About Great Northern Tours


David and Janet Mead own and have operated “Great Northern Tours’ since 2013 from Cooktown in Far North Queensland Australia. A recent change in operations base in early 2019 has seen the company re-structure and set up a new base in Cairns.

Dave’s infectious enthusiasm for the regions natural beauty, history and world-renowned birdlife has been garnered from many years working and travelling throughout Cape York. A certified 'Wet Tropics' guide and an accredited 'Savannah Guide', David is only too happy to share his local knowledge, in such a beautiful part of Australia.

With a maximum of  4 passengers only  policy, we offer personally guided 'Birdwatching' tours, from half day Cairns area to extended, fully accommodated adventures into Cape York and North West Queensland.

We encourage visitors to participate in pre-tour conversations with us, in regards to their own ideas as to what they would like to see and do whilst travelling with us. Please don't hesitate to contact via email if you are interested in a "tailor-made" private charter. For example, you may be a small group of  birding friends, or a specialist photographer wishing to travel to a more remote area. This direct input and flexible nature of our tours, helps make touring with Great Northern Tours both relaxing and memorable.

As well as specialising in "Birdwatching" guided tours, David is a keen amateur photographer and all photos used on this web-site are his own and his guests and may not be copied or used, without prior permission.

You will travel in style and comfort in our new model 200-series Landcruiser, which is well-equipped with all safety gear, including satellite communications. David holds operator accreditation, Queensland transport driver authorisation, all required National Parks permits, full insurances and has first aid qualifications.


Friends Of Great Northern Tours

Cooktown Accomodation

River of Gold Motel

Conveniently located in the heart of Cooktown (Hope St), providing old fashioned country hospitality and friendly service, tropical salt water pool, fully licensed bar and restaurant.www.riverofgoldmotel.com.au

Sovereign Resort

Set in tropical landscaped gardens, the Sovereign Resort Hotel is a 4-star rated resort, with balcony restaurant, cafe bar and a beautiful free form swimming pool. www.sovereignresort.com.au

Big 4 Holiday Park Cooktown

With just a short stroll to town and set amongst eight acres of award winning gardens, Cooktown Holiday Park has self-contained cabins, units, caravan/ camping sites and can accomodate larger motorhomes/rv's. www.cooktownholidaypark.com.au

Seaview Motel

Located on the historic Endeavour River, the Seaview Motel offers not only stunning views, but also easy access to the centre of town, Cooktown wharf and to the local boat ramp. www.cooktownseaviewmotel.com.au

Birdwatching Lodges

Lotusbird Lodge

Situated on the western boundary of Lakefield National Park, Cape York and comprising ten pole-style cabins nestled on the edge of a freshwater billabong, Lotusbird Lodge is the perfect base for exploring and seeking out some of the areas 200plus listed bird species. www.lotusbird.com.au

Kingfisher Park Birdwatchers Lodge

"Kingfisher Park Birdwatchers Lodge" is a great place to stay at any time of the year. The lodge is located at the base of Mount Lewis Range, in one of the best birding areas in Australia. www.birdwatchers.com.au

Atherton Tablelands Birdwatchers Cabin

The perfect birdwatchers setting, situated on 35 acres of forest to the west of Mt Hypipamee National Park and bordering the Herberton Range National Park. This very private cabin is the ideal 'Birdwatching and Wildlife' accommodation, whilst visiting the Wet Tropics if you like to get away from it all and enjoy the cooler, higher altitude surroundings. www.athertontablelandsbirdwatcherscabin.com.au

Birdwatching Guides

Fine Feather Tours

Based in Mossman North Queensland Australia, Fine Feather Tours is owned and operated by Del Richards, who has accumulated over forty years experience birding in all states of Australia. www.finefeathertours.com.au

Alan's Wildlife Tours

Your naturalist and guide is Alan Gillanders, specialising in tree-kangaroos, birds and nocturnal mammals on the beautiful Atherton Tableland, North Queensland, Australia. www.alanswildlifetours.com.au

Lloyd Nielsen

Lloyd is a well-known birder/author/painter of North Queensland, his site holds a wealth of information, including the best Australian birding books. Here at Great Northern Tours we highly reccomend, for North Queensland visiting birders, Lloyd's latest book release:  "Birds of the Wet Tropics of Queensland & Great Barrier Reef & Where to Find Them" www.birdingaustralia.com.au