World Class Skiing and World Heritage Listed Attractions

Updated: Mar 21, 2019

A few months ago I travelled to Cairns, Queensland, Australia to explore the World Heritage Listed Daintree Rainforest and the world famous Great Barrier Reef. Fast forward to today, and I am still here. What has kept me hanging around is the unreal water skiing and the scenery is some of the best I have seen in the world. Let me tell you more about this awesome part of the world.

So let’s talk water skiing

Photo of ski lake in Babinda, Queensland
Skiing at Ski North is a dream.

Forty-five minutes south of Cairns is a small country town called Babinda and it’s now home to a brand new ski lake that is world class. Ski North was built by Greg Cooper AKA Coops who has had a long passion for skiing and now has a pristine water ski site in his backyard.

The site has already hosted L class competitions and ski clinics in its short life. The people who have slalomed here boast of how amazing the conditions are and how you can smash your personal best scores. There must be something in the water up here in Tropical North Queensland because it just seems easy.

Not only does Ski North ski well, but the scenery and serenity here is amazing with natural blue water to rolling mountains just a stone’s throw away. Ski North is currently a one lake slalom and trick site but the long-term vision is to build a second lake for all three events and to host national and international competitions.

Around the lake

One of the advantages of this area is that you can ski year-round because the winters are very mild and pleasant and the summers are warm with a little bit of rain to cool you off between ski sets. While you are in Babinda, there is accommodation and shops close to the ski site and it also has some amazing scenery with nice green mountains.

A short drive you will find crystal clear cool streams and beautiful waterfalls for photos and swimming.

You can also take a drive down to Mission Beach, which is a little hideaway that is just perfect to relax on the beach with no one around. You may even spot the elusive cassowary bird on the way.

The Great Barrier Reef

Photo of a bombie in the Great Barrier Reef from below.
Snorkelling the outer Great Barrier Reef is unreal.

Not only can you find world class skiing here, but the Great Barrier Reef isn’t too far. The reef stretches down the coast of northern Queensland, so it’s accessible by a tour from surrounding areas.

Now the great Barrier Reef has to be on everyone's bucket list. It is one of the most talked about parts of Australia and so it should be. The Great Barrier reef is a World Heritage Site and is the largest living specimen in the world. Scientists believe that parts of the reef in the north are 18 million years old.

You can take trips to parts of the inner and outer northern reef from Mission Beach, Cairns, Port Douglas and Cape Tribulation. If you have the time I would recommend going up to Port Douglas or Cape Tribulation. It’s a 1-2 hr drive north of Cairns, but you will not be disappointed swimming with 1000s of fish, turtles and other marine life.

We did a tour from Port Douglas to the outer reef and the coral was absolutely amazing. It’s a must-see for either snorkelers or divers.

Other attractions

Photo of Kuranda Scenic Train turning corner around mountain.
Exploring the Daintree Rainforest from the Kuranda Scenic Train

Now that you’ve had your ski fix and visited the Great Barrier Reef, you will want to go and explore. Cairns is the perfect hub for either fine dining or the casual Australian pub overlooking the foreshore while enjoying a cold local beer. Cairns has so much to offer for any paced holiday.

If you are looking for adventure then you could try white water rafting, skydiving, bungee jumping, scuba diving and snorkelling. It also has world class mountain bike trails.

If you're looking for something a little bit more relaxing then there is the Cairns Lagoon where you can lay out and swim on the foreshore in the heart of the city. The Botanic Gardens are luscious and have many walking trails. The Cairns Skyrail is a great trip including a scenic train ride through the Daintree Rainforest. Maybe you’d fancy twilight sailing or a daytime boat cruise? A day out to relax and explore Green Island is definitely worth while.

How to get there

Cairns has a international airport and hire cars available to make it easy to get to your next ski destination. So if you want to ski at a world class ski site, explore the Great Barrier Reef and World Heritage Rainforest then I know where your next holiday needs to be: Cairns.

Thanks for reading. If you would like to know more about the author Steven Moss, click my name to read my bio. You can find more of my skiing adventures at

Happy Skiing and Happy Travelling.

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