Visiting Palmerston safely
Getting there and getting around
Travel south along the Bruce Highway towards Innisfail. Turn right onto the Palmerston Highway 5km north of Innisfail (83km south of Cairns). The Palmerston Highway runs through the Palmerston (Doongan) section of Wooroonooran National Park. The northern side (right side) of the highway is well-developed for visitors, with easy access to the Mamu Tropical Skywalk (27km along the Palmerston Highway from the turn-off), Crawfords lookout (a further 1km from the Skywalk), Gooligans picnic area (4km from the Skywalk) and Henrietta Creek camping area (5km from the Skywalk).
From the Atherton and Evelyn tablelands
Travel to Millaa Millaa and follow the Palmerston Highway down the range towards Innisfail. Henrietta Creek camping area is 25km from Millaa Millaa and is located on the left side of the highway (northern side).
Linking to the Misty Mountains
The southern side of the Palmerston Highway is part of the Misty Mountains wilderness tracks. For access to the Misty Mountains, turn south off the Palmerston Highway on to K-tree Road. This unsealed road is on the opposite side of the highway to the Tchupala and Wallicher Falls walking track. South Johnstone camping area is 12.8km along this road.
The toilets at Henrietta Creek camping area are wheelchair-accessible.
- Never jump or dive into water—there may be submerged objects.
- Take care around steep slopes and rock faces along the tracks.
- Stay on the track and take care on uneven surfaces, especially in wet conditions and when walking near slippery rocks along streams and creeks.
- Do not attempt to cross strong flowing creeks and streams—flooding can occur during and after heavy or prolonged periods of rain.
- Protect yourself from the sun. Wear sunscreen, a hat and a long sleeved shirt, even on cloudy days.
- Carry adequate drinking water, enough to last you for your stay.
- Wear appropriate clothing and insect repellent for protection against stings, scratches and insect bites, especially bites from leeches and ticks. March flies are prevalent from September to December.
- Beware of stinging trees. They grow to 4m high and have large, heart-shaped leaves with serrated edges. Do not touch these plants as it will almost certainly result in a very painful sting. If you are stung and symptoms are severe, seek medical advice.
- Special care should be taken when driving on unsealed roads in the Misty Mountains.
For more information, please read the guidelines on safety in parks and forests.
Before you visit
Essentials to bring
To ensure a safe and enjoyable visit always bring:
- sturdy, reliable footwear
- a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, insect repellent and protective clothing for walking or cycling
- adequate drinking water
- rubbish bags.
Wooroonooran National Park is open 24 hours a day. Some walks may be closed during the wetter months, between October and May, because of flooding creeks. Roads in the Misty Mountains may be closed in periods of wet weather. Additional closures may occur for management purposes including pest plant and pest animal control— check for park alerts.
Permits and fees
Camping permits are required and fees apply. Your booking number must be displayed at your camp site.
If you intend conducting a commercial tour, wedding, school excursion or scientific research in Wooroonooran National Park, a permit may be required. See park permits and policies for further information.
Domestic animals are not permitted in Wooroonooran National Park.
Climate and weather
Wooroonooran National Park has a tropical climate. Daytime temperatures and humidity can be high at any time of the year and nights can be very cool. Visitors should carry clothing suitable for all extremes. August to September is generally the driest period, but heavy rain can fall at any time. The cooler months of the year, from April to September, with an average maximum temperature of 26°C, are the best times to visit.
For more information, see the tourism information links.
Weather forecasts are available from the Bureau of Meteorology.
Fuel and supplies
Fuel and supplies are available from local towns including Cairns, Innisfail, Millaa Millaa, Malanda and Atherton. For more information, see the tourism information links.
- Temporary road closure: Bora Ground and Malaan roads, Wooroonooran National Park 23 March to 1 August 2023
- Temporary road and camping area closure: K-Tree Road, Maple Creek Road and South Johnstone camping area. Temporary partial road closure: Sutties Gap Road, Misty Mountains, Wooroonooran National Park 12 May to 30 September 2023