Cooktown Cemetery

Cooktown, Cook Area

The Cooktown cemetery has been in continuous use since the town was established in October 1873. The cemetery was proclaimed in 1875 with trustees representing each of the denominations in Cooktown; Church of England, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Hebrew and Wesleyan Methodist. Despite the large Chinese population there, no Chinese representative was appointed.

The entrance gate faces the road to the Palmer River, where gold discoveries led to Cooktown becoming a port. An internal road leads from the gate and forks in the middle of the reserve. The track to the west terminates at a Chinese Shrine with a low concrete altar. Nestled amongst the trees in the north-west of the cemetery is a brick well, evidence of the Chinese market gardeners who once worked there.

The rest of the site is divided into denominations by the unsealed paths. Significant graves within the site include that of Mary Watson who died of thirst escaping Lizard Island, 90 kilometres to the north-east; mariner Albert Ross Hovell, son of the explorer William Hovell, known for his involvement in 'blackbirding', or procuring Islanders to work as labourers; and Mother Mary De Sales Meagher, founder of the Sisters of Mercy Convent in Cooktown.

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Cooktown

Cooktown, Cook Area
With bitumen all the way along the 330 kilometre inland Mulligan Highway from Cairns, Cooktown is easy to get to. If you want a more adventurous route, go four wheel-driving along the coastal Bloomfield Track crossing rivers and creeks through World Heritage-listed rainforest and join the highway at the mysterious pile of rocks known as Black Mountain.

Cobia Hole Dive Site

Lizard Island, Cook Area
Free Entry
Located just off the shore of Lizard Island north of Cairns, Cobia Hole features a jumble of rocks, no bigger than a tennis court, decorated with marine life. With a maximum depth of 18 metres, this rocky outcrop is home to hovering sweetlips, emperors, cobia, estuary cod and more.

Hope Vale

Hope Vale,
Hope Vale Aboriginal community lies 40 kilometres north of Cooktown. Originally established as a Moravian Lutheran Mission on the east coast near Cape Bedford, the community was later moved to its present location.

Cooktown Botanic Gardens and Gallop Botanic Reserve

Cooktown, Cook Area
Free Entry
Nature's Powerhouse Visitor Information Centre at the Cooktown Botanic Gardens provides all the information you need to explore this site. Established in 1878 as the Gallop Botanic Reserve, it comprises a formal botanic garden, and a substantial natural forest and ocean frontage.

Lizard Island

Lizard Island, Cook Area
Lizard Island is truly secluded from the rest of the world. With 24 powdery-white beaches and 40 luxurious suites, it is the most northern resort in tropical Queensland and is located directly on the Great Barrier Reef.

Black Mountain (Kalkajaka) National Park

Rossville, Cook Area
Free Entry
Black Mountain, an imposing mountain range of massive granite boulders, is home to unique wildlife and rich in Aboriginal culture. The brooding Black Mountain resembles a pile of huge black granite boulders, some the size of houses, stacked seemingly precariously upon one another.

Mount Cook National Park

Cooktown, Cook Area
Free Entry
Rising 431 metres above the surrounding landscape, rugged Mount Cook is the scenic backdrop to Cooktown. Lieutenant Phillip Parker King named Mount Cook in June 1819 during his navigation of northern Australia.
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