Kuranda Rainforest Experience with Skyrail and Train
Do you want to see it all? This Kuranda Rainforest Experience is a must-do for everyone visiting Cairns. Not only will you get to travel on the Skyrail Cableway but also the Kuranda Scenic Rail. Spend some time exploring Indigenous culture and Native Australian Wildlife at Rainforestation. You will also get to play with the Butterflies at the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary.
Your Kuranda Rainforest Experience begins…
So, sit back and relax on the Kuranda Scenic Train. The Kuranda Railway began to be built in the 1880s. Tin miners in Herberton, west of Cairns, wanted an easier route to get supplies. The roads leading to the coast became muddy. And hard to travel due to the rain. Without a doubt, the construction of this railway was a huge deal at the time. Many lives were lost during the build. This included fifteen hand-built tunnels and 37 bridges.
When you arrive in Kuranda village, head through the village to the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Enjoy one hour of exploring the aviary and watch as these beautiful creatures flutter around. As a matter of fact, the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is the Southern Hemisphere’s largest butterfly flight aviary and exhibit. Home to around 1500 butterflies, the sanctuary is located in the heart of the village. This is only a short walk from the Skyrail & Train station in Kuranda, so you will be there in no time!
Soon enough you will meet your bus outside of the Butterfly Sanctuary. Join the 100% Electric Bus for your transfer across to the Rainforestation Nature Park. During your Kuranda Rainforest Experience, learn to throw a boomerang and cuddle a koala! Take part in an Aboriginal dance show and enjoy a ride on the Army Duck. Enjoy lunch while looking out over the beautiful lagoon.
The Army Duck
The DUKW (also known as Duck) is a six-wheel-drive amphibious version of the 2-ton CCKW vehicles used during WWII. Around the world, DUKWs and amphibious tour buses are still used for tourist travel.
There are twelve of these old autos in Rainforestation. Each has a 6-wheel driving system, a propeller, a rudder, and seats for up to 30 people. As you cruise by the rainforest, your expert Duck Captain will point out unique flora and fauna. Join a 45-minute rainforest tour before dipping into the lake for a cruise to see even more wildlife.
After your tour, you are welcome to explore the tropical fruit orchard. Here you may learn about over 60 tropical fruit trees.
Koala and Wildlife Park
The Koala and Wildlife Park allows guests to learn more Australian native species. Also, get right up close with them! You are free to spend as much time as you like roaming the Wildlife Park. There are many raised boardwalks that offer a great view of the area. Discover Australian creatures, reptiles, and the Kuranda Rainforest.
Look for the highly endangered cassowary and Lumholtz’s Tree Kangaroo. Meet Juliet, our clever wombat, and the rest of the native animals. Ricky, the playful Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo, may also be seen. The Reptile House is home to a wide range of pythons and lizards. Most importantly, don’t forget to see the Koalas!
Crocodile Feeding, Dingo Enrichment, and Macropod Feeding are just a few of the daily Wildlife Shows. Remember that your Wildlife Park admission includes unlimited re-entry on the day of your visit, so return as often as you like.
Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience
Rainforestation Nature Park conserves Indigenous Australian culture. You can learn about the Dreamtime and traditional customs in the Kuranda Rainforest. Learn how to throw a boomerang and even a spear!
The Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience includes a dance exhibit and a Dreamtime walk. The Pamagirri Dance Performance is held in a rainforest arena. Allow them to share a story about animals, food gathering, and hunting. In fact, they will tell the story with the didgeridoo and clapsticks. They will also show how didgeridoos are made and used in ceremonies. Take note of how they play this by creating animal noises such as kangaroos and kookaburras!
Make sure to keep an eye on the show. Because there is a surprise in store for the audience!
Skyrail Rainforest Experience
Sooner or later it will be time to start the trip home. After getting on your gondola, the Skyrail will take you back to Cairns.
The Skyrail links Cairns and Kuranda. As you head down the mountain, be blown away by stunning views of the ocean. Especially those you see when you look out over the UNESCO-listed Wet Tropics Rainforest canopy.
The Skyrail spans 7.5 kilometres across the Kuranda mountain. During your trip, you will come across two mid-stations: Red Peak and Barron Falls. These stations give you a lot of facts about this Rainforest. So, take a walk through this untouched Rainforest. Above all, you can learn about the local Flora and Fauna from the Guide leading the walks. After that, stop by the CSIRO Interpretation Station for more information!
Visiting the ‘The Edge’ look-out is certainly one of the best parts of this trip. The views from above the Barron Falls are amazing. These sacred falls are also known as Din Din. In fact, for many years, they have played a large role in Djabuganydji stories.
We suggest allowing for 1.5 hours of travel time. With this in mind, you will have plenty of time to enjoy the rail. Not to mention spending time at the two stations. There is no better way to wrap up your Kuranda Rainforest Experience!
Want more options?
While this tour covers it all, perhaps you might like to spend more time exploring the village? This tour is possible without the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. Take a look at the Kuranda Rainforestation with Train and Skyrail. Then you will have a bit more time to go into the markets and village.
On the other hand, do you want more? What if you could visit the Great Barrier Reef as well as Kuranda? Check out our Great Barrier Reef Experience and Kuranda Package.
- Return bus transfers from your Hotel.
- Kuranda Scenic Railway
- Australian Butterfly Sanctuary
- Army Duck and Tropical Orchard Tour
- Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience
- Koala and Wildlife Park
- Skyrail Rainforest Cableway
- 7.30 am – Pickup from your Cairns City Hotel
- 8:50 am – Travel on the Kuranda Scenic Railway.
- 10:25 am – Arrive at Kuranda.
- 11:00 am – Australian Butterfly Sanctuary.
- 11:45 am Meet outside the Butterfly Sanctuary for transfer to Rainforestation Nature Park.
- Army Duck Rainforest Tour.
- Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience.
- Koala and Wildlife Park.
- 3:00 pm – Transfer to Skyrail Rainforest Kuranda Terminal.
- 3:15 pm – Skyrail Journey from Kuranda to Cairns.
- 4:30 pm – Return transfer to your Cairns Hotel.
- One-Way Ticket on Kuranda Scenic Railway
- Admission to the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary
- Entry to Rainforestation Nature Park with the following:
- Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience
- Army Duck Rainforest Tour
- Koala & Wildlife Park
- Tropical Fruit Orchard
- Lunch at Rainforestation
- One-Way Ticket on Skyrail Rainforest Cableway
- Return Transfers to and from your Cairns City Hotel
- Upgrade to Diamond Class on Skyrail
- Upgrade to Gold Class on Kuranda Scenic Rail
What to bring
We suggest to bring the following:
- Hat, Sunscreen and Sunglasses
- Comfortable shoes
- Water bottle
- Cash/credit cards
How to get there
Hotel Pickup and Dropoff are included.
The Skyrail unfortunately does not operate every day. If the package is not available on your preferred day of travel, you can join a package that includes a Coach Transfer from Kuranda to Cairns in place of the Skyrail ticket.
While both the Skyrail and Train are Wheelchair accessible, please let us know at the time of booking if any mobility assistance is required.
While the Kuranda Village is quite small, there is a lot of walking involved. The main street is slightly inclined, but a low-moderate level of fitness will be able to move around with ease.