4.5 star rating: Recommended 8 Reviews

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  • Location: Cairns, Australia
  • Duration:  11 hours 30 minutes (approx.)
Discover the high-elevation landscapes of the Atherton and Southern tablelands on a rainforest and waterfalls excursion from Cairns. Spot rare kangaroos and the shy platypus, see some of Australia’s oldest and tallest trees, and take a morning cruise on tranquil Lake Barrine. Travel along the Waterfall Circuit to swim in Millaa Millaa Falls, and explore the romantic gardens and castle ruins at Paronella Park. With plenty of stops at rainforest lookouts to take in wonderful views across the tablelands, enjoy more personalized attention on this small-group tour, with numbers limited to 21 passengers.


  • Atherton tablelands, Waterfall Circuit and Paronella Park tour from Cairns
  • Enjoy a relaxing morning cruise on the volcanic crater of Lake Barrine
  • Visit the giant curtain fig tree and 1,000-year-old twin kauri pine trees on a short guided walk
  • See a shy platypus at Tarzali Lakes Aquaculture Centre
  • Take a swim in the untamed beauty of Millaa Millaa Falls
  • Tour Paronella Park and view Mena Creek Falls, the heritage gardens and castle ruins
  • Eat a 2-course lunch on top of Mungalli Falls
  • Pickup and drop-off from Cairns hotels

What You Can Expect

Atherton Tablelands, Paronella Park and Millaa Millaa Waterfall Circuit Eco-Tour

Giant Curtain Fig Tree in Yungaburra

After being picked up from your Cairns, Northern Beaches or Palm Cove hotel, travel to the high-elevation rainforests of the Tablelands. Ascending the Lamb Range, take in panoramic views of the Mulgrave River valley from Heales Lookout, looking down onto the coastal rainforest from the Atherton and Southern tablelands.

Stop for a morning Devonshire tea with freshly baked scones, then take a morning cruise on the calm waters of Lake Barrine. Admire the old-growth World Heritage-listed rainforest surrounding the lake's extinct volcanic crater, and look for wildlife basking on the shoreline. Back on land, take a short walk to see the towering 1,000-year-old twin kauri pine trees, some of Australia's tallest trees.

After a short drive, take a guided walk along the boardwalks to see an ancient giant curtain fig tree, and try to spot the area's rare tree kangaroos. Then visit a private sanctuary at Tarzali Lakes to see one of Australia's shyest native animals, the platypus, in its creek habitat.

The Waterfall Circuit takes you through a network of beautiful waterfalls flowing year-round. Take a quick swim at lovely Millaa Millaa Falls, and follow quiet country roads to enjoy a tasting of cheese and yogurt at Mungalli Creek Organic Dairy. Admire the area’s dairy pastures en route to Mungalli Falls, the area’s tallest waterfalls, where a two-course lunch is served in a private outdoor gazebo on top of the falls.

After lunch, stop at Crawford's Lookout to see an amazing view of North Johnstone Gorge en route to Paronella Park. Follow your knowledgeable guide around Paronella’s National Trust-listed heritage gardens, the romantic ruins of a Spanish-style castle and the crumbling remains of the area's first hydroelectric plant. Enjoy free time to visit the museum, and feed fish and turtles at Mena Creek Falls.

Take in views of Mt Bellenden Ker and Mt Bartle Frere, two of Queensland's highest mountains, on the scenic drive back to Cairns, the Northern Beaches or Palm Cove, where you will be dropped off at your hotel.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

A great day!! More driving than I would have liked between the different spots, but a great way to see the Tablelands. The boat ride was very smooth letting us see the rainforest. Paronella Park was lovely and the only castle in Australia.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

Very beautiful scene and very nice tour guide. My parents love it so much!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2014

This was my second tour after a gap of nearly twenty years - it is still a very special trip.My only disappointment was the deterioration of Paronella Park since my last visit but I am pleased to hear that some significant restoration work is to be undertaken in the near future.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2014

Great tour. Really enjoyed the day and the introduction to the Atherton Tablelands. Speaking to locals about the area, most of the places they recommend we see were covered by this tour. We had a fantastic guide with a good combination of chatting with us and giving us general information, but also allowing rest/ snooze time on the way back for those who wanted it. Long day, but very worth it.

4 star rating: Recommended August 2014

We had a lovely day visiting the Atherton Tablelands. The coach driver was very helpful, the waterfalls spectacular and we managed to have a good viewing of Platypus in the wild.
Overall a very enjoyable day.
Many Thanks.

4 star rating: Recommended April 2014

It's quite a bit of driving, but you can watch the landscape. The Paronella Park is the best part of this tour and would say a must see. Beautiful place to have lunch near the waterfalls.

3 star rating: Worth doing March 2015

The tour guide was very nice and knowledgable. The tour itself was enjoyable. Although, it says in the voucher you have the opportunity to swim, no one besides myself and two other girls decided to swim on the tour. I highly recommend bringing a swimsuit to swim under the waterfalls. Even though I enjoyed the tour, I did find a few faults. The voucher states that the tour visits a private sanctuary at Tarzali Lakes to see one of Australia's shyest native animals, the platypus, in its creek habitat but we did not go on our tour. Also, tree kangaroos are nocturnal so it is almost impossible to see them on the tour. There was also no tasting of cheese and yogurt at Mungalli Creek Organic Dairy. Also the two-course lunch is served in a private outdoor gazebo on top of the falls was actually a subpar italian buffet lunch on the side of the road. The Paronellas National Trust-listed heritage gardens, although not worth the price they charge if not on a tour, was really pretty with a very interesting history. Overall a tour worth doing, but just be aware that you may not do everything listed on the voucher.

3 star rating: Worth doing August 2014

Lovely driver who did All he could on the rainy day of our trip. The itinerary could have been better as trip soon became boring and many people found the paronella park visit too long. The cheese tasting was to a shop not to a dairy so really a shopping trip. The food at
Lunch. was a bit dodgy -not sure about good hygiene . Also at some of the toilet stops. only cold wAter to wash hands . The tea in the afternoon broke all rules for hygiene with not enough cookies for the guests so plates of left over cookies from other tables being placed for us to eat after people had ,maybe touched them etc Or insects had been on them as outdoors, did same with milk etc. Better trips to do in Cairns like Daintree trip.

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Tour code: 5917_5


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