Frequently asked Questions

What shall I hire?

Single kayaks:

1/2 Day: $50  Full Day: $80

  • Weight:                       19 kg
  • Length:                       280 cm
  • Weight Capacity :      120kg
  • Very Stable
  • Enough extra room for a small child, dog or goat

Double kayaks:

1/2 Day: $80  Full Day: $135

  • Weight:                       32 kg
  • Length:                       370 cm
  • Weight Capacity :      250kg
  • Very Stable
  • Enough extra room for a small child and three baby wombats

S.U.P’s (stand-up Paddle Boards):

1/2 Day: $50  Full Day: $80

  • Weight:                       15 kg
  • Length:                       350 cm
  • Weight Capacity :      120kg
  • Stable – sort of! 
  • Hitch hikers not recommended unless you prefer swimming

Frequently Asked Questions….

About Babinda
Babinda is a small country town full of History and natural beauty. Babinda is approximately 55 km South of Cairns on the Bruce Highway. It is a popular tourist destination and one of those special little places seasoned travellers tell each other to include on their travels.
Local attractions include the Babinda Boulders, Bramston Beach, Eubenangee swamp, Golden Hole and Josephine Falls, reputed by some to be the most beautiful falls in Far North Queensland.

Historic buildings include the Babinda State Hotel built in 1917 by the Queensland Government and the Babinda Railway Station. The visitor centre in the little blue building on the corner of the Highway and the main street used to be the local Police Station. For more information on these attractions, visit the Babinda Information Centre Website.

Babinda Creek, which originates from Queensland’s highest mountian, Mt Bartle Frere and the same creek the famous ‘Babinda Boulders’ lie in, has long been a local’s favourite for water sports and other acitvities including swimming, fishing and ‘tubing’ along after a flood. On clear days it makes the perfect setting for canoeing , kayaking & SUP enthusiasts for peering through it’s crystal clear waters to the life below as the current floats you through the picturesque Valley.

What's Babinda Creek like for kayaking along?

Babinda Creek is a permanently flowing mountain stream. Water flow varies in height and current depending on recent rainfall. After good heavy rains, once the creek clears, paddling is almost discouraged! as the water flow provides the perfect pace for travelling downstream. Paddling too much may mean you get to the end faster than you would like. After long periods without rain, you may encounter occassional (but brief) shallow pebbled areas and logs etc which can be negotiated around. If you need to get out, it will only be for afew steps to lift the kayak over some shallow pebbles. It is otherwise a matter of paddling downstream with the creeks gentle current. We call it ‘couch potato paddling’!. If you go in, it will usually be because your kayak has snuggled up against a log sideways and the current slowly tips your kayak over, these areas are usually shallow and you will probably be ready to go in anyhow!

The kayaks & SUPs we provide are ideal for Babinda Creek’s conditions and allow easy gliding over most shallow areas even when the creek is low. They are stable and very easy to manoeuvre. You will encounter the occasional mini rapid or ‘ripple’ where the level of the creek drops slightly. These are easy and fun, your kayak will follow the main water flow and take you for a little ride. There are many deep swimming holes along the way, and plenty of spots you can stop for some lunch or a swim or even explore.

Snorkelling is also becoming popular with many fish to spot. The water temperature is just perfect as the cool mountain water is warmed in the sun over mostly shallow creek bed – you wont want to get out! You will see many fish along the way, some turtles and birdlife and if you are lucky, a platypus. Babinda Creek’s waters are crystal clear and unless the water level is unusually high (after much rain) or you are passing deep holes, you will be able to see through to the bottom the entire way. The relaxing, peaceful sound of nature will follow you most of the way

Operating Hours

We are open 6 days a week Thursday to Tuesday (CLOSED WEDNESDAY) from 8.00am to 6.00pm (although bookings are essential). We are operating most public holidays.

Kayak & SUP hire is dependant on current creek conditions, which for the most part are perfect for paddling. We don’t operate during very heavy rain and flooding and will wait for the creek to subside before running kayaks & SUPs again. This usually happens fairly quickly after flooding, although it may take a day or two for the water to clear completely.

Where to go for your Babinda kayak trip?

If you wish to paddle down Babinda Creek (bookings are essential), drive to 330 Stager Road, Babinda.

Look for this kayak hanging from the tree. You will enter the Creek at this address. When you arrive at the finish point, either call us or wait for the pre-arranged pick-up time and we will collect the kayaks from there and give you a lift back to your car. This is a popular swimming area.

How does it all work?

It’s simple. You can hire kayaks & SUPs for either a half day (up to 4 hours) or a Full day (up to 8 hours). Half day hire’s start from 8am, and then every half hour to 11.00am. Full day hires can leave anytime up until 11am, but must be ready for pick-up before 5pm.

Your kayaks will be waiting for you here at the Creeks edge, we put you in, then you paddle downstream at your own pace to your pick-up point. When you get there, give us a call (or we can arrange a set time) and we will come and pick you up. This is a one way trip only, paddling back to the hire location is not an option (not that you would want to anyway!) In cases where there are more passengers than our cars can accommodate, we will take the drivers only back to their car so they can then collect the other passengers on their way home. This is only a 5 minute drive and necessary until we can fulfil our wish list of a passenger bus! (Kids wont be separated from their parents – we’ll work around it)

A map is provided of the Creek illustrating the Start point and the pick-up point. After about  2 hours of slow paddling you’ll come to the first two overhead bridges, a railway bridge followed by the Bruce hwy bridge.  You’ll see a nice beach and possibly some locals swimming there.  You have just paddled 5 kms.  

The pick-up point is about one and half hours paddling further downstream and another 4 kms of slow paddling. Its very easily found (its a free caravan/camping site just after the third and fourth overhead bridges you pass). You cant miss it.

So its very easy – your will see two of bridges on your tour and the second set is your pick up point. That’s all you need to remember! Just phone us on your mobile when you are there, and we will come and collect you – no fuss.

Can I bring my own kayak or S.U.P?

Generally speaking no (sorry!). Logistically it ads unnecessary complications and hinders our operation.

However if, for some reason we cannot accommodate your numbers, we may allow you to bring your own craft (BUT ONLY on pre-approval) and similar rates will apply.

Can I fish?
Although line fishing is legally permitted in Babinda Creek, the fish are not considered ‘good eating’. As the prolific aquatic life in this creek is one of its strongest assets, we do not encourage fishing and place high value on the creeks conservation.

Not only does fishing deplete the fish numbers but tangled and broken lines and hooks pose a threat to birds and the many resident platypus, which forage blind underwater. Catching and releasing fish is not a solution as studies show up to 50% of fish die within 6 days as a result of their injuries. As such we don’t allow fishing from our kayaks.

I have no car, how do I get there?
Babinda Kayaking do not provide a pick-up service. Trains leave for Babinda Most days. Visit their website for timetables or phone 1300 131 722 to speak to an operator.

You can also call the Babinda Information centre on 4067 1008 for up to date information on bus services.

What do I bring?
  • A hat, sunscreen and/or protective clothing against the sun.
  • Shoes which can get wet
  • Snorkelling is also popular.
  • A bag to contain your possessions and to secure any loose items.
  • Sunglasses and lanyard to prevent you from losing them.
  • A mobile phone (if you have one)- that way you can phone us to come and pick you up when you reach the end (it’s easier than scheduling a pick-up time). We will supply you with a waterproof phone box.
  • Change of clothes – just in case you or somebody else decides you are going for a dip !
  • Something to eat for a lovely picnic on a beach along the way.
  • Please take care not to leave anything behind on your journey. A rubbish bag will be provided if needed.
Access to Babinda Creek?
Access to Babinda Creek upstream is via private property. Please understand we cannot provide public access to the creek other than for the operation of our hire business. If you are looking to gain access to the creek upstream, please respect people’s private property.
What about kids?
This is a perfect recreational activity for the whole family. Children from 2 years old are catered for as the double kayaks have a 3rd seat in between the front and back seats. Larger kids (starting at about 12 years) often prefer a kayak of their own. This is the perfect introduction for kids to learn basic kayaking skills and build confidence on the water.

Kids love it for the adventure, fish life and swimming, adults love it for the serenity and relaxing scenic paddle. Very small rapids (better described as ‘ripples’) add that element of fun and excitement along the way. There’s no paddling back home against the current either, just let the current take you through the valley to the finish points where we will come and pick you up.

Our views on children’s level of participation are flexible as we trust the parents to be the best judges of their capabilities. Please note; parents/Guaridans will need to sign a liability waiver on behalf of their children in order for them to participate.

What about Dogs?
We are pet friendly. Dogs are welcome. We only stipulate that dogs will need to stay with one of the owners at the pick-up point, whilst we drive the other owner back to their vehicle for collection, who will then drive back to the pick-up point to collect the other owner and pooch. This is only a 5 – 10 minute drive and necessary as we do not have the facilities to transport dogs.
Double or single kayaks ?
Both kayaks work fine on this creek. Some families with children prefer doubles if they are unsure of their childs capabilities. Although by the time kids are 12, they seem to cope quite well on their own. A double kayak is not really reccomended for two beginners as they are much longer and heavier which means they are harder to manouvre around logs etc.

We have found single kayaks easier to learn on as you quickly see the direct result of your actions, they are also much easier to manoeuvre. If sharing a double, it’s harder to work out what you are doing is right or wrong if your partner is doing something completely different (which they usually are!) If creek levels are low, the double kayaks will also bottom out before the single kayaks as they sit deeper in the water – we will recommend single kayaks if this is the case.

What about S.U.P's?
SUPs (Stand-up Paddle Boards) are the new addition to Babinda creek and are a little more challenging than the kayaks. As you are standing, the view is much broader.  When the creek level is low, you will see whats ahead of you easier so you can navigate around logs or choose the deeper currents to avoid bottoming on the creek floor.  Its a great core workout and will do wonders for your balance!

When negotiating mini rapids or there is a risk of hitting a submerged log or anything else, sitting is essential as injury can result if you fall as the board catches on a rock or log.

What about Crocodile's or other wildlife?
Babinda Creek is full of life, mostly harmless.  Although as with any nature based outdoor activity, inherent dangers may exist.

Crocodiles.  There are no crocodiles known in this section of Babinda Creek, although rumours will always prevail. We take crocodile sightings very seriously and will not operate unless we are confident they are not present.  The advantage of Babinda Creek is its clarity and mostly shallow nature, making it very difficult for crocodiles to hide.  Crocodiles are known to inhabit the Russell River, which Babinda Creek eventually runs into, 11 km further downstream from where you will exit the Creek, at a popular swimming spot.

Babinda Creek is the natural habitiat for:

  • Fresh water stone fish (Although rarely seen here and usually found hiding amongst rocks, they do exist.  As such we recommend you wear appropriate water shoes, they can cause extreme pain if stung by them.
  • Catfish.  Although considered harmless, they do have spines that can cause a nasty sting.  We recommend you leave them alone.
  • Platypus.  If you are lucky enough to see one – I’m guessing it wont be for long as they arent terribly sociable. The males have spurs which can cause extreme pain when stung.
  • and  many other wildlife including fish, turtles, water dragons and many species of bird life – enjoy the scenery!
Do I need to be fit?

To access the kayaks, you will need to climb down stairs and walk about 300 metres along the grassed creek bank (easy walk). Climbing into the kayaks is done either directly from concrete stairs leading into the water or from a shallow sand bank if the water level is normal. If you fall in whilst kayaking, you will need to be able to climb back on (usually by finding a shallow area or by taking the kayak to the creek edge and using the bank if the creek level is high).

On arrival at your pick-up point, help with lifting the kayaks onto the trailer is needed (single kayaks weigh around 18 – 20 kg distributed to two people).

The  pick-up point has a beached area to draw the kayaks easily from the water.

What else is there to see and do around Babinda?
The Babinda area is rich in natural beauty and unique experiences. It is well worth a stay. Natural (and free) attractions include;

The beautiful Babinda Boulders just afew kms West of the township. Beautifully maintained Picnic & recreational areas with B.B.Q facilities and amenities in tropical settings on the banks of Babinda Creek with easy access to swimming holes and rainforest walks to spectacular lookouts over the renowned Boulder formations.

Josephine Falls (approx 15km drive from Babinda township) at the base of Mt Bartle Frere is another world class attraction. a short rainforest walk takes you to the base of the falls where you can peer above to the top falls whilst swimming in the popular cool waters at the bottom pool. A rock slide into the pool is very popular with the adventurous. Short walks further along the rainforest walk takes you to two more lookouts towards the top falls.

Head towards the coast and visit Bramston Beach and the Eubenangee swamp off Bramston Beach Road. If you want to experience the Reef, operating from Deeral Boat Ramp is the Frankland Island Cruises, who are the only operators permitted to provide tours to these amazing islands.

Heading further South and just west of Innisfail, you will discover the Mamu rainforest canopy walk and of course, Paronella Park where your journey back in time will take you to a mystical and fascinating world of a romantic dreamer who created a real life fairytale still standing today.

Further South again and back on the coast takes you to the beautiful Etty Bay and Mission Beach which is a destination in its own right.

Try Wildside Adventures Sports Rafting to experience the best white water tour the Tully has to offer.


Bookings may be changed or cancelled up to 48 hours prior to tour without penalty. Bookings cancelled between 24 and 48 hours prior to departure will forfeit 50% of the total price. Bookings cancelled less than 24 hours prior to departure will forfeit 100% of the total price although re-scheduling of your booking may be made at the discretion of Babinda Kayaking.

Participants are not to be affected by drugs or alcohol.

Discounted prices are not available in conjunction with any other offer. Waiver of liability to be signed before participation. Prices and/or products may change without notice.

Babinda Kayaking

330 Stager Road, Mirriwinni QLD 4861

Ph. 0438 405 661

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