Tablelands

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We're local to Tablelands

100 kilometres west of Cairns, and 1800 kilometres north of Brisbane, lies the region known as the Tablelands. The Tablelands region extends from Mount Molloy in the north, to Mount Garnet in the south, and Chillagoe in the west.

It was first discovered in 1875 by explore and prospector, James Venture Mulligan, on his search for fertile lands and valuable minerals. While passing through, he met pioneer grazier John Atherton, and informed him of the tin deposits he found in Herberton. The two decided to team up to create a track through the jungle from Herberton to the main shipping terminal at Port Douglas. This also came in handy when the timber industry sprang up, and timber needed to be transported to the port.

Originally inhabited by the Muluridji people, the region now has a population of 46,937, and is also known as the Atherton Tablelands, or the Cairns Highlands.

The economy of the Tablelands region is primarily driven by agriculture. The cattle industry plays a significant role in the west, as does the dairy industry in the south. The diversity of crops grown in the area is well-known, with produce varying from avocados, coffee, pineapples, mangos, cashews, macadamias, sugar cane, potatoes, and many, many more. The region is growing popular with the many food and wine trails connecting these farms and wineries.

At approximately 750 metres above sea level, the climate is cooler and fresher than the coast. Because of its altitude, the Tablelands region doesn’t have temperature extremes or the high humidity experienced in coastal areas. In the north, winters are cool and dry, and summers are warm and wet. In the south, rainfall is much higher with the area around Topaz recording some of the highest annual rainfall in Australia.

The region is now beginning to build a reputation for its tourism. This is greatly assisted with attractions such as Lake Tinaroo, Chillagoe Observatory, and Malanda & Barron Falls, not to mention events such as the Tastes of the Tablelands Festival, the Mareeba Rodeo and the Atherton Maize Festival also drawing visitors to the region.

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