Daintree Rainforest is the oldest tropical rainforest on Earth!

When visiting North Queensland, the famous Daintree Rainforest is one must-see place to check out.

This World Heritage-listed rainforest is the oldest living rainforest in the World.  Add this to your trip to North Queensland.

About the Daintree Rainforest

Between Cooktown and Cairns, the Greater Daintree region sits. The Coral Sea borders the rainforest north of the Daintree River.  The Greater Daintree Area is a little over 1200 square kilometres.  Over the years, around 5 to 6 per cent of the forest has been cleared for agriculture.

Starting from Mt Carbine, the Daintree River is one hundred and forty kilometres in length areas of this river plunge as high as one thousand metres over a distance of five to eight kilometres before the swift flows directly into the Coral Sea.

Dominated by thriving vegetation of ferns, cycads and mosses, the Daintree Rainforest is believed to be about 120 million years old.

Recycling plant

Along the rainforest floor, a recycling machine is in action.  With a process that takes between two and three months to break down trees, branches, and leaves.

Up to 10 tonnes of litter per hectare fall each year

Wood cockroaches and beetles move into the freshly dead wood, allowing the fungi to enter and begin the decay process.

Next, the animals, including whitetail rats and striped possums, move in to tear the wood to pieces searching for insect larvae.

Billions of minute organisms play an essential role in processing the litre.

The result is a nutrient-rich dark organic humus

Rainforest birds also play an essential role in the recycling process as fern wrens, scrub fowl and bush turkeys continually turn the rainforest litter over, searching for food such as small animals and insects.

Bizarre and beautiful fungi play one of the most critical roles in recycling.

Once a plant is dead or injured, the fungi spore moves in to bring on the death of plants and trees.

Queensland’s wet tropics boast the highest concentration of ferns in Australia, and more than half of the 430 Australian species occur here, and 46 of those in the Daintree Rainforest.


Daintree Rainforest canopy

North Queensland’s wet tropics region has the most extraordinary diversity of cycads in Australia and the most extraordinary diversity of significant groups of cycads anywhere.  The giant cycad, ‘Lepidozomia Hopei’, can reach a height of 20 metres and grows throughout the Daintree lowland rainforest.

The giant or king fern grows to a height of four metres.

Animals and reptiles

Bennet’s tree kangaroo inhabits both upland and lowland of the rainforest on the north side of the Daintree River

Musky rat kangaroos and long nose bandicoots are Daintree River ringtails, and both the Bennett and the Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo live north of the Daintree River.   Small numbers of spotted-tailed Quoll are found in the lowlands of the Daintree Rainforest.

Frogs, birds, fish and bats live in this amazing ancient rainforest.  It’s a fascinating destination.

Beautiful Beaches

While you are here, there are excellent beaches to check out, including Noah Beach, Cow Bay Beach and Thornton’s Beach.

You can also visit Cape Tribulation Beach, Myall Beach and Coconut Beach for more swimming and sunbathing opportunities.


Boardwalks provide picnicking facilities for a perfect afternoon of hiking and exploring this famous rainforest.

Things to do

Daintree Rainforest tours are varied, and some fantastic budget options include all the main attractions.   While you are visiting, taking a boat tour down the Daintree River, looking for crocodiles and other wildlife is necessary.

The Daintree Rainforest hosts extensive boardwalks through the national park.

Discover the Daintree Rainforest
Dubuji Boardwalk

While exploring the Daintree Rainforest, stop by the Bat House at Cape Tribulation.

Afterwards, stop by the Daintree Ice Cream Company for homemade ice cream to make your mouth water.

To make the most of your time visiting the Daintree Rainforest, you can go fishing, take joy flights and even walk the rainforest at night to view the nocturnal wildlife.

If you’d like to stay in the rainforest instead of expensive hotels, even accommodations are available for visiting Cairns on a budget.

The Daintree Rainforest offers many rustic campgrounds for camping in the rainforest.

Here you will find inexpensive cabins, lodges and other affordable options for staying in the rainforest.

Next, see the Great Barrier Reef from Cape Tribulation.