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Things to do
Camping is not permitted in Undara Volcanic National Park.
There is a range of holiday accommodation at Undara Experience and in and around Ravenshoe, Mount Surprise and Mount Garnet.
For more information and contact details, see the tourism information links.
Undara Volcanic National Park offers a range of walking opportunities ranging from 2.5km to 12km return. Be realistic about your walking abilities and ensure you chose a track that suits your skills.
Each track is classified according to its most difficult section although other sections may be of an easier level.
There are also a number of easy grade walking tracks accessible from Undara Experience.
|Grade 3||Suitable for most ages and fitness levels. Some bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may have short steep hill sections, a rough surface and many steps. Walks up to 20km.|
|Grade 4||Bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may be long, rough and very steep. Directional signs may be limited.|
Kalkani Crater rim walk
Distance: 2.5km return
Time: allow 1.5hr walking time
Details: Starting from the Kalkani day-use area, this self-guided walk climbs to the saddle of the Kalkani Crater and around the eggcup-shaped rim. Enjoy the views across the lava plains to other volcanic vents. Look for the distinctively darker vine thicket following the lava flow from Undara Crater. Signs on this track explain the explosive geology of the area, including the origins of the variety of volcanoes seen from the walk. Mountain bikes are not permitted on this track.
Atkinsons lookout trail
Distance: 3.8km return
Time: allow 1.5hr walking time
Details: This trail is primarily a walking trail although mountain bikes are permitted. Starting at Undara Experience, this shared trail passes up and over a small granite knoll before gently descending to Iron Pot Creek, which is usually dry in winter. After crossing the creek, the trail climbs west for a short distance towards a second ridge. The trail then turns south and passes through small boulders onto a large south-easterly facing granite slab, known as Atkinsons lookout. The lookout has great views south to The Granites and Racecourse Hill—the highest shield volcanic cone in the park. Walkers can return the way they came or continue on to the Rosella Plain lookout trail (details below).
Rosella Plains lookout trail
Time: allow 4–6hr walking time
Details: This trail is primarily a walking trail although mountain bikes are permitted. Starting from Undara Experience, this trail can be walked in either direction—although the clockwise direction is recommended. Walkers continue on from the Atkinsons lookout trail, or walk in a clockwise direction from Undara Experience.
Walking clockwise from Undara Experience, the first 3km of this trail follows a section of the old telegraph line from Cardwell to Normanton. Original telegraph poles and a replica of a settler’s hut can be seen. Information signs along the way introduce the lifestyle of 19th century pioneers in the area.
From the hut, the trail continues in a south westerly direction along the lowlands before the short, steep “Cardiac Climb” to Jump Up lookout.
The trail then winds through beautiful granite country with volcanic vistas. Look for the red-flowering native rosella bushes Hibiscus heterophyllus, bright yellow flowers of the kapok tree Cochlospermum gillivraei, and the distinctive, spreading crown of dark green rounded leaves, belonging to the Cooktown ironwood Erythrophleum chlorostachys.
The most westerly point of this walk is Rosella Plains lookout with fantastic views of the province. From the lookout, walkers can return the way they came, or continue for another 6 km to complete the loop, via the Atkinsons lookout trail, to Undara Experience.
Signs along the track introduce natural and cultural values of the area, including the geology of the landscape, a variety of plants and animals, and the way-of-life of the area’s Traditional Owners. This track is steep and rocky in some places and walking boots and gaiters are recommended.
For more bushwalking opportunities in the area, visit Undara Experience.
Guided tours and talks
Access to the lava tubes is by guided tour only and several tours are offered.
Picnic and day-use areas
The Kalkani day-use area, about 17km from Undara Experience, has toilets, picnic tables and access to the Kalkani Crater rim walk.
The caves within this park are home to thousands of insectivorous bats. At dusk, these bats create a spectacular display as they flock from their dark roosts. Spotted pythons Antaresia maculosa and other predators will often position themselves at the cave’s entrance to catch the exiting bats.
See the description of the park's natural environment for more details about Undara's diverse wildlife.
- Visitor update, accomodation and tours: Undara Volcanic National Park 1 November 2020 to 21 March 2021