Visiting Davies Creek, Dinden and Bare Hill safely
Getting there and getting around
Davies Creek and Dinden national parks, Dinden West Forest Reserve and Bare Hill Conservation Park are on the Atherton Tableland. From Cairns, travel towards Kuranda via the Kennedy Highway.
- Tablelands parks and forests (north) map
- Davies Creek and Dinden national parks, Dinden Forest Reserve and Bare Hill Conservation Park map
Davies Creek National Park (Lower Davies Creek camping area and Davies Creek Falls circuit track)
After passing the Kuranda turn-off, travel a further 21km before turning left on to Davies Creek Road. This gravel road is corrugated and unsuitable for caravans. Follow Davies Creek Road for 6.2km to reach Lower Davies Creek camping area. Davies Creek Falls circuit track is 2km past the camping area. For most of the year this section of unsealed road is accessible to conventional vehicles. However, the road is corrugated and unsuitable for caravans and large motorhomes. Vehicles cannot be driven onto the Lower Davies Creek camping area camp sites beside the creek—it is necessary to park in one of the car parking areas and walk a short distance to these camp sites.
Dinden National Park (Upper Davies Creek camping area, Turtle Rock circuit trail and Kahlpahlim Rock trail)
Upper Davies Creek camping area is on Davies Creek, 10km along Davies Creek Road—3.8km past Lower Davies Creek camping area. Four-wheel-drive vehicles are recommended.
Between camp sites 3 and 4 is the start of the Turtle Rock circuit trail. Continue driving along Davies Creek Road, past camp sites 5 and 6, to reach the start of the Kahlpahlim Rock (Lambs Head) trail. Continue along Davies Creek Road to camp sites 7 and 8.
Bare Hill Conservation Park (Bunda Bibandji rock art walking track)
Follow Davies Creek Road for 2.5km and turn left down Bridle Creek Road. Access is only possible by four-wheel-drive vehicles. Follow Bridle Creek Road for 5km to the signposted turn-off to Bunda Bibandji rock art walking track.
Roads within Davies Creek and Dinden national parks may be closed in the wet season (December to April) due to flooding or after heavy rain for maintenance. Visit the Bureau of Meteorology for updated weather reports.
Dinden National Park (Clohesy River Road and fig tree boardwalk)
Also within Dinden National Park, enjoy the scenic drive along Clohesy River Road and walk the Clohesy River fig tree boardwalk. Clohesy River Road is accessed from the Kennedy Highway (9km north east of the intersection with Davies Creek Road or 10km south west of Kuranda turn-off). Access is only by four-wheel-drive vehicles and the creek crossings may be impassable after rain. All vehicles must be road registered.
Dinden West Forest Reserve (Emerald Creek Falls)
From Cairns, take the Kennedy Highway towards Mareeba (60km). Just 3km before Mareeba turn left onto the signposted Tinaroo Creek Road. Follow Tinaroo Creek Road for about 3km and then turn left into Cobra Road. After 2km of bitumen the road is unsealed for the final 6km. This road is steep in places and can be boggy when wet. It is unsuitable for caravans and trailers.
The toilets at the Lower Davies Creek camping area in Davies Creek National Park are wheelchair-accessible. The Clohesy River fig tree boardwalk in Dinden National Park is wheelchair-accessible.
- Stay behind the barriers at Davies Creek Falls and Emerald Creek Falls at all times—deaths have occurred here.
- Be careful at creek crossings—water levels in the creeks can change rapidly and without warning.
- Take care when walking near the creek—creek beds and rock surfaces can be slippery.
- Stay clear of cliff edges and steep rock faces—serious injury or death may result from a fall.
- Never jump or dive into the water—the creeks are shallow and there may be submerged objects.
- Carry plenty of drinking water.
- Protect yourself from the sun. Wear a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen and a long-sleeved shirt, even on cloudy days.
- Be prepared for cool weather in winter and at the top of Kahlpahlim Rock.
For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.
Before you visit
Essentials to bring
To ensure you have a safe and enjoyable visit, make sure you pack:
- a first-aid kit
- a hat, sunscreen and sunglasses
- gas or fuel stove
- firewood (firewood must not be collected from the national parks)
- drinking water
- food storage containers
- rubbish bags
- insect repellent.
Davies Creek and Dinden national parks, Dinden West Forest Reserve and Bare Hill Conservation Park are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The parks are occasionally closed during wet weather or for other management purposes.
Permits and fees
Special permits are required for commercial or organised events. View permits and fees for further information.
Water reserve permits
Locked gates at the eastern end of Clohesy River Road prevent vehicle access to the Cairns Regional Council water reserve. To access the water reserve by bicycle or on foot, a permit from Cairns Regional Council is required.
Camping permits are required and fees apply. A camping tag with your booking number must be displayed at your camp site.
- Find out more about camping at Davies Creek and Dinden national parks.
Dinden and Davies Creek national parks – domestic animals not permitted.
Bare Hill Conservation Park – domestic animals not permitted.
Dinden West Forest Reserve (Emerald Creek Falls) – dogs are allowed, but must be on a leash and under control at all times.
Climate and weather
Davies Creek and Dinden national parks, Dinden West Forest Reserve and Bare Hill Conservation Park are pleasant year-round; however, the drier, cooler months of May to November are the best time to visit. Davies Creek has cool rock pools to swim in or camp beside. Remember heavy rainfall can occur at any time. After rain the roads can be boggy and swimming in the creek can be dangerous due to the higher flow of water.
Weather forecasts are available from the Bureau of Meteorology. For more information, see the tourism information links.
Fuel and supplies
Fuel and supplies are available at Mareeba, Atherton and Kuranda. For more information, see the tourism information links.
- Temporary partial road closure: Clohesy River Road, Dinden National Park 31 March to 30 August 2023