Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures

Hartley’s was completely unexpected. It wasn’t something we knew about, were excited about or had planned for, but it ended up being such a fantastic afternoon. Thom had noticed a sign for it on Captain Cook Highway the night before as we drove from Cairns Airport to our hotel in Port Douglas and we decided to check it out as a spur of the moment activity. In my opinion these are the best kinds of adventures!

Located roughly halfway between Cairns and Port Douglas, Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures is simply the best place to see crocodiles and local wildlife in Tropical North Queensland. Hartley’s honestly had the biggest crocodiles I have ever seen in my life – including Ted, a 900 kilogram crocodile that lives in the lagoon.

Some things not to miss during your visit: 

Hartley’s Lagoon

The number one place at Hartley’s to spot crocs in their natural Habitat. Take a boat cruise through the wetlands and watch the crocodiles jumping out of the water for their food. It really gives you a glimpse at how stealth and sneaky these predators can be. Don’t forget to grab a boat ticket complimentary with your admission.

Wildlife Discovery Trail

This walk takes you to meet lots of freshwater crocs, turtles and lizards. The freshwater crocodiles on this walk were just so big. Almost all of the males were over 600 kilograms! I wouldn’t want to run into them in the wild!

Gondwana Gateway

Take a walk through this beautiful open space, where the kangaroos and wallabies roam free. Lots of cute furry friends in here who are just so happy to have some visitors to play with.

Crocodile Farm 

Take a tour of Hartley’s commercial crocodile farm to learn how crocodile farms work and how crocodile farming contributes to conservation. Crocodile Farm tours start at 10am and 1:30pm.

Wildlife Presentations 

Catch as many of the wildlife presentations as you can to learn more about Australian wildlife! You can see Cassowary Feeding at 9:30am, Crocodile Feeding at 11am, the Snake Show at 2pm, Crocodile Attack Show at 3pm and Koala Feeding at 4:30pm.

Visiting Hartley’s was an unexpected surprise, but it was fantastic. It’s such a lovely sanctuary, with plenty of room to explore and look around at your own pace, without big crowds pushing you along. One of the best Australian animal sanctuary’s that I have been to and definitely worth the visit if you’re exploring North Queensland.

Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures
Captain Cook Highway 
Wangetti Beach, Queensland

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Emma Shaw

Emma is a travel photographer and blogger, living in Melbourne, Australia with her husband Thom in between adventures. She started A Make Believe World to share her experiences, travel tips and destination advice, and to inspire others to travel the world and their own backyard whenever they can.

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