Shopping in Kuranda village Shopping in Kuranda village – Image courtesy of Queensland Rail Group


Ride the Kuranda Scenic Railway, the Skyrail Cableway or drive up to this pretty and atmospheric hilltop village, known for its daily markets and as the gateway to the Atherton Tablelands.

Take the free 30-minute guided tour and admire more than 1500 tropical butterflies at the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary, including the electric-blue Ulysses species and Australia's largest butterfly, the green-and-gold Cairns Birdwing.

At Birdworld, see the endangered cassowary and Australia’s Black Swan, and try to name some of the 500 or so birds from 75 species that fly freely in a giant aviary; more than 25 of them native to vanishing rain-forest areas.

The nearby Kuranda Koala Gardens offers the opportunity to cuddle koalas and see wallabies, wombats, snakes and crocodiles in open walk-through enclosures.

Take a 45-minute ride through the 40-hectare Rainforestation Nature Park in a World War II amphibious Army Duck. Listen to a commentary on orchids and other rainforest wildlife along the way. Afterwards, you can also see a performance by Aboriginal dancers, learn about Aboriginal legends and throw a boomerang on the Dreamtime Walk.

Later, enjoy shopping in Kuranda for leather goods, Australian-wool sweaters, opals and crafts. The town is easy to negotiate on foot; you can pick up a visitors' guide and map at the Skyrail station or the train station.

Contact Information

Location: Situated 34km (21mi) northwest of Cairns near the Barron Gorge National Park
Admission: Australian Butterfly Sanctuary A$18; Birdworld A$16.50; Kuranda Koala Gardens A$16.50; Rainforestation Nature Park A$42
Hours: Australian Butterfly Sanctuary daily 10am-4pm; Birdworld, Kuranda Koala Gardens and Rainforestation Nature Park daily 9am-4pm

More about Cairns…

Latest update: Kuranda: 30 March, 2021

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