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Hands On Country Eco Tour

Join Traditional Owners, the Mandingalbay Yidinji people, starting with a 15-minute river cruise from the Cairns Marina experiencing ancient lands, discovering an Indigenous Protected Area and conservation programs, visiting a unique mangrove freshwater ecosystem and reconnecting with culture through language and stories.

This three-hour tour includes a Mandingalbay Yidinji welcome smoking ceremony and a guided nature walk, discovering how food and medicinal plants have been used for sustenance and healing for thousands of years.

Insights into your experience

The Hands On Country Eco Tour begins at the Cairns Reef Terminal which is within easy walking distance from the city’s major hotels. Boarding our brand-new covered vessel, guests will cruise across the Trinity Inlet, dotted by yachts and luxury boats. Then continue up Hills Creek to a landing jetty where the salty water of the sea meets the freshwater flowing off the surrounding mountains.

Guests receive an authentic Mandingalbay Yidinji, welcome and cleansing smoking ceremony, and visit a cultural site which is also home to the Djunbunji Land and Sea Rangers who undertake traditional land practices to rejuvenate and nourish the land. 

Our Indigenous guides, recognised as the Traditional Owners since their native title proclamation of 2006 will then escort guests on a 20-minute guided nature walk at the base of Greys Peak National Park, discovering the Mandingalbay Yidinji bush "supermarket and pharmacy".

The region is abundant with food and medicinal plants used for sustenance and healing, which include edible flowers, sweet fruit and native herbs. All year around the air is alive with a chorus of birds and, in the winter months, you can enjoy a stunning cloud of colourful butterflies dancing through the air.

Light refreshments of coconut damper, tea and fresh fruit are served before guests transfer back to the ferry by bus, returning to the Cairns Marina.

Experience Highlights: 

  • Short 15-minute Scenic ferry ride from Cairns Marina across Trinity Inlet
  • Authentic Mandingalbay Yidinji welcome and cleansing smoking ceremony
  • Learn about native bush foods and medicines 
  • Indigenous guided nature walk
  • Morning tea with coconut damper and fresh local fruit


Aboriginal guide
Morning tea

You should bring

Walking shoes
Water bottle

Things to know

This is a 3 hour experience that runs from 9:00am to 12:00pm on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Bookings are essential and the tour operates with a minimum of 5 people and a maximum of 20 people. Larger groups by request.

The tour departs from and returns to the Salt House Restaurant, Reef Fleet Terminal, Pier Point Road, Cairns Marina.

There is a 3-hour car parking facility available at the nearby Pier Shopping Complex/Shangri-La Hotel, located opposite the Reef Fleet Terminal.

Please click the Book Now button to check availability and current pricing. 


  • On-tour ferry and bus transfers
  • Fully Indigenous guided experience
  • Morning tea of damper, tea and fruit

Things to Bring:

  • Closed shoes
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Hat and sunglasses
  • Water bottle
  • Camera
  • Credit card for merchandise or art purchases

Meeting point

The Salt House Restaurant, Reef Fleet Terminal, Pier Point Road, Cairns Marina.


Trinity Inlet, Cairns, Queensland

Ready for an experience you won’t forget?

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