Cairns is Australia’s number one tropical adventure hub. Located in Far North Queensland on the footsteps of both the Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef, this incredible slice of paradise has more than its fair share of breathtaking nature and adrenaline-pumping adventure activities.
If you’re visiting Cairns, one of the best, half-day adventure tours is this White Water Rafting trip on the Barron River.
My name is Olly and I run the adventure travel blog We Seek Travel. I recently booked this epic Cairns white water rafting experience with Backpacker Deals. In this post, I’ll share with you my experience and photos from this epic trip to help you prepare for what to expect!
What to Expect on a White Water Rafting Trip in Cairns
This awesome white water rafting trip includes two hours of rafting led by professional guides down grade 3 rapids. What I loved about this tour is that it’s suitable for both beginners and experienced rafters.
Included in the tour is:
- Hotel pickup/drop-off in Cairns or Northern Beaches
- 2 hours of white water rafting
- Incredible views of the Barron Gorge
- All safety equipment
- Instruction and training by professional and certified river guides
White Water Rafting on the Barron River Rapids
After donning our life jackets, helmets and paddles, Andy, our professional guide ran us through the safety briefings and instructed us how to work together to rush down the gorge.
Luckily for us, we had a decent amount of flow, which meant bigger rapids and overall a more thrilling experience. Andy showed us how to paddle and manoeuvre the raft through large waves, broken water and strong eddies.
Our boat was quite confident, so we tackled some of the bigger rapids sideways, backwards and bouncing off large boulders!
Of course, this section of the Barron River isn’t always fierce. There were some relaxing sections where we all jumped off into the warm tropical waters and floated alongside the boat.
This epic white water rafting tour gave us the best of both worlds– heart racing thrills and a relaxing scenic float.
The Barron Gorge
This region is one of the most scenic you’ll find near Cairns. Dense, tropical rainforest vegetation drapes down from the towering cliffs into a deep, rich river. Rainforest birds fly above the pristine fresh waters off the Barron River below, which gently flows towards the Coral Sea– that is, until they release the floodgates!
The trip starts from the top of the Barron River, near the hydroelectric power station. Consequently, this station dams accumulated freshwater and releases it daily. This is when the excitement really begins! It also allows for this trip to run year-round, even in the dry season!
You’ll find that the larger drops and stronger rapids are found further upstream. The last leg of the activity is a gentle paddle back down to Lake Placid, where it’s possible to spot rainforest birds, harmless freshwater crocodiles, turtles and possibly even a Cassowary!
Are you still here reading? What are you waiting for? This trip is a definite must-do in Cairns for adventurer travellers and being so close to Cairns, I couldn’t think of a reason not to! Book them here.
Looking for other things to do in Cairns? Here are our most recommended activities: