There's silence and there's silence. Most of us only experience the pure stillness in the wilderness rarely and briefly, but to have it wrap itself like velvet around your ears hour after hour – all just a short boat ride from buzzing Noosa - is something of a miracle.
The true Noosa Everglades are reached by launching out from the spectacular Lake Cootharaba, about 20 minutes motor cruise up the Noosa River from Gympie Terrace. This massive body of water at some 10km long and 5km wide is a major water feature in the region, but it is so shallow most of the year, you could actually walk across it. On a still day, its like a giant sheet of sky-coloured glass. The wonder only increases as you head into the tannin stained waters of the Noosa River wetlands. For those looking to make the most of it, canoes are the way to go. The dark, still waters are perfect for such gentle movement. Dipping oars, dripping water and your breathing are the only intrusions on the meditative quiet of nature in its purest state.
The tea-coloured water ensures the perfect reflections of the surrounding landscape are held in the water like you're gliding on a mirror, images are scattered only by the passage of your canoe, a falling leaf or, a bird skitting across the surface - amazingly, 44% of Australia's birds spend at least part of their time here, more than in Kakadu. Paddle a little and glide over the river's serpentine course, sit back and take it in. You can feel the layers dropping off and floating behind you in your wake.
Noosa Everglades Discovery run a 2 night/3 day self-guided tour (they provide everything you need if you are not equipped), departing Noosaville regularly and with pick-ups and drop-offs for Noosa accommodation. You will head up the Everglades to the Heritage-listed former logger's spot known as Harry's Hut. Here, excellent camping facilities ensure visitors can really infuse the serenity. Discovery Group was recently inducted into the Queensland Tourism Hall of Fame, and has won numerous awards for its nature-sensitive tours in the region. Now they bring their vision and expertise to the Everglades. Lucky us. A wake-up cuppa on the banks of the Noosa River, a liquid mirror before you, bird sounds the only intrusion.....let the wilderness soak in to your very soul.