How would you like to live in beautiful Cairns on a seven acre block of rainforest with a crystal clear, year-round creek where you could feed turtles, eels and many varieties of fish? Wait, I haven't finished yet. You'd have a team of groundsmen keeping everything in tip-top condition. You wouldn't have to worry about power or water, it would be supplied to your residence. The garbage would be removed and your shower and toilet cleaned for you daily. You would, of course, have a pool and a spa and somebody to clean and maintain them for you. The number of birds in the trees and their beautiful songs would be an added bonus, as would the sunshine. Best of all, you wouldn't be tied down, you could come and go as you pleased and it would all be looked after in your absence.
A pipe dream? Prohibitively expensive? Not at all! It's reality at Cool Waters - that's why Pam and I come back year after year.

The Cool Waters Holiday Park has been carved out of virgin rainforest and has retained as much of the greenery as possible, predominantly mature palms and ancient fig trees. This makes it a delightfully picturesque and shady environment in which to relax. It also ensures a very wide variety of bird life and the dawn chorus is captivating. Spotting the birds is a challenge as the trees are tall and the canopy dense.

When did you ever stay in a holiday park like this? Cool Waters is camping in the rainforest.

To enhance this idyllic environment, the Freshwater Creek meanders around two sides of the park, its water rich in fish, turtles, and other aquatic life (though not crocodiles!).

The clear waters of the Freshwater Creek.

Steps have been provided so that visitors have access to the water’s edge to feed the turtles; on one occasion I counted twenty without moving from the spot. Turtles that is, not steps.

A piece of bread thrown into the middle of the creek produces a swirl and a splash as fish race each other to reach it first.

When visitors arrive at a park, first impressions count! The personality of the representative behind the reception desk is all-important. The new arrival may well have been driving in stressful conditions for some hours and will be tired and stiff. A warm smile and a friendly, helpful manner mean so much and the team at Cool Waters has got it right.

Dwayne and Sue, the proprietors of Cool Waters. Always happy
and always helpful, despite hard work and long hours.

The walls of the reception area at Cool Waters are not covered in notices telling you all the things that you can't do. Instead there are plenty of brochures advising you of the many things that you can do - and see - in the area, including the wonderful Skyrail cable-car ride over the rainforest to Kuranda, and the Scenic Railway which runs to the same destination. Since neither are to be missed, why not travel up on the Scenic Railway and return on the Skyrail? Or vice versa, as we did.

Cool Waters is owned and run by a dynamic young couple, Dwayne and Susan Crowe, assisted by a team of cleaners, groundsmen, handymen etc. They all work incredibly hard.

Cairns city centre is about eight minutes easy drive from Cool Waters though there are several shopping centres even closer, and there is a petrol station and a bottle shop almost next door. Basic commodities like bread and milk are available from the park office.

One aspect of Cool Waters that both Pam and I really appreciated was the quality of the ablution facilities. These points are important to caravanners, especially the ladies. They are frequently what a park is judged on. Cool Waters scored a clear ten here; the blocks are bright, clean and modern. They provide good quality toilet paper, a toilet brush in each cubicle, a soft soap dispenser, paper towels, a sponge to wipe around the sinks, a squeegee-type mop and a bucket containing some diluted disinfectant to dry the shower recess after use. But the team doesn’t stop there; in addition to the usual daily clean, they check each block at around dawn each morning to ensure it’s clean and ready for use, sweeping out any bugs that were attracted by the light overnight. Further, the blocks are divided into four so that when one ‘ladies’ or ‘gents’ is closed for cleaning, the one next door is open. And guess what? No irritating keys or entry codes are required!

The outside walls of the ablution blocks are painted to blend into the background. Just look at that foliage!

How is this for an indication of the lengths to which the management team will go? In the quiet season they spend a night in each guest chalet (no, not all together!) because that way they are able to see things from the guest’s viewpoint and pick up problems that might otherwise slip by. A squeaky bed, a lumpy mattress, a dripping tap perhaps. What better way to ensure everything is right for the guests?

Another thing we really liked is that the staff took the trouble to remember our names, and greeted us by them each time we met. In the park, each caravan site has a concrete pad alongside the ’van so that there’s no dust or mud being trodden inside. All the driveways are paved. Water quality and pressure is good – straight from the sparkling reservoir at the Copperlode Dam, high in the forest-covered mountains which form a backdrop to the park. A sullage disposal drain is provided for each ’van and there is a central ‘dump point’ for caravan toilets. We had no power problems at all, even when Pam used her hair dryer.

The Camp Kitchen is equipped with a fridge/freezer and several free gas barbecues. Regularly there’s a free concert there in the evening accompanied by a sausage sizzle or pizza evening which is by ‘gold coin donation’, all proceeds going to charity. Similarly, there are morning teas with scones, jam and lashings of cream. What a great way to make new friends and help a charity.

The Camp Kitchen where Devonshire teas are provided during the season,
and food and entertainment are provided some evenings.

What about fees, so important to most campers? We found the Cool Waters fees very competitive indeed.
Like a morning walk? Follow the path along the creek for 200 metres and you are in the local park which teems with tropical bird life.
Like to swim? Cool Waters' swimming pool is just beautiful.
Need Internet access? The Cool Waters reception area provides Internet facilities for your use. And - better still - if you travel with a laptop with a wireless modem, this park has a wireless connection for you to go on line from your own caravan. At last! A caravan park that knows we’re in the 21st Century!

Below are some 'tree' pictures from Cool Waters. On our first visit Pam and I booked in for a week and stayed for two months. Even then it was with much sadness that we left to continue exploring Australia. A year later we were back, and loving it. And again the following year.

If you are intending to visit Cairns and the surrounding area you might like to look at Page 12 to 16 of this site where we describe our time there. We even went to the tip of Cape York on a cargo ship; it was fabulous and it's all there with pictures. Our friends at Cool Waters arranged it all for us and looked after our car and caravan for nothing while we were away.

I'll list the park's contact details, but before I do let me stress that I don't own shares in Cool Waters, I don't have a relative who does and I'm not being paid to write nice things about the park. Pam and I have had wonderful times there and I'm sure you'd enjoy it just as much. It's simply the best!

Street address: Cool Waters Holiday Park, Brinsmead Road, (corner of View Street), Brinsmead, Cairns 4870.
(07) 4034 1949
(07) 4034 1374
G.P.S. ref.      S16° 54' 17.1"  E145° 42' 32.5"

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