A visit to far north Queensland promises to be hot.
There’s a reason they call it tropical. Because there will be days where the heat is unbearable, the sweat dripping in buckets from your forehead. And of course, you’ll want to go for a swim.
But remember, you’re in croc country. So, the ocean is out of bounds. And so are several rivers and estuaries. Basically, you need to check and double check.
If you’re planning a trip to the Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation, we can help you find some respite from the blistering sun. This blog post will detail how to get to Emmagen Creek near Cape Tribulation and provides useful information to plan a safe visit.
Make sure to read carefully – Crocodile Dundee won’t be around to save ya.
DAINTREE SWIMMING HOLES | EMMAGEN CREEK CAPE TRIBULATION
Emmagen Creek Quick Facts
- Opening Times/Seasons: All day/ All year
- Entrance Fee: Free
- Can you swim at Emmagen Creek? Yes
- Can you camp at Emmagen Creek? No
- Picnic tables: No
- Toilets: No
- BBQ: No
How do I get to Emmagen Creek?
Emmagen Creek is one of the most popular Daintree swimming holes. It is located approximately 15 minutes north of Cape Tribulation.
At the end of Rykers Road after passing Turtle Rock Cafe, the Cape Tribulation Bloomfield Road turns into an unsealed, gravel road. 2WD vehicles are able to navigate the route (we were driving a Toyota Camry) but it is wise to drive slowly as there are several potholes and in the middle of the day, the shadows from the trees can play tricks with the eyes.
Eventually, the road will dip and you will come to the Emmagen Creek crossing. If you’ve driven down to the water’s edge, you’ve gone too far. You will have passed a small dirt clearing on your right which is where vehicles will park before walking to Emmagen Creek swimming hole.
The path to the swimming hole isn’t signposted well. Look for a gap between the scrub and you should spy a well trodden dirt track, at times covered with a thick covering of leaves. Follow this path and soon you’ll come to a bamboo arch. When we visited in February, it was not an obvious fork in the road. The barista at Turtle Rock Cafe advised us to keep an eye out for a Pandanus palm (which we believe we found – we’re not great plant people) before turning left. At this point, you’ll be able to spy the creek through the branches. Follow the creek edge and eventually you’ll reach Emmagen Creek swimming hole.
Are there crocs in Emmagen Creek?
There have been crocs sighted in Emmagen Creek, downstream and leading towards the ocean. When we stopped in at Turtle Creek Cafe for coffee, the girl at the counter assured us that no crocodiles would be at the swimming hole which is upstream.
Can you swim in Emmagen Creek?
Yes, you can swim in Emmagen Creek provided it is upstream. Here, the swimming hole is freshwater and the water is cool and crystal clear. There is a rope tied to a small sturdy branch which naturally encourages visitors to swing off the rope and into the swimming hole. The water is cool and crystal clear. From the creek edge, you will be able to see how deep the creek is with small fish in the water.
Safety Tips For Visiting Emmagen Creek
- Make sure to have a full tank of petrol
- Lock your car and carry your valuables
- Keep an eye out for wildlife, reptiles and insects
- Do not hike alone
- Be careful swimming after heavy rainfall – the current flows downstream so make sure to know your limits
Hiking Tips | What do I need to take to visit Emmagen Creek?
- Micro-fibre towel | we prefer our quick-dry, absorbent Tesalate sand-free towels
- Basic first-aid kit | with space blanket included
- Closed in shoes | trail shoes or runners would be okay based on our experience. We love our Aleader water shoes
- Fully charged phone, hiking app downloaded and screenshots of helpful instructions
- Reusable water bottles | We recommend a bottle with a filter like this Grayl water bottle
- Sunscreen | anytime we are swimming, we try to use SunButter SPF50 Water Resistant Reef Safe Sunscreen
- Insect repellent | We have tried some Natural Insect Repellents but unfortunately, we don’t find them as effective as those that contain DEET. Recommendations welcome as Jasmine gets eaten alive in mosquito country
- Camera | Check out all our photography gear and equipment that we travel with
Exploring more of Far North Queensland?
There is so much to see in Far North Queensland so if you’re looking to plan a detailed itinerary, check out some of these blog posts.
A Road Trip in Tropical North Queensland: a 5 Day Campervan Itinerary from Cairns & Back
How To Hike To Windin Falls
How To Visit Ellinjaa Falls
How To Get To Josephine Falls
How To Get To Nandroya Falls
How To Get To Wallaman Falls
How To Get To Clamshell Falls, Behana Gorge National Park
How To Get To Davies Creek Falls