This scenic part of Girramay National Park features lowland rainforest, open eucalypt forest, paperbark woodland, sedge swamps and extensive mangrove forests as well as secluded beaches with island views. The park's swamps are flooded by wet season rains flowing from coastal ranges, and, as the flood waters subside, the swamps become a tranquil setting, the water stained with tannin from the tea-trees. This diverse wetland park is in the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. Enjoy a relaxing stroll along the beach to the mouth of Wreck Creek (5 kilometre return). Birdwatch and have a picnic at Rockingham Bay day-use area with views of 13 offshore islands. Walk the newly-replaced boardwalk through a mangrove forest still recovering from a cyclone. Visit the Arthur Thorsborne Aboretum near the park entrance for a shady picnic and discover local rainforest plants along the short, wheelchair-accessible loop track.
Hinchinbrook is one of Australia's most impressive and rugged continental islands. Hinchinbrook Channel, which separates the island from the mainland, is renowned for its variety of mangroves and dugong populations. The island's cloud-covered mountains support fragile heaths, and rainforest and eucalypt forests descend to a mangrove-lined channel in the west with bays, beaches and rocky headlands along the east coast. The island lies within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and its surrounding marine park waters, fringing reefs and seagrass beds are home to some vulnerable species, including dugong and green turtles. This island park offers isolation and wilderness. Take a short walk from Macushla to Cape Richards, North Shepherd or South Shepherd bays. Enjoy bird watching and experience vibrant wildflower displays in spring. Trek along the remote east coast Thorsborne Trail for four to seven days or explore the island's coastline by sea kayak, bush camping along the way. Book early to avoid disappointment.
Offshore from Cardwell, in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, this tall forested island features granite outcrops overlooking white sandy beaches. Dugong and sea turtles feed on seagrass beds in shallow waters surrounding the island. The area is significant to Aboriginal people and the island contains reminders of their special culture, including middens and fish traps. Relax, bush camp and picnic on the Spit (Western Beach) and enjoy superb views of nearby Hinchinbrook Island. Explore the island on walking tracks, ranging from four kilometres to 15 kilometres return, through open eucalypt woodland and rock-hopping around the beaches. Explore patches of rainforest flourishing in rocky gullies. Watch mudskippers and crabs amongst the mangroves. In summer, listen for Pied Imperial-pigeons as they feed in the rainforest then fly off in the afternoon to nest on nearby Brook Island.
Murray Falls, within Girramay National Park, is one of north Queensland's prettiest waterfalls, with large volumes of water racing over naturally sculpted granite boulders. Rainforested mountains and tropical lowlands meet in the attractive foothills of the Kirrama Range. The clear waters of the Murray River cascade over boulders into rock pools in this picturesque spot, which is part of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. Enjoy a picnic in the grassy and shaded day-use area by the river. Stroll along the boardwalk to a viewing platform near the falls. For the more adventurous, take moderately graded 1.8 kilometre return walk through a cool rainforest gully, and then up into open forest and spectacular views over the falls and Murray Valley. Look for wallabies, possums and a variety of reptiles. Bring binoculars and watch for many colourful birds. Enjoy colourful wildflower displays in spring. Access the river from the day-use area but take care as the water is often fast flowing and the rocks slippery, however access to the river upstream of the day-use area is not permitted. Slippery rocks make it dangerous and serious injuries have occurred. .