Ah, holidays. They’re all about relaxing aren’t they? Having long, lazy lunches by the pool as you work your way through the cocktail list, romantic sunset strolls along palm lined beaches and, of course, staying in bed for that longed-after sleep in. Unless you’re holidaying in Tropical North Queensland that is.
One of the benefits of holidaying in Paradise (yep, the locals call it that too!) is how many activities, tours and adventures there are to choose from. You might have to set your alarm for some of them but trust me, the following five experiences are worth getting up early for.
1. Hot Air Ballooning
Yes the 4am pick up will feel painful, but all that will be forgotten once you lift off the ground in a hot air balloon. Watching the sun rise over North Queensland from 3,000 metres is an experience you’ll never forget. The upside to that early wake-up call is you’ll be home by 10am leaving you with plenty of time to nap by the pool before lunch.
2. Visit the Daintree Rainforest
Visit the world’s oldest rainforest (140 million years, thanks very much) and you’ll find yourself surrounded by history and botany all in one. The Daintree rainforest has gorges that are carved out of rock and dotted with clear swimming pools and enormous, towering trees. The rainforest looked looks just like it did when dinosaurs were the only visitors! Real life Jurassic Park? Totally worth a 7am pick up.
3. Discover the Atherton Tablelands
It’s hard to believe how many sights there are in such a small area, but if you want to see everything that the Atherton Tablelands has to offer you’d better be up at the crack of dawn. If you’re feeling sleepy then a quick dip in the cold waters of Malanda Falls will wake you up. Or how about a coffee from one of the many plantations? I’m sure a glimpse of a rare Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo will excite you too!
4. Cruise the Great Barrier Reef
Everyone knows the Great Barrier Reef is big, but the best parts are quite some distance from the coast. To make the most of your reef trip most reef operators start check in from 7.15am. Eeek! Yes you may feel tempted to snooze your alarm, but when you’re out there snorkelling with nemo’s galore you won’t have any regrets. An extra hour with the fish and coral of the Great Barrier Reef beats an extra hour in bed!
5. White Water Rafting on the Tully River
Did you know that the Tully River has the biggest rapids in Australia? Or that your adrenaline filled day will take you through pristine world heritage rainforest? Did you also know that it’s a two hour drive south of Cairns? Yep, sorry to break it to you guys but a full day rafting on the Tully River involves a 6.30am pick up. It also involves having some amazing fun, so don’t worry about your alarm – worry about how not to get flipped out of the raft…