This morning we continued to explore the Northeast coast of Australia. Our morning started with a 45 minute drive to the Daintree River. There we had a reservation for a 9:30 river cruise where we would look for crocodiles and other wildlife. I had booked this with Solar Whisper as that company had smaller boats and also had great reviews on TripAdvisor. Their website advised better viewings closer to low tide and hence we did a 9:30 tour.
I was not sure if we would see any crocodiles. I would have been happy to have just seen one. We saw several of various sizes. The first one we saw was a two year old crocodile. Next we saw a one year old crocodile. After that we saw a crocodile named "Eric" or "Erica" as they are not sure if it is a boy or a girl. They start naming the crocodiles when they reach about age six as before that age crocodiles are seen as prey, even to other crocodiles. We then saw the crocodile that dominates the area – Scarface. This was a huge crocodile. Crocodiles are territorial and one male usually dominates an area and forces other crocodiles out. Following our Scarface encounter we ended up seeing at least three more crocodiles. It was pretty exciting.
We also saw some beautiful birds, crabs, and tree frogs. The birds were various colors – some of them were Kingfishers, Yellow Bellied Sunbirds, Great Egrets, and several Herons. The birds and frogs were just as exciting as the crocodiles.
After the crocodile cruise we needed to cross the Daintree river. We had to take a very small auto ferry across the river. Fortunately we did not have to wait long for the ferry. It is a quick five minute ride and it just continues to go back-and-forth across the river. This ferry crossing is the only way to get up to the Cape Tribulation area so it plays an important role in the local area.
We proceeded to head towards our next destination. On our way there we briefly discussed cassowaries, large birds that are quite dangerous to humans. The kids asked if we would see one and I replied most likely we would not. Less than five minutes after saying this we spotted a cassowary crossing the road. I was able to snap a couple of pictures though they are not the best. The people in the cars in front of us though got out of their vehicles to take pictures. People are generally stupid. These birds can kill you with their claws and they can move quickly. Hence we stayed in our car for photos.
We continued on our journey. We eventually stopped at a little rainforest boardwalk that ended on a beach. While walking on the Dubuji boardwalk we saw a monitor lizard. It was pretty cool to see and very large. Once we reached the beach we saw several pieces of coral in the sand.
Following the boardwalk/beach bushwalk (as they call it here) we proceeded to Jungle Surfing. This is a company that takes you above the rainforest canopy and you zip-line on top of it and within it. The first three jumps you do tandem with a partner, and the last three jumps are by yourself. Everyone enjoyed it. There was also one jump where they encouraged you to go upside down.
Zip-lining ended around 4:30 and we promptly made our way back to our lodging before dark. I ended up making a taco dinner and then we all headed to bed.