Founded in 1987, this world-renowned cultural attraction combines the latest in theatre, technology and interactive activities featuring Australian indigenous culture. Taking place at Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park, it aims to enlighten, educate and entertain visitors.
The attraction’s success has eased racial tension, spurred self-determination and revived an Aboriginal language. Now one of the largest private employers of Aboriginal people in Australia, it’s a great way to learn more about this fascinating culture.
1. What to Expect
A must-see for anyone visiting Cairns, Tjapukai Cultural Park is a world-renowned indigenous attraction that combines entertainment and education. It also offers a glimpse into the ancient culture of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders people.
The park’s interactive village features a dance theatre, restaurant and retail store selling authentic Aboriginal souvenirs. You can also try fire-making, didgeridoo playing, and boomerang and spear throwing as well as learn about bush foods and medicines.
Tjapukai has undergone a major revamp in 2015. The park features two state-of-the-art theaters, a History and Hero’s Walk and a new restaurant and outdoor bar.
The Creation Theatre re-enacts the story of the world using giant holograms and live performance. It’s a fascinating and emotional experience. There’s also a museum with displays of aboriginal artifacts dating back 40,000 years. Then, there’s the Tjapukai by Night show that takes visitors into the dreamtime to experience Aboriginal culture and tradition.
2. Where to Stay
Located just north of Cairns off the Captain Cook highway, this cultural park is a must-see for anyone visiting the area. Visitors can immerse themselves in Aboriginal culture through traditional dance, art and interactive demonstrations like boomerang throwing and didgeridoo playing.
There are multiple ways to experience Tjapukai Cultural Park, from day tours to night tours. A Tjapukai by night tour is the perfect way to see the sights, from an outdoor Serpent Circle to a lakeside fire ceremony and spectacular cultural show, all of which are included in the ticket price.
A hotel shuttle service is also available, and there are plenty of up-scale and independent hotels nearby. Sea Change Beachfront Apartments, Pullman Palm Cove Sea Temple Resort and Spa and The Reef Retreat are among the most highly rated accommodations near Tjapukai. The best part is that these luxury options are within budget. Find the perfect vacation rental for your family or group, all within easy reach of Tjapukai Cultural Park.
3. What to Eat
The ultimate cultural experience, Tjapukai Cultural Park has been a landmark of Australian tourism for over 17 years. Originally operating from a basement in a shopping centre, it has grown into Australia's leading Cultural Tourist Attraction, employing over 85% Indigenous people and serving as the flagship for marketing Aboriginal culture internationally.
Immerse yourself in 40,000 years of Indigenous Australian history with an unforgettable half-day tour at Tjapukai. The 'Where Australia Begins' attraction uses theatre, a museum, a camp village and art gallery to present one of the world's oldest cultures.
You can choose from a range of experiences including the Tjapukai Creation Story, dance performances, bush foods and medicine, hunting & weapons, and didgeridoo show. There are also a number of activities and interactive opportunities that can be enjoyed on your own, such as the Bush Foods Trail and Bayngga Oven Demonstration (a.m.).
Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park is a must-see attraction in Cairns for visitors of all ages and interests. It's the best place to learn about Australian Indigenous culture, and it's easy to get to from hotels in Cairns, Kuranda, Port Douglas and the Northern Beaches.
4. How to Get There
The best way to get to Tjapukai Cultural Park from Cairns is by bus, which takes about 15 minutes. You can also take the hourly shuttle from Hartley's Crocodile Adventures, or ride the Kuranda Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, which is just a short walk from the park.
At Tjapukai Cultural Park, you can explore indigenous history, tradition and culture in an immersive setting that combines traditional dance and art with interactive activities such as boomerang throwing and didgeridoo playing. The park offers both day and night experiences, including a lakeside fire ceremony.
The park's most popular attraction is the Creation Theatre, which uses the latest technology to tell the story of how the world was created according to Aboriginal beliefs. You can also see a 20-minute film at the History Theatre, which tells the story of the Tjapukai people since white settlers arrived in Australia more than 120 years ago. You can also learn about bush foods and medicines, try your hand at boomerang and spear throwing and enjoy a cultural performance.