Australia, Photography, Travel

Atherton Tablelands


Green rolling hills as far as the eye can see

One of the greatest things about travel is happening upon new unexpected places. One such place in Queensland was the Atherton Tablelands. If you would have mentioned the Tablelands to me a year ago, I would have guessed it was some plateau area like in Venezuela, not lush, green farmland in Australia. But there it is, a place filled with endless green, rolling hills and luckily for us we stumbled upon them during our road trip from Brisbane to Cairns.


Many of the rolling pastures in the Tablelands

One of the immediate things you notice driving around, other than the luscious pastures, are signs pointing towards waterfalls. We seem supernaturally drawn to waterfalls, maybe because our home, Florida, is so flat to almost completely lack them. When I look back on all of our travels, no matter where we go, there almost always seem to be an obligatory waterfall picture in the collection. Well, in the Tablelands we hit the jackpot. All told I believe we visited five waterfalls in the area.

What’s better than viewing a waterfall? Getting to swim through one, which we were able to do at Millaa Millaa Falls, a plunge falls with a nice deep pool and a way to swim through or around the curtain of water to get behind the falls. This was definitely a highlight of our time there.


Taking a dip at Millaa Millaa Falls

Cathedral tree

Curtain Fig Tree

After wearing ourselves out chasing waterfalls, we needed a nice pick-me up so it was off to the Nerada Tea Plantation. Nerada has a quaint cafe where we indulged in the Devonshire Tea. WIth a new wave of energy we scoped out the viewing platform at the tea factory and searched the trees for the elusive Tree-kangaroos. Finally, with the help of a local photographer we were able to spot one solitary kangaroo at the top of the trees, checking off the box on our wildlife search list. On our way out of the plantation we stopped to photograph the row of tea plants stretching out into the distance.

SR in the tea field

My better half meandering through the tea plants

Tea plants

Rows of tea plants at Nerada Tea Plantation


The owner’s pet and mascot at Nerada Tea Plantation

Having thoroughly enjoyed our time in the Atherton area we got back on the road headed north. In your travels where is one of your favorite unexpected places?

Getting gas

Post office



15 thoughts on “Atherton Tablelands

  1. Janis says:

    Hey Dustin! You need to be a geography teacher. Let me know when you start. I’ll take your class.
    Atherton is awesome.
    I guess my most unexpected place of interest would be Paris. Went there in college. From that point on I knew that what you read in books is not like really going to the place. And that produced in me a love for international travel. Although I love the United States very very much.

  2. Australia is a vast land of extremes and gems like this that get stumbled upon every now and then. Personally, I haven’t been to Atherton but perhaps one day. My preferred retreat is the red earth of Central Australia.

    I am always cautious about crocodiles in waterholes and rivers in Northern Australia. I like to see other people swimming in them first. 😉

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