The Cape by Van – First-Timers Guide to Going Where the Wild Things Are

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The Northern Queensland Cape is many Aussie adventurers’ favourite place to travel. There is so much to discover and experience. But there are also a few things to be cautious of too! If you’re taking the family on an adventure along the Cape for the first time in your off road camper, here’s what you need to know before you set off!

What Are the Dangers up North?


The Northern Queensland Cape has a rage of biomes - rainforests, the outback, creeks, and the ocean. This means that there are all kinds of wildlife to look out for that range from spiders, snakes, and crocodiles, to stinging jellyfish, and even the rare cassowary.

While it’s unlikely that you will get hurt by wildlife in the area, it’s wise to always practice caution. Take any warning signs seriously and don’t go into unsafe waters or touch holes that animals may be hiding in. If you do run into any dangerous wildlife, don’t provoke, or feed them but remain distant and calm.

If you’re planning to go for a beach swim, go where there are lifeguards patrolling. These beaches will have stinger and shark nets to keep you safe. If you’re in the rainforests, look for freshwater waterholes to swim in.


Don’t forget one of Australia’s biggest killers - the sun! Sun safety should always be a high priority. Slip, slop, slap, seek and slide!

And for those who need a reminder on the Cancer Council’s slogan:

  • Slip on a shirt,
  • Slop on some sunscreen,
  • Slap on a hat,
  • Seek shade, and
  • Slide on some sunglasses!


There are always potential hazards that you can encounter on the road. If it’s your first time travelling off road, make sure you stay on the tracks at each destination.

Practice safe driving by:

  • Driving to conditions
  • Being cautious of the glare during sunset
  • Using high beams properly at night-time in remote areas
  • Not driving tired
  • Sharing the road with wildlife
  • Knowing the limits of your vehicle

 Remember, you are travelling off road and towing a camper, so be doubly cautious!

How Do You Prepare for Your Travel Across Northern Queensland?

Do your research before you take off. Plan your journey well and know what to look out for in the areas you are travelling to.

If you plan to go to more remote areas, it’s crucial to ensure that you can communicate in the event of an emergency or you get lost. Mobile phones may not always have service, so you should carry either a satellite phone, CB radio, or distress beacon.

In case you get stuck, make sure that you are stocked on supplies. It can take a while for emergency services to arrive or some fellow campers to pass by, so always have enough food and water to get you through.

Always keep a first aid kit in your camper too and learn how to use the supplies and how to treat bites and stings. 

What Else Should You Need to Be Conscious Of?

Please take care of the land and be environmentally conscious! With lots of wildlife and native flora and fauna in these beautiful Northern Queensland landscapes, it is important to keep their habitats clean and safe. It is as simple as cleaning up your campsite and making sure that you are not littering or damaging the area.

If you are taking the kids on your off road holiday, it’s a fantastic opportunity to model and teach them about camping safety.

Now that we’ve got the safety stuff out of the way, it’s time for you to plan your Northern Queensland Cape holiday!