Kuranda Village & Scenic Railway

Kuranda Village is situated in the rainforest a short journey from Nomads Cairns. With lots of activities and stunning scenery it's a must see when visiting the area. Many people make the easy decision to spend the day up there, however the hard decision arises when choosing how to get there.

Kuranda is famous for its Sky Rail and its Scenic Railway. Both these offer beautiful views of the surrounding area and are an awesome way to access the little village. The sky rail, spanning 7.5km over the rainforest, cruises just meters from the rainforest canopy allowing you to become part of the tropical rainforest. Brand new for 2013 - a glass bottomed gondola giving a birds eye view of the canopy below (not for the faint hearted!) Make sure you jump on and off the Skyrail at each stop for boardwalks and stunning lookout points into the forest and across the falls. If you are lucky you will catch a glimpse of the historic train winding down the steep track. You can also choose the optional add on of the new Djabugay traditional walks that have just been introduced - where a local indigenous guide will take you to a private part of the rainforest and introduce you to the ways of life on the land.

Glass floor wide shot

Once disembarking the 90 minute Sky Rail the endless activities in Kuranda await you.

With everything to do from Crazy golf in the rainforest, markets, River cruises, and Butterfly and Koala sanctuaries you can understand why this area is a must see. Also don't miss the hidden dinosaur museum - a real treasure! Kuranda offers something for everyone and the daily activities allow flexibility to chose what you want to see, when you want to see it. Take a 45 minute River boat cruise though the 100 acres of rainforest followed by a rainforest walk taking you to the spectacular Barron Falls, which is a year round beauty - particularly spectacular in the Cairns wet season (January - March).

Barron Falls

For all those animals lovers spend the day visiting the Wildlife Sanctuary, Butterfly park, Koala Sanctuary and Venom Zoo to fill up hours of the day. Alternatively spend the afternoon walking around the Kuranda Markets open daily and taking part in the 'Candy Kitchen' candle making. Taste the hottest chilli in the world or sample the local delicious honey in hundreds of flavours - Kuranda is certainly a sensation for the senses.

With so much to do you may or may not want to return back to Cairns! Here is some incentive though - the Scenic Railway is a spectacular journey back down though the rainforest. It passes by beautiful waterfalls and though the famous Barron Gorge. The train ride also provides you with commentary informing you all about the history of the area and the interesting story behind the building of the rail track. With a stop at the Barron Falls for 10 minutes make sure you have your camera at the ready for the best vantage point in town.

kuranda train commons

And if you are feeling decadent why not upgrade your trip to Gold Class - where you will be treated to dedicated host service, lounge style chairs, quality refreshments (think cocktails and champagne), a souvenir gift pack and trip guide.

The optimum way to see Kuranda in our opinion is to travel up with the Skyrail - while you are still fresh in the morning you have lots of energy for the bush walks and indigenous tour, then back on the Scenic Railway when you are frazzled from an awesome day sightseeing, koala cuddling, shopping, eating and drinking and need to lounge back in the comfy seats for a couple of hours! Currently this option is available from $107 per person.

We can help you organise transfers to the Skyrail to make your way to Kuranda, then the Scenic Rail will drop you at Cairns Central Station - where you can take a short walk across town to the Nomads Cairns free shuttle bus back to the hostel - or you can spend the evening in the City celebrating an awesome rainforest experience!

Kuranda Train - By spaceodissey (originally posted to Flickr as The way to Kuranda) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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