Culture and history
The Wet Tropics World Heritage Area is alive with culture and history.
Rainforest Aboriginal Country
Well before the listing of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, Rainforest Aboriginal people managed and cared for, and called the wet tropics region home since time immemorial.
For 18 Rainforest Aboriginal tribal groups, the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area has enormous significance as a living cultural landscape. Their strong and enduring connections to the World Heritage Area mean they have a wealth of knowledge about its plants, animals, landscape and resources.
Rainforest Aboriginal people have been campaigning for recognition of their interests and rights before listing of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area in 1988. To ensure their ongoing cultural survival, they are negotiating for shared management of the World Heritage Area with governments.
Rainforest Aboriginal people are also deriving economic benefits from the World Heritage Area through art and tourism ventures and as land managers caring for their country.
Settlement in and around the Wet Tropics World Heritage has taken many twists and turns and evidence of past settlements and activities are often hard to detect amidst the lush and vibrant forests that now grip and dominate the landscape.
The history of events that lead to the listing of the World Heritage Area span from 1966 to 1988 and are documented in a fascinating chronology.
Not everyone was in favour of proceeding with the listing of the World Heritage Area, and many campaigns were waged for and against; including blockades, protests, legal cases and petitions.
The social impacts of the listing are documented in the book ‘Securing the Wet Tropics’, edited by Geoff McDonald and Marcus Lane.
The Wet Tropics Management Authority also produced an insightful book ‘From the Heart’ in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the listing of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. This colourful book includes contributions from those who were key players in making history.
News and Events
News and Events
Indigenous rangers have led a series of workshops in far north Queensland aimed at creating stronger ties between Rainforest Aboriginal peoples c... READ MORE
A vigorous tree planting session held in March is set to create a critical ecological corridor for Wet Tropics wildlife, linking the tropical coa... READ MORE
The plight of some of Australia's rarest marsupials headline the latest funding splash into the world's oldest rainforest.... READ MORE