• Kuranda conservation regeneration program
  • Hunting and gathering indigenous immersion experience
  • Stunning Millaa Millaa waterfall
  • Staying at a working Cattle Station on the tablelands
  • Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation exploration
  • Snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef
  • Camping at Fitzroy Island
  • Hike in the Mount Whitfield Conservation Park
  • Service programs for the local community
  • This program is 100% carbon offset. World Expeditions Schools absorb the cost of credits mitigating 100% of the unavoidable carbon emissions as its ongoing commitment to responsible travel

No other region of the world is like far North Queensland. An area that includes the authentic Aussie bush and working cattle stations in the Atherton Tablelands, the Great Barrier Reef and the ancient Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation. This program is a stunning and engaging learning experience encompassing marine biology, food production, biodiversity, indigenous learnings, geology and sustainability along with physical challenges. Our journey will combine engaging activities with conservation programs with an exploration of North Queensland's most famous National Parks.


Start and Finishing Point:



Grading:Introductory to Moderate   


After all the planning and preparation the wait is finally over. On arrival you will be met by your experienced guide and have a full safety and trip briefing over lunch. Part of being a “sustainable” traveller is helping the community in which you are travelling. This afternoon you exemplify sustainable tourism by participating in a service project for people that come to Cairns from remote Indigenous communities. These people come to Cairns for medical reasons, and often do not have any possessions with them. You learn to make special bags using upcycled materials, and then create packs with hygiene items they most need. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight Cairns

Meals:  L,D

This morning we will have breakfast at the hotel before heading out to Kuranda to join a regenerative conservation program. Our group will discuss loss of biodiversity and habitats for a range of species due to agriculture or development. We work with seedlings and learn propagation techniques and then with shovels and gloves, you plant native trees to moderate temperature and humidity and to create niches for other plants and animals. This area is a ‘hotspot’ for biodiversity so your service work here is helping to protect a buffer zone to a World Heritage area. By working with seedlings, digging, planting, and watering today, you get to meet some local volunteers, help the environment and contribute to the community. We continue to Millaa Millaa (meaning “plenty of water” in the local Aboriginal language). The Millaa Millaa waterfall is the icon of tropical north Queensland and one of the most photographed natural sites in the region. The waterfall flows over pure basalt rock thousands of years old in a dramatic burst. We then travel to the stunning Atherton Tablelands to Woodleigh Station. As you cross the Great Dividing Range, you enter outback country, where the dirt turns red and gum trees prevail. Woodleigh is a North Queensland cattle property that’s been owned by the same family for five generations. Our hosts will share their lifestyle, striking landscape, and outback Aussie country life experiences. From open dry forest to swampland, winding waterways and sandy riverbanks to rocky slopes, Woodleigh is the epitome of the true Australian bush. After a classic Aussie “barbie”, we have a fire under starry outback skies. From this remote outback station, views of the stars are phenomenal. Students sleep in dorm-style bunk houses. This afternoon we will explore the property looking for kangaroos and other wildlife before returning around the campfire that night. Overnight in dorm cabins at Woodleigh Cattle Station

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we wake up to life on an outback cattle station. Our group will be directly involved in a number of activities during the day. We learn about agriculture – including where food comes from, how it’s produced, how it reaches our plates, and environmental sustainability. We will be able to discuss food security and food shortages and other important issues facing communities around the world. After lunch we will learn the art of Boomerang throwing. We learn about the significance of the boomerang and how they were used for hunting. You learn proper throwing technique and what makes them return. Later you enter Wooroonooran National Park—a diverse part of the UNESCO Wet Tropics World Heritage Area which hosts some of the oldest continually surviving rainforest in the world. We take an easy walk through the jungle, listening for the call of the king parrot and the bowerbird and emerge at Josephine Falls, where Josephine Creek plunges down a gorgeous set of cascades. Below the falls, boulders surround a fun swimming hole and a natural water slide down a smooth sloping rock face. Return to Cairns for dinner and to spend the night. Overnight Cairns

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we wake early for breakfast and prepare for the big day ahead. Today we will join a marine biologist aboard a catamaran on the Great Barrier Reef, a UNESCO listed World Heritage Site and one of the most bio diverse places on the planet! The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,300 kilometres over an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres. Our boat will dock at a floating pontoon as we embark on a snorkeling tour with our specialist guides. Our marine biologist will explain about the importance of the reef and its hidden creatures in marine ecosystems. We hope to see a rainbow of hard and soft corals, turtles, butterfly fish, clown fish (think Nemo!), parrot fish and giant Maori Wrasse. We will receive training and join the Eye of the Reef data collection program run by the Great Barrier Reefs Marine Park Authority Rapid Monitoring Team to help maintain and manage the long term sustainability of this special place. Today we can also participate in a semi submarine and glass bottom boat ride, underwater observatory and marine life touch tank. This afternoon we head to Fitzroy Island where we will spend the night camping. Fitzroy is a special place. A fringing coral reef surrounds the island, part of the inner Great Barrier Reef, providing a sheltered home for a wide range of marine life. Tonight we will camp out in tents on Fitzroy Island right next to the stunning beach. Overnight camping Fitzroy Island

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we wake to the sounds of the ocean on Fitzroy Island. After breakfast we transfer to the pristine Fitzroy Island. We join a marine naturalist for a safety briefing and background on the island and its inhabitants before we walk straight into the water to explore the reef system. After some exploration we will join a Coral watch and data collection program along with a reef restoration program, addressing climate change and coral bleaching. The data collected goes to the University of Queensland's Coral watch scientists who analyse the results. This afternoon we visit the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre on Fitzroy Island. The CTRC is a volunteer operated, non-profit organisation dedicated to the rehabilitation of sick and injured turtles. The Great Barrier Reef is home to six of the world’s seven species of marine turtles. A number of these are seriously threatened by a diverse range of natural and, more significantly, human induced factors. We will meet some of the volunteers and see hands on the great work being done here. This afternoon we return to Cairns. Overnight Cairns Hotel

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we wake in Cairns and have breakfast before we head out on our morning hike. Today’s hike takes place in Mt. Whitfield Conservation Park, which boasts a surprisingly remote feel despite its proximity to Cairns city. Mount Whitfield is totally isolated from other areas of natural vegetation, making the park a very valuable and delicate resource. You may hike alongside brush-turkeys, monitor lizards, echidnas, pademelons and wallabies. The park is also a favourite place of buff-breasted paradise kingfisher. There are a number of hikes we can choose from for the group depending on the local weather conditions on the day. This evening back in Cairns we will join a commercial kitchen and cook food that we can distribute to a local charity like Anglicare and Rossie's meals, that will be distributed to the homeless. We will hear from a member of the organisation about who the meals go to and how some of the recipients found themselves in this situation. You gain some culinary skills and ensure people less fortunate eat well tonight. Overnight Cairns hotel

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we rise for breakfast before driving to Port Douglas to meet with the local Kuku Yalanji peoples. Our group will spend the morning with the people in this area, exploring their terrain and joining them on a traditional hunting and gathering expedition. The group will travel with traditional custodian members of the Kuku Yalanji and travel to their traditional homeland on Cooya Beach, an area where the community continue to practice their cultural activities and maintain their cultural heritage. The group will explore and discuss matters of cultural importance in this country and the group will lend their hand to traditional activities including the fishing activity of spear throwing and handling, as it is still practised here today. The traditional custodians will take the students along the beach as they continue to hunt and gather, observing cultural medicine and food plants. They will collect materials for the communities' families, venturing into the mangroves and onto the mudflats. The group then returns to the community to see Kuku Yalanji artifacts and share rare stories from their traditional land while preparing their daily food for their families. After lunch we continue to the Daintree Rainforest some of the oldest continuously growing rainforest on earth. For students, this is an important area for study: this area of the country has the highest concentration of primitive flowering plant families in the world, Australia's rarest mammal (the Murina florious bat) and 13 species of birds found nowhere else on earth. We first visit Mossman Gorge to join with a local indigenous guide for a traditional smoking ceremony. We then join him on a wander through rainforest paths, discovering with your guide how the Aboriginal people found their way through dense rainforest, made shelter and learned which native plants were tasty to eat and those that served as weapons and medicine. As your guide shares his stories, you learn how the seasons dictated life, what falls under men’s and women’s “business”, how to make fire in the rainforest and how to make fish very easy to catch. You then sample billy tea and wattle seed damper (bread) made on the fire topped with jam from rainforest berries. We continue to our overnight rainforest lodge, a wonderful lodge located near Cape Tribulation in the rainforest. Overnight Daintree Rainforest Lodge

Meals:  B,L,D

After a night of immersion in the rainforest, you wake to birdcalls and the chatter of the jungle. We spend the morning exploring the rainforest and its unique flora and fauna. Nearby is a crystal-clear rainforest swimming hole used by locals we can walk to, the perfect place to cool off. We return to our lodge and pack our bags before returning to Cairns Airport for our flight home.

Meals:  B,L

Addressing the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Quality Education:  Obtaining a quality education is the foundation to improving people’s lives and sustainable development.

Life On Land:  Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

Learning outcomes for students

A World Expeditions Schools adventure is a unique learning experience. Our journeys are designed to encourage thriving and positive youth development along with leaving the communities and environments where we travel in a better condition than when we arrived.
The programs are designed to enhance the following life skills that will help you grow as an individual:
• the confidence to lead a group and make decisions
• the value of working together as a cohesive team to achieve a common objective
• the ability to face mental and physical challenges
• the ability to adapt to new environments outside of their 'comfort zone'
• to appreciate and care for the natural environment. The environments we trek through are beautiful and often pristine, invariably the students will gain a deeper appreciation and understanding about how their individual actions impact on the environment
• build strong friendships and bonds with their peers and also the local peoples
• basic outdoor skills obtained on trek such as personal hygiene, pitching a tent, helping to prepare meals
Importantly our adventures help increase general well-being and build resilience in young citizens to help them deal with adverse situations in life.


  • Flights to Cairns return
  • All meals as per itinerary
  • Experienced guides, educators and specialist instructors
  • Teachers from St Catherine's accompanying each group
  • Accommodation in hotel, dorm cabins, rainforest lodge and camping
  • All transfers and transportation in private vehicles
  • 24 hour on call assistance
  • All activities and permits as listed in the itinerary
  • Supplies for all community service programs
  • Mask, fins and snorkel hire for inner and outer Great Barrier Reef trips
  • National Park and Marine Park taxes and levies

  • Bottled water or aerated drinks outside of meal time
  • Travel insurance
  • Sleeping bag


Introductory to Moderate

Customise your program

We can fully customise a School Travel Program to suit your students' learning objectives and budget. Whether you require a Service Learning program, physical challenge, cultural immersion or certain curriculum targets - talk to one of our educational travel experts about the elements you need in your itinerary. We pride ourselves on developing unique itineraries to meet the learning requirements for schools.

World Expeditions Schools is a division of one of the world's leading adventure travel companies, World Expeditions. We can develop itineraries in any destination that is offered by World Expeditions, which is to every continent on earth.

Use our simple Expedition Design Form to contact us with your requirements and an educational travel expert will be in touch to assist.

Why travel with us

Why travel with us

Assisted over
14,000 Students Worldwide

Since the 1980's, we have helped students from around the globe to experience the world's most exciting destinations, allowing them to travel, give, grow.

400+ Service Learning

Together with students, we have completed over 400 Service Learning programs in developing countries. We will always continue to support causes including social justice, animal welfare, the environment and more.

Fully Customised
School Travel Programs

Want to include service learning, your school curriculum and a physical challenge, or any of the above? Contact us and we can design a program fully catered for your students and budget.

Safety and
Support - Our #1 Priority

Every school receives a detailed risk management plan that is guided by government advisories and the local partners we work with. We never compromise on the safety of your students to reduce the price of the program.


Want to find out more?

Our educational travel experts are ready to help you tailor an itinerary or service learning project to suit your school’s needs and budget. Contact us today to receive a free consultation.

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