This is the book I needed 20 years ago when Dave Bristow and I – fresh off the plane from Ko Pha-Ngan – threw our backpacks into the boot of our tiny Charade hatchback and fled north to the Daintree. Deep in the rainforest, we rockhopped up silvery creeks in search of cassowaries and tree-kangaroos, and dreamed of building a treehouse way off the grid.
We bought $300 bikes and cycled the Bloomfield Track, hiked our way to Cedar Bay’s historical, hippy utopia, shared sodden wet season camps with feral pigs and ferocious leeches, and sea kayaked with crocodiles.
Cash-poor and curious, our adventures were fuelled by immense wanderlust, and funded by a handful of editors who legistimised our crazy roaming by actually paying us. 20 years on, we are still writing about our wild, tropical home, and it continues to surprise us with new, mind-blowing discoveries.
Whittling down our Top 100 for this latest travel guide took more than a few beers around the campfire, but by the time it was done and dusted, we’d managed to sneak in about 200.
These are the places we return to again and again – unique, distinctly tropical, and bound to bring a smile to every tropical traveller.