Kuranda is a town on the Atherton Tableland in Far North Queensland, Australia, it is from Cairns, via the Kuranda Range road. It is surrounded by tropical rainforest and adjacent to the Wet Tropics World Heritage listed Barron Gorge National Park. It is within the local government area of Shire of Mareeba (between 2008 and 2013, it was within the Tablelands Region). At the 2011 census, Kuranda had a population of 2,966.
The rainforest around Kuranda has been home to the Djabugay people for over 10,000 years. Europeans began to explore the area throughout the nineteenth century. It is believed a massacre of indigenous people took place at the location in Kuranda known as Skeleton Creek. Kuranda was first settled in 1885 and surveyed by Thomas Behan in 1888. Construction of the railway from Cairns to Myola (later Cairns to Herberton) began in 1887 and the line reached Kuranda in 1891. The current railway station was built in 1915.
Kuranda Post Office opened on 25 June 1891 (a Middle Crossing receiving office had been open from 1888). Between 1912 and 1913 Eric Mjöberg lead an expedition to Queensland in which the Kuranda Aboriginal people were observed.
Although coffee was grown around Kuranda in the early twentieth century, timber was the town's primary industry for a number of years. Kuranda has been known as a tourist destination since the early 1900s. It was both the rainforest and local Aboriginals which attracted people to the area. Today Kuranda is a 'village in the rainforest' with tourism being the current backbone of the local economy. The 'village in the rainforest' concept promoted from the 1970s onwards served two purposes. It attracted those seeking a bohemian enclave in which to reside as well as a being a tourist promotional strategy. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s Kuranda was popular with alternative lifestylers, a theme that still runs through the local community today.
The Barron Gorge Hydroelectric Power Station was built nearby in the 1960s.