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Visiting Millstream Falls & Little Millstream Falls: Complete Guide

Visiting Millstream Falls & Little Millstream Falls: Complete Guide

Olly Gaspar

By Olly Gaspar, full-time traveler for 6 years. I visit every place I write about & share real tips, photos, & advice from my trips.

Millstream Falls & Little Millstream Falls are two different waterfalls just 500 m apart along The Millstream watercourse in the Atherton Tablelands Region near Ravenshoe, Queensland.

Millstream Falls National Park has to be one of the most underrated places to visit in the broader Atherton Tablelands region near Cairns in Tropical North Queensland. This is especially true if you’re a waterfall fan!

Although they are close, the two access car parks for each waterfall are at separate locations. This was initially the most confusing part about visiting these waterfalls for me.

After visiting these falls on my quest to photograph and document over 30 waterfalls near Cairns, I’ve created this guide, covering how to get to both waterfalls, what to expect and I’ll also include a few photos that I hope will inspire you to hit the road!

Big millstream falls
Big Milltream Falls
Little millstream falls
Little Millstream Falls

About Millstream Falls National Park

Millstream Falls National Park is located on the western edge of the World Heritage Area. You'll find it near the township of Ravenshoe in the Tablelands Region.

"The Millstream" as the watercourse and source of both waterfalls is named, was formed more than three million years ago through the erosion of 300 million-year-old rhyolites and granites. This created the rugged, hilly landscapes and valleys in the Millstream Falls National Park.

This National Park varies greatly from the nearby wet tropical parks and the vegetation is much drier and dominated by eucalypts.

The Jirrbal people are the traditional owners of this land and both Millstream waterfalls are rich in indigenous cultural history and storytelling.

Read more about Millstream Falls National Park's nature, culture and history.

Little millstream falls

Getting to Millstream Falls National Park from Cairns

Millstream Falls National Park is located approximately 121 kilometres (roughly 2 hour's drive) from Cairns. The easiest way to find your way is to plug "Ravenshoe" into Google Maps.

If you prefer directions, you'll want to take the Bruce Highway south from Cairns towards Gordonvale. From here, take a right near Walsh's Pyramid onto the steep and winding Gillies Range Road.

Follow this road all the way up to the Tablelands, past Yungaburra and follow signs for the Kennedy Highway near Atherton. Next, drive south on the Kennedy Highway, passing Dinner Falls and Mount Hypipamee until you reach the small town of Ravenshoe.

Once you're at Ravenshoe, you're only a few minutes away from Big Millstream Falls, which is just 5 km along Kennedy Highway heading southwest. Just keep going until you see a sign for "Big Millstream Falls" on Millstream Falls Road to the right. The car park is found at the end of this short road, which can be accessed by any vehicle type and is free to park.

  • Google Maps Pin: "Big Millstream Falls"
Big millstream falls map

Although the drive is a little far, I highly recommend spending at least a big day trip exploring this region. In my opinion, the Tablelands are one of the rawest and most underrated regions in Far North Queensland. There are so many waterfalls, hikes, lookouts and adventures to be had here that it'd be a massive shame to miss. If you're travelling in Cairns, make sure to add the Tablelands and Millstream Falls to your itinerary.

Also Nearby: Windin Falls - An Epic Infinity Pool Waterfall

Car in the rainforest near cairns

Car Rentals in Far North Queensland

Cairns is one of the most popular travel destinations in Australia and car rentals quickly book out!

I've missed out on cars before & recommend booking well in advance. I always use DiscoverCars as they compare the widest range of rentals across dealerships in the Far North.

Big Millstream Falls

Big Millstream Falls is reputedly Australia's widest single-drop waterfall and a Tablelands attraction definitely worth visiting. The waterfall plunges steeply down basalt lava columns into a wide freshwater pool.

Big millstream waterfall tablelands

Unfortunately, there is no direct access to the base for swimming. However, there is a short 680 metre (return) walking track that leads to a lookout point with good views of the waterfall.

This walking track is sealed and it takes no more than a few minutes to reach the lookout.

Big millstream falls lookout, ravenshoe queenland

Big Millstream Falls Lookout

At the lookout point, you'll get the best views possible of the waterfall. If you look to the right, you'll notice that there is a second plunging flow hidden behind the rocks.

Big millstream falls from the lookoug
View from the lookout

There is also a short, 1 km walking track from the Big Millstream Falls car park which winds through an area used by the 2/28th Battalions of the Australian Army during WWII.

Little Millstream Falls

Although Little Millstream Falls is obviously smaller than its bigger, downstream brother, it's still an impressive waterfall and in my opinion, a better waterfall to visit if you only have time for one.

I say that because this waterfall track winds down all the way to a wide, deep pool at the base of the falls. The waterfall itself is also a trio of plunging streams that creates a scenic little oasis amidst the dry eucalypt and red-dirt landscape.

Little millstream falls

How to get to Little Millstream Falls

Getting to Little Millstream Falls is initially a little more confusing than the previous waterfall. I'm sure I'm not alone when at first, I assumed that both waterfalls were accessible from. the same car park. However, this is not the case.

Although it's is only 500 m upstream from Big Millstream, you'll have to drive back around to Ravenshoe and take a right on Tully Falls Road. Next, take the first right onto Wooroora Road and continue past the motorcycle club on the right. Soon, you'll see a signpost for "Little Millstream Falls" on the right. It's not a big detour at all and only takes about 10 minutes if that.

This short road to the car park is dirt with a few bumps. But, don't worry you'll manage even in your average 2WD sedan or hatchback. There is loads of space to park your car at the end of this short road. If you're looking to do some hiking, there are even some trails leading from here into the Misty Mountains.

The permanent track down to the waterfall is signposted and easy to spot. It's only about 700 M return to the base of the pond, and you'll get plenty of vantage opportunities along the short track.

  • Google Maps Pin: "Little Millstream Falls Car Park" (don't navigate to the "Little Millstream Falls" pin).
Map of little millstream falls in queensland
Grayl water filter bottle

Get Clean Drinking Water on Your Hike

I take the Grayl GeoPress Purifier Bottle on every hike and use it as my go-to source for filtering water all over the world. I've even used it to drink tap water in India!

Compare how the GeoPress stacks up against the best water bottle filters on the market.

Swimming at Little Millstream Falls

After snapping a few photos and enjoying the view, we decided to take a quick swim at the end of the track. This large catchment area is deep and very wide which makes it a perfect spot to cool off on a hot summer's day.

Little millstream swimming
Little millstream falls, millstream falls national park, atherton tablelands

Make sure to keep quiet and an eye out for platypus who live in the river.

FAQ About Visiting Big & Little Millstream Falls

What are Little and Big Millstream Falls?

Little and Big Millstream Falls are remarkable natural waterfalls located in Queensland, Australia. Big Millstream Falls is known as Australia's widest single-drop waterfall, while Little Millstream Falls is a more secluded waterfall experience.

Are there any entry fees?

No, visiting both Little and Big Millstream Falls is free. It's also free to park your vehicles at both waterfalls.

What is the best time to visit?

The best time to visit is during the wet season (November to March) when the water flow is at its peak. However, be mindful of the weather conditions as heavy rains can make access difficult and swimming can get fairly dangerous!

What should I bring with me?

Bring water, snacks, a camera, swimwear, sunscreen, and insect repellent. If you plan to hike, wear decent hiking shoes.

Where to Stay In Cairns

Visiting Cairns? The best places to stay are near the Cairns Esplanade or on the sunny Northern Beaches. Below are the top 4 options for varying budgets.

Alternatively, check out my Port Douglas accommodation guide for more ideas on where to stay in Far North Queensland.

Girl sunbathing at crystalbrook riley resort in cairns

1. Crystalbrook Riley Luxury

If luxury and location are what you're after, you can't beat this 5-star resort right in the heart of Cairns Esplanade.

Fitzroy island wharf

2. Fitzroy Island Resort Mid-Range

Sleep out on one of the picturesque Great Barrier Reef Islands! Staying at Fitzroy often works out cheaper than staying in town & means you get more time to explore the reef, beaches, and rainforest walking trails.

Gilligans backpacker resort

3. Gilligan's Backpackers Budget

The best backpacker option for a great vibe in Cairns. Great place to meet like-minded travelers & features a pool, air-con rooms, a huge shared kitchen, & a great common area.

Peppers beach club four mile beach port douglas

4. Pepper's Beach Club Palm Cove

Stay at the best beach resort in the heart of Palm Cove on Cairns's Northern Beaches!

More Waterfalls Near Cairns and the Tablelands

I hope this guide to visiting Big Millstream Falls and Little Millstream Falls has inspired you to explore this hidden gem in Queensland's Tablelands.

If you're a fan of waterfalls, I've written several more hiking and adventure guides to some of the best spots in the region, which you'll find below.

Millstream falls & little millstream falls – complete waterfall guide
Thanks for Reading

I'm Olly Gaspar, adventure traveler from Australia. I’ve spent the last six years traveling the world full-time, sharing my first-hand experiences & photography in over 700 travel guides on We Seek Travel. I visit every destination I write about to bring you unique travel itineraries, epic hiking routes, fun tour ideas, travel & photography gear ideas, & interesting places to stay.

I only make genuine, worthwhile recommendations based on my experience, expertise, & research. If you buy through my links, I may get a commission, supporting this website at no extra cost to you. Read my Publishing Ethics Statement.