Heron/Fraser vs Cairns/Palm Cove

Jan 30th, 2004, 12:52 PM
Posts: n/a
Heron/Fraser vs Cairns/Palm Cove

Planning our first trip to Australia. Will be spending three weeks - 2 weeks in Sydney/NSW area exploring - have family to visit. We want to spend one week in GBR. Travel agent advised Heron/Fraser but I'm afraid we will get very bored. I am thinking of planning myself a week in Cairns/Palm Cove. Interested in all the things to see ie Cape Trib,Karunda,snorkel one day (have never done this before) etc. The week in question is April 12th. What can we expect weather-wise? do you agree that we will see and enjoy more in Northen Queensland rather than 2 islands?
Jan 30th, 2004, 05:09 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 3,680
Hi Plantlady - Heron is a long way off-shore to go for just one day's snorkelling and there's nothing very inspiring on the nearby mainland. Fraser is wonderful for naturelovers but no good for snorkelling or swimming in the sea, although there are some beautiful, clear inland lakes. Palm Cove is actually a beach suburb of Cairns and basing yourself in either location would give you easy access to GBR, Kuranda, Daintree, Atherton Tableland - much more variety in scenery than you would have from Heron and Fraser alone. Weather will be warm and humidity should have lifted by April, so it's usually a good month to be here.
pat_woolford is offline  
Feb 1st, 2004, 11:02 AM
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We have decided to spend the week in Cairns area instead. Thinking of staying in Palm Cove as we do like the "quiet." Will we be able to access all trips from there without renting a car? Or, do you recommend staying in PD or Cairns? Plan the following: snorkel trip one day to GBR, Kuranda Skyrail/train day two, Daintree - Day 3, relax day four. Also, we usually do our own thing as tours are not us! But, is it better to do tours and not rent a vehicle?
Feb 1st, 2004, 12:05 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,083
Hi Plantlady,
Its possible to do pretty much any tour you like from both PD and PC,however if you are used to doing things at your own pace you may find some of the tours a bit stiffling.
If its quiet you want, PC is perfect, Kuranda is easily reachable from either place, the local bus service is pretty good between Cairns PC and PD.
One word of advice regarding islands, please check out the posts for Green Island, it may not be as fabulous as it appears, but please make up your own mind on that one.

Have fun

Mucky is offline  
Feb 1st, 2004, 04:25 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 3,680
Hi Plantlady - the public bus from Cairns to Palm Cove is pretty good, as Mucky says, but it doesn't run to Port Douglas which is about 40 mins drive north of Palm Cove and an hour from Cairns. There's a private coach service for this and for 4 people it would be much cheaper to rent a car. a car is absolutely no use to you for your day on the reef (check Ocean Spirit to Michaelmas or Upolo Cays) which goes out of Cairns and picks up at both Cairns and PC - there is no pickup charge for the Michaelmas trip. Skyrail will pick you up at a nominal charge from or near your accommodation at either PC or Cairns so you won't need a car for that one. You can drive yourself to Cape Tribulation in Daintree Rainforest, don't need 4WD as road is now sealed all the way - however, for this one you'll gain a lot more out of your day with a guide/driver - Trek North's guides are knowledgable and once again will pick up at accommodation.
pat_woolford is offline  
Feb 2nd, 2004, 06:39 AM
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Well, it looks like it's Palm Cove. Thanks for the info. One final question, as I am just now putting this part of the trip together, Easter is the 11th; is the week after a school break? We are flexible and can go to the area the week before if that is advisable.

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