Circumnavigating Australia — Kuranda Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Ursula enjoying Barron Falls

On February 14 Radiance of the Seas anchored off Yorkey’s Knob. From offshore we would tender into the port that serves Cairns, but Cairns was not on today’s agenda. We were instead slated to visit the oldest rainforest in the world, older even than the Amazon.

Kuranda Skyrail map

Getting there would entail taking an aerial tramway, not my favorite form of transport to be sure. You would think someone who spent over 34 years working in tall, skinny control towers, one with an open-air stairway, would not have a fear of heights. Guess again. That queasiness still remains.

The old Davis-Monthan A.F.B. Control Tower

But returning to today’s topic, this is the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. Fortunately, this was a one-way trip. Our return was decidedly more grounded, as you’ll see Wednesday when I take you aboard the Kuranda Scenic Railway for the return trip.

Kuranda Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

The Skyrail Rainforest Cableway station was just a short bus ride from Yorky’s Knob, lasting but a few minutes. We boarded our gondola and rose high above the Barron Gorge National Park.

Kuranda Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

Along the way we made a stop at the Red Peak station, where we alighted from our gondola and strolled into the rainforest. Here you’ll find a 575-foot/175-meter elevated boardwalk:

Walking around the rainforest at Red Peak Station

Here’s an interesting piece of Kuranda flora known  as a basket fern growing high atop a tree:

Basket fern at Red Peak Station

We had another stop along the way, and this was at the Barron Falls station. Alas, Barron Falls was not running very impressively today, and the view from this lookout was less impressive than the view of it during the return railway trip (which you’ll see Wednesday):

Barron Falls was a mere trickle this day

Still, the rainforest flora here was worth a view:

Flora at the Barron Falls station

One last look from the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway high above the Barron Gorge rainforest:

The world’s oldest rainforest — older than the Amazon!


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