Discover a little of Queensland’s heritage with a trip to the old pioneer town of Cooktown, named after Captain James Cook who ran aground on the nearby Endeavour Reef in 1770, it was here on the banks of the Endeavour River that James Cook found a suitable place to make repairs to his ship. One hundred and three years later the town was established as the closest known port to the Palmer River Goldfields. At its peak it had a population of some 5,000 people with as many as 17,000 out on the goldfields, at least two thirds of all these being Chinese.
Now Cooktown is a popular tourist destination with many attractions, the James Cook Museum, Botanic Gardens, Grassy Hill, art galleries and the Cook memorials. On the return journey a stop at the Lions Den Hotel where little has changed in 100 years takes you back in time to the wild and rowdy days of the gold rush period. Today tin miners, fossickers, cattlemen and hippies all gather here, definitely the best place in the Far North to hear a pub yarn.
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