Mount Garnet is an old mining town located in the Atherton Tablelands just outside of Cairns. Initially relying on its deposits of copper, the town unfortunately after just a few years, fell prey to the plummeting world prices of copper and the mining company pulled out of Mount Garnet. The miners however, chose to stay and built a thriving industry excavating tin.
These days, attention has turned to zinc and silica, which are extracted just outside the town. The area around Mount Garnet is still renowned as a worthwhile location for gold prospectors and gem collectors. The town is a good base to explore the Mount Gibson topaz fossicking area, five kilometers northwest of Innot Hot Springs. You will however require a fossicking licence. Licences can be obtained at the Mobil Store/Hot Springs Health Waters, in Innot Hot Springs.
The Wurruma Swamp, just east of Mount Garnet, is one of the wonders of the area, and is a favourite with birdwatchers. At certain times of the year the swamp is home to literally thousands of black swans.
Mount Garnet has a supermarket, newsagent, chemist, banking facilities, two fuel outlets, hotel, roadhouse, motel and small shops, as well as police and an ambulance service.
Continuing west from Mount Garnet for approximately 1.5 hours, the Kennedy Highway will bring you to the amazing Undara Lava tubes, near Mount Surprise. This is truly one of the region's prehistoric treasures, the largest and longest lava tube system on the planet, with a lava field that extended up to 160 kilometres from the crater.
Besides the popular Millstream Falls and Tully Falls, which belong to the popular Waterfall Circuit, visitors will also enjoy:
Little Millstream Falls are a delightful series of falls cascading into a small lagoon. Approx half hour walk each way. From Ravenshoe, go to Tully Falls Road, turn onto Wooroora Road 1.25 kilometers on the right.
To get to Pepina Falls just follow signs from Old Palmerston Highway between Ravenshoe and Millaa Millaa. They are a good spot to see a platypus, mostly early morning and late afternoon.
To get to Souita Falls, from Old Palmerston Highway Ravenshoe to Millaa Millaa turn onto Middlebrook Road. The falls are fantastic for birdwatching and platypus spotting in the pool at the base of the falls.
At the end of Tully falls Road is Lake Koombooloomba, a hydro-electric water storage facilities which doubles as a recreational area for fishing and watersports. There is good barramundi fishing in the dam all year, and you can camp, swim and fish in the peace and quiet of the forest.
This is one of the few inland dry rainforest remnants in north Queensland. Camping is not permitted, but it's a pleasant spot for a picnic or a short walk. Toilet facilities and sheltered picnic tables are provided in the day use area beside the Kennedy Highway. For more information about this park, please visit our TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND'S NATIONAL PARKS page.
The Undara Volcano is just one of over 160 volcanoes, vents and cones within the McBride volcanic province. Undara is significant because of the huge lava flow that formed the largest and longest lava tube system on the planet. The lava field extends 90 kilometres to the north and 160 kilometres to the north-west of the crater! Guided tours of the caves are available, and accommodation is in the nearby Lava Lodge, your choice of luxuriously renovated vintage railway carriages, on-site tents, or campsites. For more information about this park, please visit our UNDARA page.
Situated on the Atherton Tablelands, are Australia's widest single-drop waterfall.
Millstream Falls is reputedly Australia's widest single-drop waterfall. The park is an open forest of towering bloodwoods and stringybark trees, and is part of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. Toilets, a shelter shed, picnic tables, wood barbecues and tank water are provided. Camping is not allowed in the park.
Conducted annually next to Ozera Lake near Mt Garnet on Atherton Tableland. this is a very original event with many market stalls, unusual sights and much music.
The cottage's facilities are complete and excellent. Location is easy to find and it is near to the town centre. BIG4 Atherton was one of the best..
We were very impressed with the cleanliness and standard of the Cottages. Nice quiet Park...
The cleanest and organised camp group we have ever stayed in. Great... will recommend to others. Thank you for a wonderful holiday experience..