Be ready for a day of adventure. You coach will collect you in the morning from your accommodation - upon arrival at the station, you’ll then make your way past the ticket queues to board your assigned carriage and seat.
As you wind through tunnels, past thick rainforest, and waterfalls tumbling into deep ravines you’ll understand how lives were lost in the construction of this historic railway in the late 1800s.
Once at the quaint ‘Village in the Rainforest’, located 330m above sea level, you’ll have up to two hours to explore. Grab lunch at one of the many cafés and restaurants, and if time permits, venture along one of the walking trails. Showcasing Kuranda’s ingrained arts culture, the Heritage Markets are a must-do.
You’ll then be collected by the Rainforestation Nature Park coach at the meeting point of the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, 100m from the markets. Home to rainforest explorations aboard the amphibious World War II army duck and the Koala and Wildlife Park, you’ll walk away from this with a deeper understanding and appreciation for the surrounding World Heritage-listed rainforest.
You’ll journey home aboard the 3.30pm Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. Gliding above rainforest canopy you’ll enjoy spectacular panoramic views of the Coral Sea and tropical landscape.
Your day starts with a coach pick-up from your accommodation in Cairns or the Northern Beaches. The exact pick-up time will vary depending on which Kuranda Scenic Railway train you’ve chosen to start the day on: the 8.50am or 9.50am. Where you’re staying will also determine the pick-up time, which will be communicated to you upon booking.
You’ll arrive at the station to board your pre-allocated seat and carriage at either 8.50am or 9.50am. Built in the late 1800s, the construction of this railway line is an engineering feat even by today’s standards. As you pass panoramic views, travel over dozens of bridges, through 15 tunnels, and around 93 curves, listen to the informative commentary; you’ll understand how lives were lost during its construction. The trip will take approximately 90 minutes.
If travelling to Kuranda aboard the Scenic Rail, an upgrade to Gold Class is available on the 9.50am train. Here you’ll be treated to dedicated host service, lounge-style chairs, and delectable delights from the Tablelands and Queensland such as Gallo Dairyland cheese, Skybury coffee, Wondaree macadamias, Sirromet Wines, Great Northern lager, and more.
Once at Kuranda, you’ll have two or three hours to explore on your own, depending on whether you’ve taken the early train or not. Take your pick of the many cafés and restaurants for lunch; with a focus on local produce you’ll find fresh, delicious nosh almost anyway. Then wander through the Heritage Markets, or venture along one of the many walking trails, whether its deeper in the to rainforest, to along the river.
The Rainforestation shuttle will pick you up from the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Only five minutes from Kuranda Village, Rainforestation Nature Park is a 40-hectare attraction offering a unique exploration of World Heritage-listed rainforest.
You’ll board the amphibious World War II army duck for a unique rainforest tour across both land and lake, where your guide will identify and explain fascinating plants and wildlife along the way. The park is also home to many native species such as crocodiles, dingoes, snakes, lizards, the endangered Cassowary. Handfeed kangaroos and wallabies, cuddle a koala, or hold a baby crocodile. It’s also the only place in North Queensland where you’ll find a Tasmanian Devil.
At 3.30pm you’ll board the Skyrail for your 7.5km return journey to Cairns. As your gondola descends from the Atherton Tablelands you’ll glide above rainforest canopy, over the Barron River, and past tumbling waterfalls. This is one of the most spectacular ways to experience the region’s World Heritage-listed rainforest. You’ll also have an opportunity to alight at two stations along the way. The first is Barron Falls Station where you can visit the CSIRO Rainforest Interpretation Centre and view the almighty Barron Falls. Red Peak Station is the second stop. Here you can enjoy a complimentary ranger-guided tour. Allow approximately 20 minutes for each stop.
Your coach will be waiting at Smithfield Terminal to take you back to your Cairns or Northern Beaches accommodation.
Cairns City & Northern Beaches pickups 7 – 8.30 am
January - December
Closed Christmas Day
Operation may be affected by severe weather conditions, and during planned, preventative maintenance
9.5 hours approx.
Kuranda Boarding Passes can be provided in one of the following languages: German, Italian, French, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese
Very well organised and good arrangement. Clear instruction and excellent staffs.
Response From Barrier Reef Australia
Hi Guylaine, thanks for your feedback. We are pleased to hear you had a great day in Kuranda and took the chance to explore all there is to offer in and around the rainforest village. Thanks for booking with The Tour Specialists.
Fantastic day with a great rail trip with amazing views and commentry.Karanda was also a great village to stop at and inspect the markets.Rainforrestation was very informative with further close up views of the rain forrest.only minor issue was the guide on the Army duck who talked a bit quick and was a bit hard to follow.
Response From Barrier Reef Australia
We are very happy you enjoyed your action-packed day in Kuranda Village & the Rainforestation and enjoyed seeing Cairns & The Great Barrier Reef from a different perspective.
Ramps and paved pathways available throughout the park
The Pamagirri Aboriginal Cultural centre is accessible with a designated viewing platform at the amphitheatre
Access to the Wildlife section is paved for viewing of all animals
The amphibious Army Ducks can be boarded from platform 2 with barriers removed, seats are higher for ease of transfer from wheelchair
Visual information available
Accessible toilet facilities located next to the restaurant
Wheelchairs cannot exceed 630mm in width and 950mm in length.
The cableway will be paused to assist with boarding for all mobility impaired guests.
Wheelchairs must have handles to assist loading
Wheelchairs must be capable of being tilted back during loading
Complimentary ranger-guided tour at Red Peak Station
Printed information provided at Tjapukai and also in the form of the Kuranda Boarding Pass, which provides a detailed tour itinerary
Wheelchair accessible restroom facilities at all 4 stations
Ramp access to boardwalks at the 2 scenic viewing stations
Access to CSIRO Interpretation Centre at Barron Falls Station
Wheelchair lifts onto train carriage at Freshwater and Kuranda stations
Cairns Train Station level with platforms
Wheelchairs cannot exceed 630mm in width and 950mm in length
No wheelchair access facilities at Barron Falls Station
Wheelchair compliant ramps at all stations
Maximum 4 dedicated wheelchair areas on each train located in central carriages
Information in braille at Cairns Station
Audio commentary during train journey
Visual information provided
1 wheelchair accessible toilet on board all train services and at Cairns, Freshwater and Kuranda Stations
Please advise at time of booking whether wheelchair access is required.
All cancellations must be in writing. Please note that all cancellations will incur an administration fee. Please see our terms and conditions for details prior to booking.
50% cancellation fee for any cancellations within 24 hours of travel, or for passengers who fail to appear on the day of departure