Darwin or bust - a short drive up the road travel blog

The Lion's Den at Helenvale on the Bloomfield Track

No alcohol allowed into Wujal Wujal

Bloomfield Waterfall near Wujal Wujal

A humpy at Wujal Wujal

Main street of Cooktown

Stunning mangrove at Finch Bay near Cooktown

Sunset over the Coral Sea

Monument to Captain Cook

Archer Point - at low tide you can walk out to the...

We drove up to Cooktown via the Bloomfield track. 4WD is recommended as there are some creek crossings and some very steep ascents and descents of up to 31%. There were lots of potholes and some corrugations, not much fun to drive over.

At the Aboriginal community at Wujal Wujal we noted that there are very stiff penalties for bringing alcohol into the community. We walked the trail to the Bloomfield falls, swimming is not advised due to the possibility of crocodiles. We did see something on a large rock, to our relief it was only a huge monitor lizard sunning itself.

We stopped for a drink at the Lions Den Hotel, a very iconic pub at Helenvale built in 1875. Loads of graffiti covering the corrugated-iron walls.

We spent two nights in Cooktown and everyone we met was very friendly. The town has a very laid-back atmosphere and they hold a little farmer's market on Saturday mornings which was certainly the place to be.

Cook's Landing fish shop feeds gigantic gropers and stingrays off the jetty at dusk which was very popular for tourists and locals alike. These sea creatures are huge and the gropers are particularly vicious.

There are lots of historic buildings and monuments around town which we visited and of an evening the blood red sunsets over the Coral Sea were mesmerising.

The floral emblem of Queensland is the Cooktown Orchid and though we visited both the Botanic Gardens and the local nursery none of the plants were in flower. Cooktown is as far north as we can go on the east coast without a proper 4WD.

On our drive out of Cooktown we took a detour to Archer Point. We'd read that at low tide you can walk out to the Great Barrier Reef, unfortunately or fortunately for us we missed low tide - why fortunately, well because low tide or high tide you always have to watch out for crocodiles!

We've seen so much stunning coast, countless sandy beaches and seaside towns. All very, very lovely.

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