Summary: The Crystal Cascades are a series of swimming holes and cascades along Freshwater Creek near Cairns. The furthest waterhole along the 1.5km track has a pair of picturesque waterfalls.

Crystal Cascades is a series of waterholes and waterfalls along Freshwater Creek, near Cairns in Far North Queensland. The largest waterhole is under a sheer cliff; the highest point of the cliff is called “No Fear” and locals jump into the water from here – which has resulted in a few fatalities. The waterfall and creek flows year-round, being fed by a large catchment area. 

Crystal Cascades

A 1.5km paved trail goes past swimming holes and smaller falls, before reaching the largest waterhole and waterfall at the end of the track.

Swimming at Crystal Cascades

Swimming is allowed most of the way along the creek; jumping off the cliffs and boulders is not recommended (and there are barricades preventing access) – there were five fatalities here within a five month period in 2014, and another two deaths in April 2023. There are many deep swimming holes along the track to the two largest waterfalls.

Getting to Crystal Cascades

The 1.5km walking trail starts at the end of Redlynch Intake Road, which is about 20km (20min) from Cairns, passing a few nice swimming holes and picnic sites.

From the carpark, there is both a trail along Freshwater Creek to the Crystal Cascades, and another trail along Dowah Creek to Fairy Falls.

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