Cairns rental cars know there’s so much to see and do, it can be difficult to know where to start. So why not visit some of our favorite local waterfalls. Or come and explore our wonderful World heritage Rainforests at the same time?
Just under a 20-minute drive in your Cairns hire car along the Cairns Western Arterial Road brings you to Lake Placid. With its crystal clear water, it's located in the lower reaches of the Barron River. This is an amazing part of our country and within easy distance of Cairns CBD. An interesting point is that it’s not a lake but a broad stretch of the Barron River. It's surrounded by mountains and untouched rainforests.
Although swimming or fishing isn’t recommended at Lake Placid due to an occasional report of crocodiles in the area, it’s a fabulous spot for a BBQ (there are free BBQs on site) and there are plenty of walking tracks. There’s also the Lake Placid Rainforest Retreat which is a pet-friendly and kid-friendly caravan park.
From Lake Placid, it’s just a 6-minute drive in your Cairns rental cars along Stoney Creek Rd to Stoney Creek & Old Weir Falls. Stoney Creek has numerous beautiful swimming holes. Once you’ve parked your hire car it’s just a short walk to the creek. Here you can take your first swim under the bridge that crosses the creek.
When you follow this track over the bridge you’ll find some fabulous private swimming holes along the way. If you're up for more of an adventure, it's a 25 minutes of walk to Old Weir Falls. If you want a quick dip then just stay at Stoney Creek and swim under the bridge. But if you want to stretch your legs then Old Weir Falls is calling!
The locals love this place, so if you’re visiting during the summer, try and get here during the week.
If you’re starting from Stoney Creek, you need to head south in your Cairns hire car. Heading along the Redlynch Intake Rd for 20 minutes, you'll reach the Crystal Cascades. Fairy Falls is a local gem that’s hidden away behind the pools at the Crystal Cascades. If you don’t know it’s there, you’ll miss a wonderful experience.
So park your Cairns rental cars in the carpark at and look for a trail on the left side of the carpark. Walk for no more than 10 mins and then continue following this trail. It then bends left and goes along the creek. You’ll soon reach a deep pool where you’ll find Fairy Falls. It’s a great place to cool off after a hot day hiking!
If you’re starting from Stoney Creek in your Cairns rental cars, then you need to head northwest along the Barron Gorge Rd. Approximately 15 minutes later, you'll reach the Barron Gorge Hydroelectric Power Station. The station takes water from the Barron River to make hydroelectric power and then returns this water to the river. It was built in 1935 and was Australia’s first underground power station.
You can also reach the power station by taking a 3km scenic walk. It winds along Barron Gorge Road from Lake Placid if you’re happy to stretch your legs. There’s a bridge across the river that leads to the Power Station giving you spectacular views of the river. You might also want to check out Surprise Creek Falls which cascades nearly 250m into the gorge. This one is located not far from the Hydro Station.
Din Din Falls is one of the largest waterfalls near Cairns with a 250 m drop into the Barron River. It starts in the rainforests of Mount Hypipamee and winds 60 km across the Atherton Tablelands. She then cascades into the Barron Gorge and flowing into the Coral Sea.
If you’re starting from the hydroelectric Station then it’s a 35-minute drive back into the outer suburbs of Cairns along Barron Gorge Rd and National HWY 1, then a left turn onto Fallon Road in Kuranda and this takes you to Barron Falls.
Barron Falls is located in the Barron Gorge National Park and the Barron Falls Lookout is one of the best ways to view these falls. It’s just a short 250m walk from the carpark (where you left your Cairns rental cars), along a boarded walkway through the fabulous World Heritage rainforest canopy.
The best time to visit Barron Falls is during the rainy season from December to March as the sight of these falls in full flood is spectacular!
For more information on scenic drives around Cairns in your rental car, don’t hesitate to call us on 0447 809 899 or BOOK ONLINE today.