"Mareeba,QLD a modern country town." Mareeba by tropicrd

Mareeba Travel Guide: 29 reviews and 150 photos

History of Mareeba "Meeting place of waters"

Mareeba is an aboriginal word meaning "meeting place of waters"
This refers to the four streams in the area.
The Barron River is the main water stream which was dammed to form Lake Tinaroo and this is fed into the Mareeba/Dimbulah irrigation system.
This area used to be a huge tobacco growing region.
James Venture Mulligan was an explorer who discovered gold on the Palmer River in 1873,and soon after a gold rush started.
In 1895 Mulligan was the first white man to walk over the area now known
as Mareeba.Mulligan also discoverd the Hodgkinson gold field approx 60klms north west of Mareeba in 1876.
This new gold field needed a closer port than Cooktown that served the Palmer region so Trinity Inlet (Cairns) was the obvious choice and a few tracks were paved down the ranges.The tracks were unsuitable for carts.

The bushman Christie Palmerston who travelled around with local aborigines was asked to find a road over the ranges to the sea at Island point.This place became the point of entry and the town was called Port Douglas.The road was known as the 'Bump Road'

In 1877 John Atherton,known as the founder of Mareeba arrived with cattle from Cashmere Station near Mnt Garnet and to take up land in this area.He built a homestead called 'Emerald End' near the juction of three streams on the east bank of the Barron River just north of todays Mareeba.
I plan to write much more about Mareeba and plan another visit to take some photo's.It has an interesting history and well worth a visit.

The gateway to the Peninsula.

Stop here and have a rest at the Heritage Museum.

Stock up on supplies before you head off because they are very expensive the further north you go.

Mareeba is called the Capital of the Cape.

Lots of travelers heading North or West stop at Mareeba for supplies.
Outback cattle stations come to town for their supplies or for a night out on the town especially when the Mareeba rodeo and cattle sales are on.

The information centre is a good place to stop for maps etc.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:A place full of history
  • Cons:A very long main street.
  • In a nutshell:So much to see and do,the list goes on & on.
  • Last visit to Mareeba: Sep 2012
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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