For the past 2 weeks, It’s been constant torrential rain so today was the first day with beautiful sunshine and 35-degree heat so we decided to make the most of it. First stop Crystal Cascades just a 20-minute drive from where we’re staying in Cairns. We arrive to a pretty much empty car park which is awesome meaning we practically get the place to ourselves, unfortunately, that wasn’t the reason, I’ll why explain later. It’s just a 1.2km walk to the main waterfall and along the way there are numerous smaller water holes that you can swim in. We decided to head for the big one first and work our way down. We soon realised the reason the car park was empty, It was because there was a fallen tree across the path and the main waterfall had been closed off to the public which was disappointing. But we didn’t let this stop us we spent about an hour swimming in the smaller swimming areas before we got bored and decided to go elsewhere. So we headed towards Port Douglas.
After an hours drive and a minor detour to Hungry Jacks, we arrived at Port Douglas. We drove straight to the town and did a quick drive around. We’re backpackers so if we had of got out the car we would have spent the little money we had, we thought it was safer on our pockets if we just did a drive by. We then headed for the beach but not before we managed to get lost a drive into a super fancy 5* resort which was super awkward in a Subaru Forester. After a quick U-turn, we finally managed to find the beach and also this sign…
The only thing we all wanted to do was swim and we couldn’t because of crocs. So instead of course we went and searched for some crocs, about half an hour later and no crocs, not even a pair of hideous sandals/shoes we decided to leave and go to nearby Mossman Gorge, which was the best decision of the day. It was totally different than Crystal Cascades the car park was packed and there was a lot of tours going on. They had an awesome set up with a cafe, visitor centre and a shop full of aboriginal which was really nice to see. There was a shuttle bus to and from the gorge which cost $9.20 each but as previously said above we’re backpackers that don’t have a lot of money. So we decided to walk the 4km there and back which was not recommended by the staff because you have to walk along the main road. The walk was hot, sweaty and there was no shade, but after the 2km we’d never been so happy to see water. As soon as you get to the Gorge there’s a walkway type platform that leads you through the rainforest to the main water hole/swimming spot. As we were super hot we decided to swim first. The water was crystal clear and really deep, unlike the Crystal Cascaded which was a pleasant surprise. It was a little cold to start with but really refreshing. There are huge boulders which you can swim to and sit on scattered throughout the stream and as the current was so strong it was nice to have them there to cling onto and sit on when we were tired from swimming against the current. After our tiring swim, we decided to head up to the lookout and take some clique photos, mainly the boys not me. There’s also an old style bridge you can walk across that goes over the stream which is really nice and has incredible views. We then did the dreaded 2km walk back to the car park and endured the tiring drive home, on the plus the road leading to Mossman is a beautiful coastal road and definitely is an experience in itself, There’s also a few other beaches between Cairns and Port Douglas which we didn’t get a chance to visit this time round. All in all, Mossman Gorge takes the title for the best visit of the day however the other two are definitely worth the visit.
All Photo credit goes to Lynchy.
Thanks for reading!