Rainforests are the most complex and diverse ecosystems on earth. And no other rainforests in Australia are as varied as those found in The Wet Tropics. Almost 30 types of rainforest communities occur here. While The Wet Tropics is only a tiny parcel of the Australian landmass—about 0.1%–it is of superb biological importance.
Here lies the highest concentration of primitive flowering plant families in the world and an almost complete record of the evolution of plant life on earth.
UNESCO World-Heritage Listing
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) seeks to encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. In addition to the Wet Tropics, locations listed as World Heritage sites include east Africa’s Serengeti and Egypt’s pyramids of Giza.
Rare and unique species
Rare and threatened animals found in The Wet Tropics include the southern cassowary, spotted-tailed quoll and the musky-rat kangaroo. In addition, The Wet Tropics claim:
- 85 animal species and 700 plant species found only in this area of the world;
- One third of Australia’s marsupial species;
- A quarter of Australia’s frogs and reptiles;
- 58% of Australia’s bat and butterfly species
- 18% of Australia’s bird species
- Aboriginal history of at least 50,000 years
During rainforest walks with Small World Journeys, you will learn firsthand why this pristine area is one of the most special places on earth.
The significance of Daintree National Park
The Daintree Rainforest is believed to have existed continuously for more than 110 million years, making it possibly the world’s oldest existing rainforest. Most of the world’s 19 primitive plant families are found in Daintree National Park and the surrounding area.