We have just done a trip up to the tip of Cape York and back so I thought I would share where is good to go. We had friends up from Canberra so it was a good excuse to explore.
Bramwell Station was a find, we took a wrong turn on the way to Bramwell Junction. They are nice people and have proper meals for a break from cooking or roadhouse food and spacious campgrounds with hot showers and a laundry. They ask how you like things cooked! And they are good at varying the menu for kids. Also good if you like to sit around and have a drink and a yarn and throw horseshoes.
Fruit Bat falls is gorgeous and much easier to get to than Elliot Falls if you don’t want to tackle the corrugations of the Old Telegraph Track. Fruit Bat is pretty shallow, there are some rocks to get past when you get in but then you have sandy bottom so not too challenging with kids or older folk. It is one of the few places that you can swim without worrying about crocs.
Everyone you meet tells you something different about the road conditions since with 4×4 what is fun for one is a nightmare for another.
Someone told us that the first river crossing on the OTT was the worst and if we thought we could handle it then that was a good gauge to see if we wanted to continue or take the bypass road.
We looked at it and decided against it mainly because I was worried, Seamus would have loved to do it, though the vehicle is in need of repair. I didn’t want to risk sitting around for hours while boys dig and winch or worse lose travel days to repairs. Maybe one day he can do it with 4×4 enthusiasts and with no family tagging along. Later we ended up needing repairs anyway and nothing to do with road conditions.
I am glad we didn’t do the OTT, maybe the info was from last season. A family who just did it told us that the first one was not the worst, there were plenty more risky creek crossings and bad corrugations, they had 5hrs of hell! (the others had said 4hrs). Though Seamus wondered how experienced they were.
Hann River Roadhouse and campground has great burgers and meals. They are very customer focused. They have a resident Emu who was hand raised by the owner, he dances when she whistles! They also have a rainbow lorikeet that is a friendly clown that will climb up your arm, and some little fluffy chooks wandering around.
Near Seisia, near the tip, we stayed at Loyalty Beach. They have a restaurant at the end of the campground where you can get a table actually on the sand. So beautiful at sunset!
We were running out of time to see the tip before my friend had to get back to Weipa to fly home, so we took a helicopter flight around the tip – expensive but so gorgeous. An awesome way to do it and something I will definitely remember. You see all the islands around. You can also take a ferry trip to Thursday Island.
At Coen there is a campground with the turn off just out of town, there is a hand painted sign saying Bill’s Place or something, I am not sure of the name, maybe Bob’s place, it says 4U2camp. We didn’t go there, but were curious. Some friends stayed there since and said that it is great, with showers and toilets and his house made of bottles.
And of course there is our place at Portland Roads with amazing views of the water. You can visit Chili Beach, maybe go on a boat trip with us in a tinny, fish, experience the rainforest – we are surrounded by Iron Range National Park, Lockhart River Aboriginal Community including the Lockhart River Art Gang and an Aboriginal Culture Guide for hire.