Bring the family, your friends or your significant other to this Australian paradise and you’ll find the obvious attractions nestled alongside hidden treasures. Man made lagoons, rainforest waterfalls, ocean reefs and island beaches; Cairns and its surrounds are home to every kind of tropical watering hole you could imagine. If you like to lounge or watch the kids splash about, cool off in the crystal clear waters of the Cairns Esplanade Lagoon in the heart of the CBD. To chase waterfalls, hire a car and head south to the Wooroonooran National Park where you’ll find the deep rockpools of Josephine Falls.
The ways to see the Great Barrier Reef are endless so head down to the Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal and take your pick of glass-bottomed boats, snorkel safaris, diving days out or even helicopter tours that’ll drop you off for a dip. Thrill-seekers can get an entirely different view of the reef with skydiving tours that pick you up in the CBD and drop you off over the reef for a glide.
For an introduction to the area’s rich history and indigenous traditions, Mandingalbay Yidinji guided culture tours and traditionally inspired feasts also depart from the Terminal to take you east across the Trinity Inlet and deep into their diverse and ancient lands.
To sample some exotic Australian tropical fruit, visit Rusty’s Produce Market in Cairns' lively centre. For native Australian flavours, the adventurous Ochre Restaurant serves up a contemporary take on regional produce. Seafood lovers can find a fun feast onboard the Prawn Star - a trawler turned restaurant.
Need some extra fresh air? Head for the hills and hop on the Kuranda Scenic Railway which takes you from Cairns to some of the oldest rainforests on earth - The Wet Tropics. Take a drive instead and follow the signs to one of the many lush walking tracks that surround Cape Tribulation, like the Dubuji Boardwalk or Mardja Botanical Walk. With everything from rainforest to the reef, there are so many ways to spend your days in the tropical surrounds of Cairns.