Daintree Rainforest

Last Updated: 24th Feb 2014

<p><img src="http://downloads.contiki.com/contikipedia/australia/harvey/daintree_002.jpg" class="rightwise" title="daintree rainforest" alt="daintree rainforest" /></p> <p>The Daintree Rainforest is home to the most diverse range of plants and animals on the planet, period. It is also the largest area of tropical rainforest in Australia. This is arguably the most important ecological site in the country, more so for it&#8217;s incredible plants than anything else. Many species that now live here originated when Australia was part of Gondwana, more than 120 million years ago. The rainforest is easy acessable from <a href="/contikipedia/articles/cape-tribulation">Cape Tribulation</a> just north of <a href="/contikipedia/articles/cairns">Cairns</a> in Queensland and is a must see for anyone visiting the region.</p> <p>Few <a href="/contikipedia/articles/tours-australia">Australian Tours</a> head further North than Cairns, but if you&#8217;re in the region, it is most certainly worth taking the extra time to visit this truly unique part of the world.</p> <h2>Plants</h2> <p>The Daintree is home to over 3,500 vascular plant species but along with the simply massive variety, perhaps the most unique thing about the Daintree is that along side the more &#8216;modern&#8217; species of are plants that have existed on earth for millions of years. Of the 19 known primitive plant families on earth, 12 are found in the Daintree. The rainforest is also host to Australia&#8217;s largest range of ferns. Some of the more famous plants in the rainforest include the Strangler Fig and mangrove swamps.</p> <p><img src="http://downloads.contiki.com/contikipedia/australia/harvey/daintree_001.jpg" class="rightwise" title="daintree rainforest" alt="daintree rainforest" /></p> <h2>Wildlife</h2> <p>One of the most well known animals living in the Daintree Rainforest area is the Estuarine <a href="/contikipedia/articles/crocodiles">Crocodile</a> however the rainforest is also home to almost half of all Australia&#8217;s bird species (including the <a href="/contikipedia/articles/cassowaries">Cassowary</a>, nearly a quarter of Australia&#8217;s frog species, has more freshwater fish species than any else in the country and over 60% of Australia&#8217;s butterflies.</p>