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Visiting Mossman Gorge safely
New access to Mossman Gorge
Access to the Mossman Gorge day-use area is via shuttle buses from the Mossman Gorge Centre. For more information visit Mossman Gorge Centre—fees may apply.
From Cairns, travel north for 80 km along the Cook Highway to Mossman. Before reaching the town centre, turn left into Johnston Road and continue for 2 km to the Mossman Gorge Centre. Electric shuttle buses operate daily from here—every 15 mins from 8 am–6 pm—transporting visitors the final 2 km into the park. Fees may apply. The shuttle bus service is free for local residents including school groups from the Mossman, Daintree and Port Douglas area.
Visitors can walk or cycle to the park at any time at no cost.
Visitors in private vehicles can access the park before 8 am and after 6 pm. Please drive slowly and with particular care when passing the Mossman Gorge Aboriginal community. Caravans and large campervans are not recommended on the narrow road beyond the Mossman Gorge Centre.
For more information see the tourism information links.
The shuttle bus, picnic area, toilets and the rainforest boardwalk Baral Marrjanga, which leads from the car park to the Mossman River lookout, are all wheelchair accessible.
Swimming at Mossman Gorge at any time can be dangerous. People have died here and others have been seriously injured.
- Water conditions are unpredictable.
- Water levels can rise rapidly and without warning.
- Strong currents, deep water and submerged boulders make this river dangerous to enter.
- Do not jump or dive into the river.
- To stay safe, do not swim.
- Read water safety for important information about staying safe in and near water and caring for parks.
Wear suitable footwear for walking in Mossman Gorge as track surfaces can be uneven.
Please slow down when driving through cassowary habitat and watch out for cassowaries and their chicks at the roadside.Be cass-o-wary!
Stinging trees are found occasionally alongside walking tracks in Mossman Gorge. They grow approximately 3–4 m high and have large, heart-shaped leaves with serrated edges. Do not touch these plants as this will almost certainly result in a very painful sting. If you are stung and symptoms are severe, seek medical advice.
Do not leave cars unattended overnight as they could be vandalised.
If you intend to hike within the park beyond the rainforest circuit track, you must discuss your plans with park staff. Remember to tell a responsible person where you are going and when you expect to return. Let them know your route and contact them on your return. Have a contingency plan in place if you fail to contact them by the agreed time. If you change your plans, inform them.
For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.
Essentials to bring
Bring sturdy shoes for walking. It is also advisable to bring insect repellant and sunscreen, a hat and clothes for protection from the sun.
Mossman Gorge is open 24 hrs a day, however, private vehicles are not permitted in the park from 8 am to 6 pm daily.
Permits and fees
A fee may apply for the shuttle bus that provides access into the park from 8 am to 6 pm daily. See Mossman Gorge Centre for details.
Commercial operators charge fees for guided tours and walks. See tourism information links.
If camping in the remote section of the park, a permit must be purchased from Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, Mossman and fees apply. A tag with your booking number must be displayed at your camp site. It is essential to discuss your plans in person with ranger staff.
Permits are required for commercial or organised group activities. Contact us for further information.
Domestic animals are not permitted in Daintree National Park.
Climate and weather
The Mossman region has one of the wettest climates in Australia. During the wetter months, from December to April, there are heavy, frequent downpours. Some areas receive more than 6 m of rain annually. Maximum temperatures through the wetter months range from 27 °C to 33 °C, with humidity often exceeding 80 per cent.
The cooler, drier months, from May to September, are the best time to visit. The weather is pleasantly warm with reduced humidity. Maximum temperatures average 26 °C.
Fuel and supplies
Fuel and supplies are available at various locations in Cairns, Port Douglas and Mossman.