Hinchinbrook Island can be described as Jurassic Park meets Blue Lagoon.
It is a prominent feature of the seascape off Cardwell and to say it is spectacular is an understatement.
Covered by TWO world heritage areas, the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics, it abounds in natural beauty.
Despite being pretty much de-leafed (is that a word haha) during Cyclone Yasi in 2011 it has recovered well.
In late October 2020 during a calm weather window, we circumnavigated Hinchinbrook Island in our 6.5m Cairns Custom Craft Northwind.
Watch the video of our circumnavigation around the Hinchinbrook Island.
Hinchinbrook Island lies equidistant between Cairns and Townsville in Far North Queensland, Australia.
Known for big barramundi, the area is spectacular to say the least.
To explore the island in it’s entirety, glamour weather is advisable.
However the mainland side can be traversed in all but the most extreme weather conditions.
Although do beware if you have a small boat as the Hinchinbrook Island channel can chop up.
We suggest taking note of our blog – driving a small boat in bad weather for tips on returning across the channel if this happens.
And for some real horror stories check out our storms and sea in small boats interviews.
Real life stories so beware heading on the outside the island in a small boat unless you have good weather.
Like we had…
Places to Explore
We launched at Port Hinchinbrook (near Cardwell) and headed south to Lucinda.
There are a number of creeks including Deluge Creek, Gayundah Creek and Paluma Creek that are well worth a visit if the tide is rising.
When visiting the area allow more than one day as it’s advisable to reach Zoe Bay on the eastern side around an hour before the high.
Zoe Falls Hinchinbrook Island
One of the most spectacular sights of the island is a visit to Zoe Falls.
It’s a short walk (around 800 m) from the creek where you’ll need to secure your boat.
This is croc country so you’ll need to time it so you are not stranded and have to swim to your vessel or high and dry.
We recommend arriving an hour before the high and returning half an hour after so you can have a good look around.
There is a rocky creek to traverse, but otherwise it’s pretty easy going.
The falls are home to Jungle Perch and they are protected so no fishing!
Compare the size in the our previous trip to this trip several years ago and it looks like the large fish have been poached.
Ramsay Bay and the Thorsborne Trail
One of the most amazing sights is travelling up the creeks from Missionary Bay to the pontoon and mangrove boardwalk.
This is the best place to access Ramsay bay and can be reached in most weather conditions.
It also marks the start of the Thorsborne Trail, a 30 km hike and one of the TOP TEN best walks in the world.
To get there without a boat call my mate Brad from Hinchinbrook Island Cruises. ph: 0499 335 383
Brad was a ranger on the island with my wife Karen for a decade and knows it like the back of his hand.
Fishing the region
Over the last decade I have fished extensively in this region and I have to say, it is one of the most productive big barra regions in the country.
And although I no longer do fishing charters having retired in 2018 to focus on our Fish Smarter online courses, my brother Ian Moody does. And he’s a bloody good angler. Catching barra must run in the family haha.
You can contact Ian for charter via our contact page.
So what’s stopping you coming to visit Hinchinbrook Island?
You can fly into either Townsville or Cairns airport and hire a car for the scenic drive to Cardwell.
And if you plan on bringing your boat, be sure and take a look at our online fishing courses.
Students of our signature course Barra Basics have caught thousands of metre plus barramundi using our methods.
If you are going to spend a ton of cash on boats, tackle and fuel, the best bet to maximise that investment is in knowledge.