Best of Cape York Tour

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google logoCockatoursCockatours
5.0 Stars - Based on 122 Guest Reviews

Upcoming Tours

15 Days
Depart & Return: Cairns
Min Age : Open
Max People : 18
Tour Details
Read this page before booking!

This Cape York camping tour is a 15-day overland adventure starting from Cairns, taking you to Pajinka, the northern-most tip of Australia! Enjoy two weeks of camping, relaxing, exploring the outback, observing rare wildlife and learning the unique culture and history of Cape York. 

Each year we refine our tours more and more!  In the past couple years we have built an itinerary with many exciting new tours and activities, with a few special tweaks by Rossy, based on his experience as an Ecologist and local in Cape York. We head up inland and make our way back home through the coastal roads of Cape Tribulation. You will visit the most iconic, well-known places of Cape York including a full-day experience of Thursday Island with Peddells (includes Ferry ride over plus Air-conditioned Bus Tour), a night in Coen to receive a welcome to country and partake in cultural activities, jump on a boat tour to spot crocs and birds with Western Cape Eco Tours in Weipa, swim in the most refreshing waters at the beautiful Fruit Bat Falls and of course, to top off your adventure, celebrate reaching Pajinka, the tip of Australia, with our unforgettable true blue sunset sausage sizzle at the Tip of Australia!

Ensure to read each itinerary to choose the perfect Cape York Safari for you. Remember we are limited to 19 seats and WE SELL OUT every year!

All itineraries are subject to change due to weather, road conditions, unexpected circumstances or driver’s decision based on what is best for the group.  This itinerary is ONLY a guide.  Whilst an itinerary is important, at Cockatours, we believe being flexible and having the ability to explore and deviate is also incredibly important. 

quality and sustainable tourism logo

Departure & Return Locations


Price Includes
  • Tented accommodation
  • Breakfast, lunch & dinner, including 3 dinners out!
  • Sleeping equipment (tall tent, high density foam mattress, sheets/blanket, pillow)
  • 4 outsourced tours
  • All entrance fees to National Parks, ferries & camps
  • Unique experience of Cape York

How do the payments work?

  • A 20% deposit is required within 7 days of booking to secure your seat
  • The balance is due 60 days before departure

2025 Cape York tours are currently on early bird special! Prices may increase after July 1.

Our Prices

As inflation and the cost of goods and services increases, we have had to adjust our prices. We have always tried to keep our prices low for you, however, prices have risen across the board and we must keep up. Fuel prices have risen significantly, increasing the prices of food and other resources in remote areas due to freight costs. Many of our accommodation and tour providers have doubled, and sometimes tripled in price. Since 2023, all dinners out have also been included in your tour price. 

We also pride ourselves in maintaining our vehicles impeccably and paying our guides well.  Our staff are up there with the highest paid tour guides & cooks in Australia. And despite what you may have heard, road conditions in Cape York and the Top End are as bad as they always have been, and there is still a LOT of bad dirt.

We have recently conducted research on all other companies going to Cape York (& a few Gulf Savannah), including motorbikes, tagalongs and tour trucks.  We found that we are still the best value in Cape York, whilst maintaining our 5-star rating.

We are just outlining this as we believe in being transparent and we hope you can appreciate the immense value of these remote, outback tours. We hope you will continue to support us, our staff and our dream.

What to expect

Cockatours is a family-owned business who aim to create unforgettable experiences for everyone. We would love to share our experience and knowledge of the remote top end of Australia with you and show you places, experiences and wildlife you never thought existed!  We run smaller tours with a maximum of 15 (Isuzu) or 19 (MAN) people so it still feels private and we expect everyone to be friendly, considerate and work together as a team to create a positive experience for all. 

As a small business, we have the ability to be flexible and use this as an advantage for creating great experiences and adventures. Tours are subject to change due to weather, road conditions, unexpected circumstances and the guide’s decision to best suit the group. 

If you decide to join us on an adventure, please note the following:

  • be prepared for true bush camps; some have no facilities – we have a bush toilet and shower for these occasions
  • some camp toilets can be a 100-200m walk from your tent
  • tented accommodation: light, easy to setup, 6ft tall
  • team work; everyone helps clean, cook, pack & set up
  • we offer amazing camping meals to suit large groups - our meals are raved about!
  • we have limited access to shops, services or phone reception (Cape York is mostly Telstra only)
  • our itinerary is a guideline. We may alter the tour throughout the season if we feel there is a better option or an activity is not worth your time
  • we have a great reputation to uphold and endeavour to provide an amazing tour every time!
Tour Specific Notes
  • Bring water bottles (or small backpacks with bladders) with a capacity up to 3L for some of the hikes. Staying hydrated in the tropics is critical to feeling good, avoiding headaches and enjoying your tour!
  • You must have hiking shoes (preferably with ankle support) for this tour. If you are an experienced hiker/bushwalker, go with what you normally wear and are comfortable with.
  • Please bring a head lamp with you. They will save you an enormous amount of angst at night time around camp. You will also need them for cave walks. We have a couple of models we recommend and stock in our ‘truck shop’ for $30-40. Clients in the past have replaced their BCF specials with these and been stoked with them. We make no profit on these, we just want our clients to fully enjoy their camping experience!
  • There are lots of walks on these tours. You never have to do a walk, however, to make the most of this trip, completing all (non-optional) walks is highly recommended. We would highly recommend a decent level of fitness or starting morning/afternoon walks at home before this tour commences. You should be able to walk at least 3km over uneven ground, with elevation change to make the most of this tour.
All itineraries are subject to change due to unexpected conditions, circumstances or driver's decision based on what is best for the group.

Please note!

In 2024, our ‘Best of Cape York’ tour will have two different itineraries. As Rinyirru (Lakefield) NP often doesn’t allow camping until late June, due to the wet season, we have included the Iron Range as our wildlife days option. Iron Range NP is famous for its incredible wildlife, boasting many endemic species and is an exciting new addition!

2024: T1 & T2 - Iron Range Version
itinerary for cape york camping tour
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2024: T3 & T4 - Lakefield version
itinerary for cape york camping tour
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2025: T5 & T6 - Lakefield version
preview of cape york tour itinerary
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optional extras for tour
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Your Guides
  • Rossy, Cockatours ownerRossy worked as an ecologist in Cape York for 6 years, helping Indigenous rangers from Coen and Aurukun manage their feral pig populations to improve the health of their country and wetlands and reduce sea turtle nest predation by feral pigs. For the past 5 years he has run tours in Cape York & the NT. He is a passionate photographer and offers lessons to help people learn how to use their camera and understand photography. He is passionate about reptiles and was once a snake catcher in Townsville, but these days prefers to take photos and reduce risk!
  • Our chef/cook for this trip will be announced closer to departure.
Rossy the Guide Next to cycad
The Truck

We call them…BUS-TRUCKS! You will either travel on our 19-seater tour truck, Herc, or our new tour truck (yet to be christened).

Both trucks are setup specifically for the hard conditions in the outback and the rough dirt roads. They are both very comfortable trucks.  The air-conditioning works extremely well and the tinted windows in the cab help keep the glare & heat out!

Herc is a fully contained unit, with the storage and kitchen incorporated into the body. Our new truck is like our smaller tour truck and tows a trailer with our kitchen and gear in it.

On camping tours, we take a maximum of 19 people and there is a small client fridge for your own drinks!

inside of tour truck
lady in front of truck with wood carrier
tour truck with tables set up
truck and trailer in fog
couple sitting at door of tent
camp chairs around fire
Camp chairs (Isuzu Truck)
camp chairs around fire
Camp chairs (MAN Truck)

Camping Equipment

We are very particular about a few things that make a trip comfortable; good food and sleeping gear are two of those. We do our best to maintain our gear to a high standard and turn over our camping gear frequently.

Our single or duo tents are 6.5 ft high, very spacious and easy to put up. The fly can also be removed, making it a big mozzie dome, for those starry nights so you can watch the stars go over head! 

The mattresses are high-quality, high-density dunlop foam mattresses that stack (not rollable) and are comfy! We have sheets and micro-fibre blankets (NO yucky sleeping bags) for bedding and a mattress case as well. The pillows are real pillows and are covered with hygienic pillow covers as well as a standard pillow case. We even supply bath mats for the front of your tent!  The chairs and mattresses vary between trucks due to storage space.

a mattress set up inside a tent

We highly suggest reading through our Frequently Asked Questions before sending through an enquiry or making a booking. 

Click here to visit our FAQs page. 

Camping Checklist

We have provided a handy camping checklist for you to help with your preparations.  This list was built from suggestions from past clients!

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preview of camping packing list
4 Reviews
Sort By:RatingDate

Cheryl Szanto

Couple Traveller

Brilliant loved it

March 11, 2024

Cheryl Szanto

Couple Traveller

Brilliant loved it

March 11, 2024
Wayne Clayton

Wayne Clayton

Solo Traveller

Bloody Fantastic trip. Best fun I have had in Years.

Just booked The Gulf Savana trip in 2025

March 11, 2024


Solo Traveller

This tour was everything & more that I could have wished for on a trip to the tip – the sights, scenery & experiences, great camping spots (especially those by a river), comfy truck, & delicious food were all the best ever. We were very lucky to have the hard working team of knowledgeable tour guide/driver Joe, & talented chef Cass. Thank you 🙂.

September 10, 2023

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