Mission Beach is part of the Cassowary Coast region, nestled between the major cities of Cairns and Townsville. An uncomplicated beachfront town with over 14 kilometres of magnificent golden sandy beaches. Almost certainly the phrase “where the rainforest meets the beach” was coined here at Mission Beach. Long stretches of clean golden sands with, in most places, the rainforest literally fringing the pristine beaches. Laze under the shade of a palm tree and soak in the true tropics. One of the things that will amaze you about Mission Beach, is that none of the beaches are crowded – if you are looking for peace and tranquility, then your search is over!
Just off the coast are the beautiful Family Group of islands including the famous Dunk Island and the exclusive Bedarra Island. Dunk Island is probably one of the best known of Australia’s tropical islands, largely due to the writings of E.J.Banfield, the beachcomber. He lived there from 1897 to 1923. Dunk is just 4.5 kms offshore, accessible via a 20 minute journey in the Water Taxi.
To the south is the largest island National Park in the world, Hinchinbrook Island. On a clear day you can see Hinchinbrook if you take a steady stroll along the Bicton Hill walking track.
Mission Beach lies in the heart of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, which stretches between Townsville and Cooktown on the north-east coast of Queensland and covers an area of 894,420 hectares. As well as relatively common mammals like the platypus and wallaby, the Wet Tropics is home to 13 mammal species which are found nowhere else in the world. How about this – the Wet Tropics region is home to a quarter of Australia’s frogs, a third of the country’s freshwater fish, and almost half of Australia’s birds – approx 370 species.
This gracious and elusive flightless bird unfortunately is on the list of the World’s Endangered Species. These huge birds are so important to the rainforest, as they are only creatures capable of distributing the seeds of more than 70 species of trees whose fruit is too large for any other forest dwelling animal to eat and relocate. Many experts predict that the cassowary could well be extinct by the turn of the century.
You may already know that lots of Australian towns boast their own ‘Big Thing’. Mission Beach is no exception with the Big Cassowary (as you would expect).