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Cardwell

Cardwell and Port Hinchinbrook are the southern gateway to the Cassowary Coast region boasting world-class landscapes and experiences. They are also the gateway to Hinchinbrook Island, the biggest island national park in Australia and home of the Thorsborne Walking Trail.

Settled in 1864, Cardwell was the first settlement north of Bowen and is is situated 165km north of Townsville. It has a warm tropical climate and is a very popular spot for fishing enthusiasts.

Offering a range of attractions, site seeing, annual events and historical places to visit. The Cultural precinct brings together the arts and history of Cardwell. Follow the Cardwell Environmental, Cultural and Heritage Trail, enjoy local art at the gallery or learn about the devastation of Cyclone Yasi at the J C Hubinger Museum. Cardwell commemorates the historic Battle of the Coral Sea.

Also offering a good range of services and shopping facilities and a variety of accommodation from caravan parks, hostels, motels and bed & breakfasts. A number of cafes and restaurants offer a range of options to visitors, and menus often include fresh locally-farmed prawns.

The Cardwell Country Club has a nine-hole golf course and club facilities, where visitors are very welcome.

With it’s stunning backdrop of Hinchinbrook Island, the Cardwell foreshore is the focal point of Cardwell and a popular place for fishing or spotting turtles and dugong which often seen from the Jetty. The playgrounds barbeque and picnic facilities, walking and cycling paths are easily accessible.

There is more rich local information about this beautiful township at the accredited Cardwell Visitor and Heritage Centre located on the Bruce Highway. Set in the historic precinct in the old “Cardwell Telegraph and Post Office” (now known as the Bush Telegraph) which was built in 1870 and is one of the oldest buildings in North Queensland.

Don’t forget to visit the Girringun Aboriginal Art Centre where you can see contemporary and traditional art from the region’s nine traditional owner groups. Work includes traditional baskets, paintings, ceramics and wooden artefacts as well as a unique Bagu with Jiman artwork inspired by the traditional fire making implements of the Girringun Rainforest people.

Hinchinbrook Island is 5km offshore with 393sqkm of beaches, rainforest and wilderness walks. The Thorsborne Trail, a 32km wilderness trek, is on the eastern side and is recognised as one of the top wilderness walks in the world. Island transfers to the island are from Cardwell.

Cardwell is surrounded by natural attractions including national parks, waterfalls and walking trails. The Cardwell Forest Drive is a 26km scenic drive from the town centre, taking in lookouts, freshwater swimming holes and picnic spots. You also have Five Mile Creek which is a popular swimming spot for the locals and you can swim with the jungle perch, the Dalrymple Gap walking trail is also located to the south of Cardwell and takes you from the Coast the Hinterland.

As the halfway point on the Bruce Highway between Cairns and Townsville, Cardwell is an ideal base to explore and fish the entire region.

Map of Cardwell
Map of Cardwell
Seaview Cafe Big Crab at Cardwell - Photo Courtesy of IG _rox_08
Seaview Cafe Big Crab at Cardwell - Photo Courtesy of IG _rox_08
Cardwell Spa Pools - Photo Courtesy of instagram.com/gypsea__lust
Cardwell Spa Pools - Photo Courtesy of instagram.com/gypsea__lust
Cardwell Forest Drive - Cardwell Spa Pools - Photo by instagram.com/_aswewander
Cardwell Forest Drive - Cardwell Spa Pools - Photo by instagram.com/_aswewander
Dana Scully and Friend - Photo by Cardwell UFO Festival
Dana Scully and Friend - Photo by Cardwell UFO Festival