How to Spot a Crocodile in Mission Beach, Australia
As soon as we arrived in Cairns, Australia and headed to our airBNB in the rainforest, we knew we were in an awesome place! You could feel the warm humid air, you could hear the bugs and frogs chirping nonstop, and you could see “Watch for Cassowaries” signs and wild wallabies hopping around. This place was going to be so cool! After we got settled into our home, we started planning what we wanted to do during our time in the area. At the top of that list was crocodiles. We definitely wanted to try to see crocodiles in the wild. After failed attempts on our own, we knew we had to ask for help to achieve our goal! This is how to spot a crocodile in Mission Beach, Australia!
We drove around the river, stopped the car at every turn and bridge, even took a scary walk along a swamp to see crocs on our own. But nope. Nada. So, we contacted Croc & Wildlife Tours. And boy are we glad we did! Cal was the most down to earth, nice, and accommodating guy. A true Australian.
Our kids are animal lovers. Every kind. The more dangerous the better. So, it was a dream of theirs to see crocs in the wild. We boarded the boat on the Hull River just before sunset. As Cal gave us great tips about crocs and about the mangroves, we kept our eyes peeled in the waters and banks to spot any croc movement. He kept telling us to "Stay keen. Stay eager." "Hang onto your hats." We loved his Australian demeanor. After searching hard, we saw the tail end of a baby croc getting into the water after we scared it away. We spotted the top of another small croc entering the water just as we passed. But no luck on a full view of a croc.
Once we hit the estuary, we disembarked for some drinks and light food. We took out our drone and camera to capture the beauty! The sunset was stunning! We could see the moon starting to rise over the rainforest. The Super Moon/Blue Moon was just beginning to rise (just a few hours before the Full Lunar Eclipse) and we had the best view! After the sun set, we boarded the boat again, but this time with torches in hand.
Everyone took turns spotlighting the river and mangroves in search of orange star like lights, the elusive crocodile’s eyes. After a lot of patience and persistence, Cody’s spotlight shone on some eyes! Cal steered the boat over to the bank of the river to find a young four-year-old crocodile perched on the soil, still as can be. We got to look at it for a good few minutes from the boat before it got frightened away. But we did it! We spotted a crocodile in the wild! The kids were so excited to accomplish that goal.
It was such a great tour! We learned a ton about crocodiles, mangroves, and the down to earth character of Australians. Cal was such a cool guy and made our time so enjoyable. It was definitely a highlight of our time in Mission Beach.
*Cal took our family on this tour in exchange for photography and blog exposure. However, all opinions and content are our own.