, Ravenshoe is fast becoming recognised as a regional centre for ecotourism. Its expanding bed and breakfast industry is the perfect base for exploring the south/western Wet Tropics. The diverse mixture of high altitude rainforest and sclerophyll forests host the highest diversity of possum species (13) in Australia, including the rare yellow-bellied gliders. 340 bird species and 8 kangaroo species including Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo are also found within a 20km (12 mile) radius of the town.
The volunteer-run visitor centre features the Nganyaji Interpretive Centre displaying information and artefacts from the locally indigenous Jirrbal people. It also has displays on early settlers, the timber industry and soldiers who were based there during World War II.
Markets are held the fourth Sunday of each month at the nearby Railway Yards.
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