Cairns is the bustling hub of Northern Queensland. Cairns holidays place you right at the heart of the action, with an endless choice of activities to enjoy.
With a laid back tropical atmosphere and a variety of bars and restaurants, Cairns is the perfect base from which to explore Tropical North Queensland. Allowing access to the famous Great Barrier Reef, the wilderness of Cape York peninsula and the ancient forests of Cape Tribulation, you will never be stuck for places to discover.
Cairns is a compact city, but there’s plenty to do. The city is known for its locally produced skincare products, which you can pick up from the Saturday Esplanade Market. There’s excellent al fresco dining in Palm Cove to the north, with some trendy bars dotted along the coast for the evenings. Away from the city, Cairns is also the gateway to explore some of Australia’s most diverse and incredible wildlife.
The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest and most breathtaking coral reef, containing 1,500 species of fish and 4,000 molluscs. Of all the things to do in Cairns, exploring the Great Barrier Reef is one of the most exciting. Swim with dwarf minke whales off Port Douglas and meet turtles while you snorkel or dive to explore the reef further.
With the Great Barrier Reef comes many opportunities for adventure; various types of dive show you the different marine life you can encounter in this vast underwater world. Descending into the depths from giant Coral Sea walls, seeing the annual coral spawn, and night-time dives with reef sharks are all possible on holidays to Cairns.
It’s not just the reef that’s on Cairns’ doorstep; the World Heritage-listed Wet Tropics Rainforest surrounds the city. This area is home to one of the planet’s most endangered species, the Southern Cassowary, a flightless bird. Located within the rainforest are volcanic lakes, crystal-clear rivers and waterfalls, and living there are 3,000 species of animals and plants. One of the best ways to see the rainforest in all its glory is on the Kuranda Scenic Railway, which takes you through mountains, past waterfalls and across many spectacular bridges, all with breathtaking views.
Rustic Cape Tribulation is straight out of Robinson Crusoe and is very popular with bushwalkers. The rainforest of Daintree National Park rolls straight down to the coast, where you can relax after a day’s exploring. If you prefer a more relaxed beach stay, head just out of the city to Trinity Beach, and the Northern Beaches where you can enjoy golden sands fringed with palm trees.