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Cairns

Enjoy year-round tropical weather in this laid-back city, situated on the doorstep of the world-famous Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. 

Cairns is a popular destination to explore Tropical North Queensland. The small, laid-back city has waterfront parks, shops and restaurants, is surrounded by rainforests and lies within close proximity to two World Heritage sites.

Cairns is the gateway city to the pristine 135-million-year-old Daintree Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef. The Great Barrier Reef is the largest reef system in the world and home to a colourful and diverse marine life. Admire the reef as part of a snorkel or dive tour organised in the city centre. If you would rather stay dry, many tour boats have a glass bottom so you can marvel at the view beneath you. A short drive north will take you to the Daintree Rainforest, where you can explore one of the most biologically diverse areas on the globe.

Just outside Cairns is Barron Gorge National Park. See the rainforest at ground level along the many footpaths or admire the deep gorges and waterfalls from the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. Glide over the forest canopy before arriving at Kuranda, known as the Village in the Rainforest. Include a visit to the nearby Tjapukai Aboriginal Culture Park where you can throw a boomerang, blow into a didgeridoo and watch a dance show.

Discover native Australian animals at Cairns Tropical Zoo, such as koalas and wombats. To see North Queensland’s native crocodiles, head to Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures, where you can get close enough to feed them.

The coastline around Cairns features many beautiful beaches. Drive north to get to the unspoiled Trinity Beach, Clifton Beach and stylish Palm Cove Beach.

Back in Cairns, round off your day with a dip in the Esplanade Lagoon, a stroll along the Marlin Marina and then join the locals at the city’s Esplanade, the perfect place for an evening barbeque.


Guide to Exploring Cairns


Top Hotel Deals

See all 248 Hotels in Cairns
Koala Beach Resort

Koala Beach Resort

137 To 139 Lake Street, Cairns
2.1
of 5, from 10 reviews
2.0 out of 5.0

Located in Cairns Central Business District, this hotel is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) from The Cultural Place and within 3 mi (5 km) of Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens and Mount Whitfield Conservation Park. Cairns Night Markets and Jute Theatre are also within 10 minutes.

AU$182
Shangri-La Hotel, The Marina

Shangri-La Hotel, The Marina

Pierpoint Road, Cairns
4.2
of 5, from 512 reviews
5.0 out of 5.0

With its location directly on Marlin Marina, above Pier Shopping Complex, and next to the Esplanade, this hotel is within 1 km of Cairns's city center, convention venue, and watercraft tour terminals.

AU$138
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cairns

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cairns

121-123 The Esplanade & Florence St, Cairns
4.1
of 5, from 568 reviews
4.5 out of 5.0

Located in Cairns Central Business District, this luxury hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Cairns Esplanade and within 3 mi (5 km) of Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens and Mount Whitfield Conservation Park. Center of Contemporary Arts and Jute Theatre are also within 5 minutes.

AU$167
Hilton Cairns

Hilton Cairns

34 Esplanade, Cairns
4.1
of 5, from 505 reviews
5.0 out of 5.0

Overlooking Trinity Inlet in the heart of Cairns, this hotel is a few minutes' walk to city center shopping. Cairns Airport is 8 km (5 mi) away.

AU$130
Park Regis City Quays

Park Regis City Quays

6 Lake Street, Cairns
3.6
of 5, from 55 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

Located in Cairns Central Business District, this hotel is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) from Cairns Convention Centre and 2.9 mi (4.6 km) from Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens. Cairns Zoom and Wildlife Dome and Cairns Harbour Cruises are also within 10 minutes.

AU$163
Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort

Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort

122 Lake St, Cairns
3.8
of 5, from 415 reviews
4.5 out of 5.0

This family-friendly Cairns hotel is located near the beach, steps from Center of Contemporary Arts, Jute Theatre, and Kick Contemporary Arts. Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens and Mount Whitfield Conservation Park are also within 3 mi (5 km).

AU$134
Rydges Plaza Cairns

Rydges Plaza Cairns

Corner Grafton And Spence Streets, Cairns
3.1
of 5, from 102 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

Located in Cairns Central Business District, this hotel is 0.3 mi (0.4 km) from The Cultural Place and 2.6 mi (4.2 km) from Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens. Cairns Zoom and Wildlife Dome and Cairns Harbour Cruises are also within 10 minutes.

AU$117
Cairns Plaza Hotel

Cairns Plaza Hotel

145 The Esplanade, Cairns
4.1
of 5, from 169 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Located in Cairns, this hotel is 0 mi (0.1 km) from Muddy's Playground and within 3 mi (5 km) of Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens and Mount Whitfield Conservation Park. St Monica's Cathedral and Cairns Esplanade are also within 10 minutes.

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