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How Many Days Do You Need In The Daintree Rainforest?

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Gabby Boucher
Updated Wed 10 Jan 2024

2 days is a good amount of time to experience the magic of the Daintree Rainforest. Of course, more time is always better, and you can never run out of things to do in the oldest rainforest on the planet! But realistically, most travelers only have a few days to spare for different attractions, so 2 days in the Daintree is a great place to start. 

girls walking in the forest

How To Get To The Daintree Rainforest

There are two main ways to get to the Daintree Rainforest: driving yourself or booking a guided tour. If you’re driving yourself, you can fly into Cairns and rent a car or a campervan in the city. The drive from Cairns to the Daintree is very straightforward! Just head up the scenic Captain Cook Highway along the Queensland Coast, cross the Daintree Ferry, and explore the rainforest how you choose. 

A guided tour is the easiest way to access the Daintree. Your experienced local guides will pick you up from your accommodation in Cairns and drive you to the rainforest. After spending 1 or 2 days experiencing the highlights of the mystical tropical area, you will be transported back to Cairns

girls in a campervan

How Many Days Do You Need In The Daintree Rainforest?

Many people visit the Daintree Rainforest as a day trip, but spending at least 2 days there gives you more time to explore! There is so much natural beauty and ancient culture packed into this otherworldly place, so it is definitely worth spending at least 2 days and 1 night in the Daintree Rainforest

A fun fact about the Daintree Rainforest: it’s right next to the Great Barrier Reef! This unique location in the northeast of Australia is where the two spectacular World Heritage Sites meet. So if you spend 3 or more days in the Daintree, you can dedicate one of those days to snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef! You really need a full day on the reef, so even if you’re only spending 2 days in the Daintree, make sure you visit the reef from Cairns after your rainforest trip. 

Snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef

How To Spend 2 Days In The Daintree Rainforest

If you’re planning to spend 2 days in the Daintree Rainforest, there is a wealth of activities you can choose from. From rainforest walks, to zip-lining, to visiting local cafes and ice cream shops, you will never be bored in the Daintree! The Daintree Discovery Center is a good place to start if you’re self-driving and you’re not sure what to do first. 

Most people who visit the Daintree end their journey north at Cape Tribulation. This tiny tourist town surrounded by the power of the jungle has some top-rated accommodations and activities you can do. Go horseback riding on the beach, hike Mount Sorrow, visit Kulki Lookout, stroll on the deserted Myall Beach, learn about local ecosystems at the Dubuji Boardwalk, or book an Ocean Safari out to the Great Barrier Reef! You need a 4WD to continue north past Cape Tribulation, so guided tours and most self-drive itineraries head back to Cairns after enjoying Cape Tribulation. 

girl holding ice cream

The Best Daintree Rainforest Tour

A 2-day, 1-night Daintree tour takes away the hassle of having to plan your own itinerary! Your local guides will take you to all the best lookouts, walking trails, and eateries. Most tours also include a Wildlife River Cruise where you can spot some magnificent saltwater crocodiles in their natural habitat! You’ll also have the opportunity to visit Mossman Gorge, a peaceful and beautiful river and gorge where you can learn about the treasured Aboriginal culture and heritage. 

girls walking on bridge

Can You Visit The Daintree Rainforest In One Day?

If you only have 1 free day and you’re wondering if it’s still worth visiting the Daintree Rainforest, the answer is yes! Day trips to the Daintree are very common, and you can still enjoy the wonders of the jungle in just a quick day trip. Most day trips to the Daintree leave from Cairns or Port Douglas and include your ferry transfers and lunch. 

One day in the Daintree Rainforest still allows you to go on a crocodile-spotting river cruise, visit various scenic lookouts, and go on guided rainforest walks. Just breathing in that thick, humid, rainforest air and listening to the hum of cicadas and the music of rainforest birds is enough to give you a sense of how enchanting this place really is. So even though 1 day is short, it’s still worth visiting the Daintree!

girl taking photos of trees

Check out our 1-day tours and 2-day tours to the Daintree Rainforest!

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