Attractions Top Ten
Discover Cairns through our range of the very best Things To Do and see for visitors and locals.
There is something for everyone, from its strong selection of art and performance venues to lively local markets. There are also sophisticated sports arenas, shopping centres, duty-free stores, and many fine dining and casual eateries.
And beyond the city, there is much in between on the way to the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest. This is your ultimate Cairns checklist.
As Cairns moves into Autumn and Winter peak seasons, there is a host of new things to do in the city when the weather is at its clement best.
Try for a stroll through Munro Martin Park to see the latest blooms, or head to the Cairns Botanical Gardens to amble among the rare plant and tree species.
Stay active with a power walk along the Cairns Esplanade or try the Red, Yellow, Blue or Green walking tracks in the Mt Whitfield Conservation Park.
We are totally spoilt for Things To Do In Cairns, and here are the Top 10 Attractions in and around the city and beyond.
Great Barrier Reef
Don’t miss the opportunity to explore this wonder of the world, whether by snorkelling, diving, staying overnight, or doing a day tour to the many islands.
Swim with unique fish between colourful coral reef outcrops in this amazing marine aquarium.
Cairns is the best and most convenient place to launch your reef experience. Check out day tours and overnight stays!
The Daintree is the largest continuous area of tropical rainforest on the mainland and, coupled with the Great Barrier Reef, is easily accessible from Cairns.
Take the chance to walk between towering trees, swim under waterfalls. Next, check wildlife with expert indigenous guides or cruise a river between crocs and mangroves.
Cairns is the ideal starting point for visiting nearby islands for a day tour or to relax and stay overnight.
Among the most popular are Green Island and Fitzroy Island, both of which are short boat trips from Cairns Reef Terminal and offer day-return activities or longer stays.
Snorkelling, diving and underwater reef viewing are available.
Amazing Walking & Hiking Tracks
The four Arrow Circuit tracks through Mt. Whitfield Conservation Park offer stunning views and are home to rainforest, eucalyptus and grasslands.
They range in degree of difficulty and length from 1.5km to 6km and are differentiated in name as Red, Green, Blue and Yellow Arrow.
The Park is behind Cairns Botanic Gardens, a full-day walking and exploring tour in its own right.
For a challenging hike, head to Walsh’s Pyramid. For a more relaxing walk, opt for one of the heritage trails in the Cairns CBD.
White Water Rafting
This popular activity for thrill-seekers is a unique experience to test your endurance and nerve in rapidly flowing waters as part of a team.
Riding an inflatable raft down a raging river is exhilarating and fun. Make your choice between the Barron River, Tully River, and Behana Gorge.
Hot Air Balloons
Dependable weather and stunning scenery over the Atherton Tablelands make ballooning an unforgettable experience.
The activity is suitable almost every day of the year, and an early morning start is perfect for witnessing the sunrise and glorious break-of-day colour hues.
Whether you are an amateur angler or a dedicated fisher, there is fishing of all sorts available for every visitor to Cairns.
It can be done off the beaches and headlands, beside the highway, or from purpose-built reef fishing boats.
And the headline activity loved by movie stars and the rich and famous is Big Game fishing on the outer reef.
The beating heart of all that is fresh and wholesome about Cairns is at this unique market which runs from Friday to Sunday.
It is a must for locals and visitors looking for fresh fruit and produces, from baked bread and cakes, locally made cheeses, and garden pots and flowers.
The atmosphere is family-friendly, and bargains abound.
This village in the rainforest provides a welcome break from the warmer coast. This village is a segue to a wonderland of native animals and birdlife.
This market offers a wide range of local products, indigenous street music performers add to the atmosphere.
Next, don’t miss and the amazing bird and butterfly sanctuaries. Access is via road, rail or Skyrail.
This rural plateau, about 1 hour from Cairns, is a Garden of Eden. Whose arable lands yield exotic fruits and vegetables worldwide.
Its towns are full of character and local and military history.
Check out the Chinese influence in Atherton, Next head to the waterways of Tinaroo Falls Dam and Barron River.