Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to some of the common questions

 
How do I make a booking?                                                                       A reservation is essential and can be made by phone at 0417 651 929 or by email at boatman@daintreerivertours.com.au. If there are any technical difficulties try emailing birdnerd328@gmail.com. You can check to see if a cruise is going on the day you wish by checking the dawn cruise availability link and then simply register your interest by email preferably telling me the requested cruise date, time, number of passengers, and where you're staying the previous night.

 
Are there seats available on the dawn cruise?                                    A dawn cruise availability link is provided on this website. Days that cruises are going are denoted as are other days where I cannot offer a tour. This site also gives indication of the number of seats booked.
What will I see?                                                                                           An average of 50 bird and animal species are seen on each cruise. Crocs, tree snakes and rare birds are seen on most tours. A checklist of wildlife seen on each cruise is uploaded to the web after each tour. Wildlife seen on this month's tours can be seen at recent sightings. Historical data can be seen at sightings archive.
 

Where does the tour depart from?                                                     The cruise departs the Daintree Village Jetty. Please note that the Daintree Village is south of the Daintree River ferry crossing. See the map to the right. The jetty is just 100m downhill from the Daintree Village General Store. The above right map may assist once you have made your way to Daintree Village.
 
Driving times?                                                                                          Driving time from Cairns is 1 hr 30 mins, Wonga Beach 15 mins, Daintree River ferry 15 mins, Port Douglas 45 mins, Julatten 55 mins, Mossman 30 mins.
 
Is a pick-up service available?
A pick-up service may be possible for those staying south of the river. Enquire at boatman@daintreerivertours.com.au.
 
Are afternoon cruises, and sole use charters available?
Yes. I am able to provide a variety of services to enjoy the river and see desired wildlife such as crocs, snakes and rare birds. Sole use charters have the advantage that I can concentrate entirely on your viewing desires and is particularly useful for family groups and photographers. Enquire at boatman@daintreerivertours.com.au.
 
Why do you go so early?
The easy answer is you'll see more wildlife. This is the time that wildlife is at its most active and the more secretive species will break their cover more often than later in the day. Furthermore, the beauty of the river is best seen in the clear crisp golden light of early morning. Finally an early start helps to get out ahead of the crowds and see the best of the region before the mass of tourists arrive.
 
When is the best time of year to see wildlife?
It depends on what you want to see. A good example of the seasonal variations are crocodiles. You see plenty lying on the banks of the river during winter but hardly see them in the summer and rarely in the wet season. For more on the variations of wildlife through the year click the link to seasonal variations and/or wildlife bulletin.
What effects do the tides have?
Tides can have an effect on the species likely to be seen. Generally a lowish tide is beneficial for viewing birds and crocodiles. To see some of the scarcer herons it can be beneficial if the low tide occurs just before dawn.
What are the advantages of this cruise over others?                                                                                                                                          1. The tour is conducted in a small boat (maximum 12 pax), usually with just half a dozen passengers, guaranteeing you personalised attention and increased chances of observing your viewing desires. 2. The tour is conducted in a shallow draught vessel allowing exploration of river tributaries that other boats are unable to visit. 3. The tour is conducted in an open vessel for unobstructed viewing of birds and wildlife in the trees and skies above. 4. The tour is conducted in a boat with both outboard and electric motors allowing you to go further, silently explore the tributaries and see more. 5. The early morning start means you can enjoy the best of the river in solitude before the mass of tourists arrive. 6. The early morning start means you can combine a cruise with an exploration of the national park north of the Daintree River. 7. The operator of the cruise is a tourism professional with adept hospitality skills. 8. The operator of the cruise is vastly experienced and has worked at some of the best locations around Australia. 9. The operator of the cruise has a passion for wildlife, enjoys showing wildlife to guests, has a couple of university degrees in environmental sciences and has participated in a multitude of conservation activities. 10. A list of wildlife seen and heard on every cruise is recorded at sightings archive.
 
Is this a wildlife tour or a bird-watching tour?
A highlight of the Daintree region is the diversity of colourful, and rare birds. On every tour I try to find some of these species, as well as crocs and snakes and interpret the wonderful scenery and ecology of the river.
Do cruises go in all conditions?                                                                                                                                                                                    Yes. Cruises depart rain, hail, or shine. Surprisingly good wildlife viewing, particularly for rare, secretive birds is often achieved on days with low light and drizzly conditions. If conditions really do impact on the effectiveness of the tour a refund or discount may be offered.
 
What should I bring?
You should bring a camera or video to record the wildlife and scenery of the river. You should also bring binoculars although there are some to borrow on board. You should also bring a jacket as it can be chilly and drizzly on the river. You may bring nibbles to eat if you wish. Bug spray is not necessary.
Where can we have breakfast?
The Daintree Village General Store and Restaurant, just 100m from the boat jetty, is open for breakfast upon conclusion of the cruise. Why not sit in the outdoor area and view birds foraging amongst the flowering plants whilst partaking of a big breakfast and coffee. A second option, the Croc Eye Cafe, situated next door, opened in 2011. If you think you might get a little bit peckish during the tour your welcome to bring your own snacks.
Where's the toilet?
There is a toilet block 100 metres from the jetty, diagonally across the road from the Daintree General Store. Note that the boat does not have a toilet.
 

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