Scenic Rim Walk in Cooktown


Scenic Rim Walk is a great long walk around Cooktown.

It consists of a few different parts which can also be done separately, however the whole thing is not impossible to do at once if you are fit.

You could start at Finch Bay, walk to Cherry Tree Bay, then Grassy Hill, the waterfront and Charlotte Street, then via Adelaide Street to the historical Cooktown Cemetery.


And from there you could walk via streets back to Finch Bay.


Near the Finch Bay end is also a walk to the top of Mount Cook, best done on a separate day as it is more demanding.

Grassy Hill to Cherry Tree Bay Walk

Or, to avoid all the streets, you could start with climbing up Grassy Hill and then do a very nice coastal bush walk to Finch Bay.

cherry tree bay walk grassy hill

No too far from the tip of Grassy Hill is the start of the walk to the bays, which looks like on the photo above. 

cherry tree bay walk start

The first one is the walk to Cherry Tree Bay

cherry tree bay walk

... and it starts off going through open forest

cherry tree bay walk

... and is mostly a very easy stroll but has a few root hops in a few places.

cherry tree bay walk cooktown

As you get further in, the plant life gets gradually richer, 

cherry tree bay walk plants

... and soon you are in a small patch of rainforest

cherry tree bay walk rainforest cherry tree bay walk rainforest

It's closed forest, gets almost dark for a little while,

cherry tree bay walk end cherry tree bay walk end

... but then all of a sudden you are on the beach.

cherry tree bay walk beach

It's the beautiful Cherry Tree Bay,

cherry tree bay

... and from here the walk continues to Finch Bay and Botanical Gardens

cherry tree bay cooktown

Cherry Tree Bay to Finch Bay Walk

It's a one kilometre walk that starts a little further on the beach,

finch bay walk

... and is hillier than the other walk.

finch bay walk steps finch bay walk steps

Almost straight away the steps start, 

finch bay walk cooktown

... then it goes past a lookout

finch bay walk lookout

... but most of the time you don't see the ocean. 

finch bay walk steep finch bay walk rocky

The steps continue over another hill

finch bay walk hilly finch bay walk descent

... and then descend down towards the bay, 

finch bay walk cooktown finch bay walk cooktown

... past the turnoff to Botanical Gardens

finch bay walk cooktown botanical gardens finch bay walk cooktown botanical gardens

... and then down to the beach.

finch bay walk cooktown

Finch Bay is beautiful, and is also a popular place for the locals to walk their dogs.

finch bay walking


Adelaide Street to Cooktown Cemetery Walk

In the other end of the Scenic Rim Walk, there is another nature walk, but this one is different.  

cooktown laura railway carriages

It starts at the old railway carriages in Adelaide Street, 

cooktown scenic rim walk start

... and goes through mangroves

cooktown scenic rim walk mangroves

It is a level and easy walk compared to the coastal one, 

cooktown scenic rim walk adelaide st end

... it goes along the mangove line ...

cooktown scenic rim walk mangrove line

... and sometimes between mangroves,

cooktown scenic rim walk mangroves

... so mosquito repellent is a good thing to have.

cooktown scenic rim walk adelaide st to cemetery

And it is strait, and you soon see why.

cooktown scenic rim walk

Further in you cross two creeks on small bridges,

cooktown scenic rim walk creek bridges

... there are small mangrove crabs at low tide,

mangrove crabs

... and after that you start having logs across the track. 

cooktown scenic rim walk railway line

Yes - and hence the old railway carriages in the start of the walk - this is the old Cooktown - Laura Railway.

cooktown scenic rim walk railway line

It is hard to imagine just how big and important it was in the day, and where the carriages are today, used to be the station building that has since been moved to Charlotte Street.

cooktown laura railway line

Towards the end the track turns left,

cooktown scenic rim walk to cemetery

... past some shell middens

cooktown scenic rim walk shell midden

... and through an open forest.

cooktown scenic rim walk open forest

Then it goes moister ...

cooktown scenic rim walk cemetery end

... and turns into a melaleuca swamp,

cooktown scenic rim walk melaleuca swamp

... and in the end you come into the back of the old Cooktown Cemetery.

cooktown scenic rim walk end

You can continue through the cemetery and out to the street where the Scenic Rim Walk can be continued back to Finch Bay

cooktown scenic rim walk cemetery

But you better have a look around the cemetery first - it's a good one.

cooktown cemetery walk

There are different sections for Anglican, Roman Catholics, Chinese, Jewish and others, and there are some famous graves including Mary Watson's.





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