Welcome to Chillagoe

Evidence of Aboriginal settlement here goes back an estimated 37,000 years: the traditional owners of this land are the Wakamin people who called the area Wookathaka.

In 1910, Chillagoe's population peaked at 10,000; today, it's about 190. Marble is still quarried here and was used in the construction of Parliament House in Canberra.

Although not part of the Atherton Tablelands, Chillagoe is reached via Mareeba, from where the Wheelbarrow Way takes you deep into the northern outback. As in most outback towns, you needn't worry about remembering the names of any characters you encounter: everyone goes by 'mate'.

Top experiences in Chillagoe

Travel guides

Starting at $29.99

Image for

Chillagoe activities

$499.14 Outdoor Activities

Three day swag camping tour of rainforest, outback and tablelands

DAY 1. From your accommodation pick up from 7am you will be driven north along the scenic Marlin coast to Mossman Gorge in the Daintree rainforest for a morning of guided walking, swimming and relaxation in this world heritage listed area. Lunch before midday by a tropical beach before continuing onto the Daintree river itself for a guided nature spotting river cruise. After welcome return refreshments including a tropical fruit sampling, you travel inland over the range to your Aussie bush camp. At camp you can relax in the bush setting and enjoy the sunset before dinner and campfire comradery, until slumbering in your swag under the night stars. DAY 2. For those booked on the optional extra Hotair balloon flight will rise earlier for the short drive to the rendezvous point by 5am, otherwise it's settlers alarm (bush birds) around 6:30 for any others. After breakfast with some locally grown coffee, you travel west to the historic outback town of Chillagoe for late morning, early afternoon. There is plenty to see and do in this charismatic town with its limestone karst towers, heritage mining smelters, open marble quarries and odd formations and your activities are divided by lunch and swimming opportunity in a spring fed creek. Early afternoon you depart further west along the scenic mining trail with much nature spotting opportunities before your arrival at the bush camp on a working cattle station. Another chance to enjoy the sunset, dinner and campfire before a night sky talk around 8pm. DAY 3. After breakfast it's a short drive to experience Undara, the world's most extensive lava tube system. This great slice of the outback offers much and the optional extra 2 hour guided lava tube tour will commence at 8am. You can check out the historic converted train carriages, or have a swim in the pool before a gourmet burger bbq lunch around 11am. After lunch you travel east for a dramatic change of environment in the upland rainforests of the Atherton Tablelands. Here you can view the volcanic crater at Mt Hypipamee national park, swim at Dinner falls and visit the spectacular curtain fig tree. Return to Cairns is via the Gillies range with amazing valley views before accommodation drop off and end to your tour.