Babinda Boulders; a huge reputation – does it deliver?

I’m always a bit apprehensive when we visit somewhere that has a massive reputation. We’ve experienced first hand how something that is talked up over and over again doesn’t always live up to the expectations, and I was very curious to see what Babinda Boulders was like.

Babinda Boulders has a big reputation, and is one of the very well known attractions in the northern part of Queensland. To put your mind at ease, this place is beyond incredible, and its so good that we detoured a substantial distance to come and check it out again, and to stay a night.

Babinda Boulders are stunning
The water at Babinda Boulders is nothing short of stunning
Babinda Boulders is beautiful
Spectacular beyond words

Where is Babinda Boulders?

You’ll find this beautiful place about 30 minutes north of Innesfail, or around an hour from Cairns.

Driving to Cairns
If you’re staying in Cairns its an easy day trip
Amazing views at Babinda
The drive in is really picturesque

What is at Babinda Boulders?

Most people know Babinda Boulders for its incredible swimming opportunities, and a picturesque creek system that will quite literally take your breath away (especially when you hop in!).

Looking out at Babinda Boulders
A quiet, and beautiful day at Babinda Boulders

There’s a number of toilets here, picnic areas, and a reasonable playground for the little ones. You can walk to Devils Pool along a bitumen (but fairly hilly) track, and there’s the Goldfields trail too.

Devils Pool Walk
You can walk to Devils Pool, which is stunning too
Looking out from Devils Pool Lookout
The views along the way and at the end are spectacular
Devils Pools views
What a ripper place

For most people though, the scenery here is the primary drive, and it does not disappoint at the main part of Babinda Boulders, with its crystal clear, and incredible coloured water. It is cold though, especially when you swim out further, but a swim is completely and utterly worth while.

The more time I spent looking around Babinda Boulders though, the more I fell in love with this place. Words don’t do it justice, with its beautiful, dark green water, stunning rocks and rainforest that is nothing short of amazing.

Walking to Devils Pool
The whole area is magic
Looking down from Babinda Boulders
The creek flowing down is magic

Watch for the Cassowaries

We saw a couple of Cassowaries here, and whilst they are probably more used to people than other places in the bush, you still want to have a lot of respect for these huge birds that would quite easily hurt you, or do worse. Leave them alone, keep a watch on what they are doing and back away if they are threatening towards you.

Cassowary in the wild
If you see a Cassowary, leave it alone and treat it with respect

You can camp for free here

If it were possible to get any better, the shire of Babinda have a great free camp literally a few hundred metres away, and its even got flushing toilets, and a couple of cold showers.

Camped at Babinda Boulders
The Babinda Boulders Free Camp

The camp ground is fairly small, and has about 10 official camp sites, but you can comfortably fit 2 bigger rigs on most of the sites, and this happens all the time. We knew this place would be busy, but that is an understatement. We arrived on a Monday morning, at about 11AM, and got one of the last, main spots. As the afternoon ticked along, more and more people drove through, with caravans, camper trailers, small vans and even tiny hatchbacks looking for a place to stay.

Free Camping at Babinda Boulders
The Babinda Boulders camping fills up super fast

Most people were pretty good and made room, until it was well and truly full. There were a lot of kids enjoying themselves and playing in the circle, and it was a pretty great place to camp.

Please know this was not on a weekend, and certainly not during school holidays, so expect it to be very, very busy.

Babinda Boulders Free Camping
The Babinda Boulders camp from above

72 hour stay limit

You are only allowed to stay here for 72 hours, and given the real attraction here is Babinda Boulder you don’t need more than that. We only spent one night, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Support Babinda

This place is unreal, and I can’t help but feel that Babinda need more credit for what they’ve done. If you can, make a point of supporting this small, but beautiful town; they’d be very appreciative, and its money well spent.

We were told that the Babinda Butcher was good, and stopped to pick up a few meals worth of meat, along with a stop at the Bakery, and the general store for some milk. The staff at all of the shops were extraordinarily friendly, and I can’t help but feel that everyone should be supporting this town. One Café was even selling breakfast for $10, which is unheard of!

Looking for more amazing places to see nearby?

If you’re keen to find other great places not too far away, have a look at the below posts:

Herberton Historic Village

Trevathan Falls

Lake Tinaroo

Chillagoe Caves

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