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Featured Wildlife Journeys

  • Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo

  • Ulysses Butterfly

  • Southern Cassowary

  • Saltwater Crocodile

  • Boyd's Forest Dragon

FNQ Nature Tours

Tablelands & Crater Lakes

From: $945 USD

Duration: Full Day

Type: Private Charter, Shared.

Departs: Daily

Interests: Land Mammals & Marsupials.

On this epic day adventure, you will experience a spectacular mix of habitats across the Atherton Tablelands; from lush rainforest, volcanic lakes, wetlands through to savanna country. Located in the highland region southwest of Cairns, this tour covers landmarks such as the Cathedral Fig Tree, Lake Barrine and Milla Milla Falls, and opportunity to spot the Platypus and Tree Kangaroo.

  • The rainforests of the Tablelands provide habitat for a rich array of marsupials, reptiles, invertebrates and over 320 species of bird. Iconic bird species include the Victoria’s Riflebird, Golden Bowerbird, Tooth-billed Bowerbird, Atherton Scrubwren, Bridled Honeyeater, Pied Monarch, Stone Curlew, Black-faced Monarch, Red-backed Fairy-wren and Forest Kingfisher.

  • A visit to Lake Barrine provides you with a very high likelihood of seeing the elusive Platypus along with opportunities to see a the Red-legged Pademelon, Musky Rat Kangaroo, Snapping Turtle, Giant Eel, Eastern Water Dragon, Saw-shell Turtle and one of the areas most iconic species, the Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo.

About FNQ Nature Tours:

After ten years of guiding nature and wildlife safaris in Northern Australia, James Boettcher established FNQ Nature Tours in 2015, with a firm belief that tourism is the key to the protection and conservation of this World Heritage area. The company offers tours designed for nature minded travellers desiring a personal, educational and interactive guided experience, whilst sharing the necessity of protecting the natural wonders and biodiversities of this world famous region.

Group Price (1-4 passengers), including touring & meals. Pricing is subject to availability and all prices, itineraries and routings are subject to change without notice. Currency fluctuations may affect prices as quotes based on AUD. Prices are current at time of posting (1/4/2024) and may differ when you book your travel. Please contact us for our current pricing and itinerary details**


Tour day-by-day

  • Full Day Tablelands & Crater Lakes

    Departing early morning from Cairns, guests will travel up to the highlands of the Atherton Tablelands, to experience beautiful panoramic vistas across sections of this World Heritage Listed ecosystem. Upon arrival to the Danbulla State Forest, travellers will reach the famous Cathedral Fig Tree, a gigantic 500-year-old strangler tree measuring 50 metres high, with a trunk circumference of 39 metres.

    Led by your expert guide, this is a prime area to spot the regions abundant songbirds, including the Red-backed Fairy-wren, Golden Bowerbird, Pale-yellow Robin, Grey-headed Robin, McLeays Honeyeater, Bridled Honeyeater, Blue-faced Honeyeater, Spectacled Monarch, Pied Monarch and Australia’s very own bird of paradise, the Victoria’s Riflebird.

    Next stop is Lake Barrine, a crater lake formed when rising lava was pushed against underground water, resulting in dramatic explosions around 10,000 years ago. After a delicious morning tea, guests will be led by their guide to learn about the flora and fauna alongside the lakeside rainforest, with the opportunity to also enjoy a one hour lake cruise for more wildlife and photographic opportunities.

    Matt Cornish 01"We often see three species of Bowerbirds - the Tooth-billed Bowerbird, Great Bowerbird and Golden Bowerbird; up to seven of the 10 Kingfisher species that exist in Australia; and all sorts of other birds. It’s incredible.” Matt Cornish - Guide

    This provides the opportunity to see Red-legged Pademelons, Musky Rat Kangaroos, Snapping Giant Eels, Eastern Water Dragons, Saw-shell Turtles and numerous birds. After a delicious seafood lunch, the group will search for one of Australia’s most intriguing animals, the Platypus.

    To finish off the day, guests will take in the spectacular panoramas of Milla Milla lookout, an incredibly picturesque 18-metre waterfall, with the option to take a swim or spend time at Lake Eacham or venture out to spot one of the area’s most iconic species, the Lumholtz Tree-Kangaroo.

    Guests will be returned to Cairns at approximately 5:30pm.

  • Tour details:

    Pricing: from $1250 AUD (total group price for 1-4 passengers)
    Private Group Size: Maximum of 7 guests
    Pick-up and Drop Off Point: Cairns/Northern Beaches/Port Douglas
    Pick-up and Drop-off Time: Cairns 7:30am/Northern beaches 08:00am/Port Douglas 8:30am (location dependent), Drop off approximately 5:00pm

    How you'll be making a positive impact

    We have aligned our sustainability vision with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
    E-WEB-Goal-15Citizen Science with FNQ Nature Tours

    FNQ Nature Tours contributes observations of flora & fauna via iNaturalist, the world’s leading global social biodiversity network. This platform allows our team to create research-quality citizen science data that enables a more detailed picture of our national biodiversity, and assists bodies such as the CSIRO, ecologists and other decision makers to deliver better outcomes for the environment and our species.

    Our guides record observations with iNaturalist Australia by using the iNaturalist app on mobile phones or desktop computers. An observation records an encounter with an individual organism at a particular time and location in Far North Queensland. We require photos to be attached to observations for them to become research grade and added to the Atlas of Living Australia.

    This is where you can greatly assist us in capturing images out on tour! Although we make broader observations that we think are valuable to the local scientific community, we have identified the following species to track when we are exploring Far North Queensland by vehicle or on foot.

    Key species we're looking out for include:

    • Black-throated Finch
    • Grey Goshawk (white morph)
    • Lesser Sooty Owl
    • Southern Cassowary
    • Red-necked Crake
    • Lumholtz’s Tree-Kangaroo
    • Green-eyed Tree Frog
    • Boyd’s Forest Dragon
    • Great-billed Heron
    E-WEB-Goal-17Developing Partnerships To Meet Sustainability Goals

    FNQ Nature Tours have developed a number of partnerships with key environmental organisations in Far North Queensland, including FNQ Wildlife Rescue, Bush Heritage, Forever Wild, Australian Quoll Conservancy, Tolga Bat Hospital, Tree Roo Rescue and Wildlife & Raptor Care Queensland.

    Forever Wild, Australian Quoll Conservancy, Tolga Bat Hospital, Tree Roo Rescue and Wildlife & Raptor Care Queensland are all supporte financially via special touring experienecs provided by FNQ Nature Tours.

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