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“Very peaceful”

Mareeba Tropical Savannah and Wetland Reserve
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Chillagoe Caves and Outback Day Trip from Cairns
Ranked #5 of 15 things to do in Mareeba
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Reviewed December 16, 2012

I visited here with a group of cub scouts & we all did the boat trip which was relaxing and interesting. The guide was full of knowledge. We also walked around the lake, an easy walk for about an hour. If you are into nature, especially bird watching, this is the place for you.

1  Thank MarjS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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77 - 81 of 83 reviews

Reviewed June 21, 2012

We liked the walk around the lagoon, saw several nice birds. Great view from the visitor center over the lagoon. Very interesting and quiet cruise with a boat with electric engine on the lagoon with comentary of Neil about flora and fauna in and around the lagoon.

2  Thank ReBiPa
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Reviewed November 19, 2009

At Biboohra, west of Mareeba on the Atherton Tablelands, down a dusty dirt road (one with some sharp dips for the creeks), we came upon a beautiful wooden chalet situated on the edge of a lake. This lake, along with a larger lake a few kilometres away, are surround by open woodland and savannah that belong to a nature reserve. The chalet, however, is a commercial enterprise dedicated to wildlife viewing, particularly birds. A personable guide, nicknamed "Chook", was present and he immediately drew us over to view an Emu male and his six chicks. This male was treading warily since his former mate was stalking around nearby, booming occasionally (yes, Emus can make a big noise).

Chook explained that it was free to visit the lodge and spot birds from its long deck (and look over its displays, buy coffee or lunch, or buy books and maps) but $10 per person to walk any of the trails. There are four of these trails of varying lengths, and we chose the longest, about 6 km return to the other lake, and the shortest, a pleasant walk on the dikes around the lake in front of the chalet. Given the length of the trails and the harshness of the environment, Chook asks all walkers to sign in before heading out on a trail.

At the chalet, but especially on the trails, our occasional sightings were extremely rewarding: a noisy flock of Grey-crowned Babblers had us guessing their identity for a long time. Lone blue Forest Kingfishers stood sentinel along the lake edges. Square-tailed and Black Kites drifted by in the distance. We flushed some Brown Quail from the grass. On the lakes, big Black Swans drifted about accompanied by ducks and Magpie Geese. The Brolgas (a crane) apparently spent the days in nearby fields and returned to the lakes only at dusk. Unfortunately, there were also a few cattle around, which the reserve managers apparently allow to graze part of the reserve in order to pay the bills. An intriguing surprise, encountered just of a trail not far from the chalet, was a giant stainless steel sculpture of a lizard. This donation from an environmentally conscious Japanese artist is worthy of a plinth on the Cairns Esplanade, but there it was in the bush.

At the primitive bird blind at the other lake, I heard the Laughing Kookaburra, the bird I came to Australia to see AND hear. What a wonderful sound! On the way back, we glimpsed the incredible crimson wings of a flock of Rainbow Bee Eaters. For these rewards, we had to walk a long way through the open bush, which was blistering hot and parched. A good hat, not just any hat, is essential. Between the birds, the variety of the landscape and its oddities such as dry gullies and the massive Spinifex Termite mounds made our visit here more than worthwhile.

5  Thank NW_Raven
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Reviewed August 4, 2016 via mobile
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Thank Bas S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 4, 2013
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Thank よっしーヨシ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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