There’s so much to do around Cairns.
It takes two blog posts to tell you about what we did, though, we were only there for five days.
Atherton Tablelands and surrounding region was our next port of call. The road up the mountains to the Tablelands is 19km of a very winding road.
Memories of Mum scolding Dad to “Slow down Perc” rang in my ears. Likewise, images of Dad driving around the mountain like an F1 driver at Bathurst bought back many good memories.
Luckily today’s cars are better balanced. Similarly, air-conditioning ensures you don’t see any mothers on the side of the road with car sick children.
Cathedral Fig Tree and The Curtain Fig
The Cathedral Fig Tree was just as spectacular as I remember, and Chris was suitably impressed.
The crown of this magnificent feat of nature is around 2000 square meters, the size of two Olympic swimming pools. The birth of the tree was from a single seed, the size of a sesame seed dropped by a bird or bat into a host tree.
Eventually, the host tree died, leaving this magnificent fig tree in its place.
The Curtain Fig originated the same way, but its host tree fell to the side, creating this impressive fig tree.
The Cathedral Fig Tree
The Curtain Fig Tree
We love walking through rainforests because if you do it slowly and quietly, you can witness so many other fabulous gifts from God.
A nesting bird hidden in the trees
Tinaroo Falls Dam
We continued following the road driving around Lake Tinaroo finally reaching the Tinaroo Falls Dam. Lake Tinaroo is the region’s water supply. The lake was created in 1959 when the Barron River was blocked. The locals use it for all their water sports, and from the number of campers and caravans there it’s well utilised.
The power of the released water could be felt from meters away
Campers and Caravaners were enjoying the water activities on Tinaroo Dam
With hunger setting in, the Gallo dairy farm was a delight. Established in 1937, the family-owned dairy farm is an educational experience as well as satisfying our taste buds. Handcrafted chocolates, gourmet cheese and delicious Greek yoghurt all made on the premises. We dined on steak in the fully licenced restaurant while overlooking lush green pastures. For dessert, a selection of their cheeses, figs and crackers to eat while continuing our travels.
Millaa Millaa Falls
Millaa Millaa Falls, the most photographed falls in Australia was our next stop. With the car park at its edge, it was an easy walk. The falls cascade into a pristine waterhole below where you can swim.
It sounded wonderfully relaxing from the internet, but in reality, with the number of people there, radios blaring, people yelling we took our photos and moved on.
Millaa Millaa Falls, the most photographed waterfall in Australia.
Nerada Tea Plantation
Now we’re not tea drinkers but had to stop at the Nerada Tea Plantation. You see all those photos of Indian workers picking tea by hand with their bags hanging from their heads. That doesn’t happen here. Labour is too expensive in this country, so the tea is picked with a machine which takes off just the new tea leaves. As stated here from the Nerada website
As there was no machinery on the market anywhere in the world that met his criteria, Bill did what every other pioneering farmer has done before him – he set about custom-making one to his specifications with what was available right there, with help from local tradespeople.
We love hearing of innovated people and companies that don’t whine about their problems but set out to conquer them.
The beautiful afternoon tea ended up with us purchasing fresh tea to savour at home. We need a teapot now as Chris doesn’t like tea bags. Oh well, it looks like a trip to the shops for Christopher, something he so enjoys.
Have you heard of a “Tree Kangaroo”? We hadn’t, but they have several residing at Nerada Tea Plantation. One of the staff was happy to take us out to witness this creature in the wild.
Have a look on the internet about these fabulous creatures.
The usual stop at the shops
As usual, the last day was spent at a shopping centre getting stock for the camp and anything we needed, e.g. a new teapot.
Chris has changed his mind on Cairn. My mission was a success. He wants to come back again, soon, to continue discovering the wonderful aspects of this place he had never seen before.