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Holidays in Clifton Beach
Holiday Travel Guide

Clifton Beach featuring tropical scenes and a garden

This quiet beach north of Cairns offers long stretches of white sand and clear water.

Clifton Beach is a tropical beachside town surrounded by two natural wonders: a World Heritage-listed rain forest and the Great Barrier Reef. The six-kilometre (3.7-mile) beach is lined with palm trees, white sand and clear water. Come to swim, go white-water rafting, wildlife watching, or just unwind in the shade with a drink in one hand and a book in the other.

Clifton Beach is relatively quiet, with fewer tourists than neighbouring beaches and an almost non-existent nightlife. Spend a few hours or a few weeks here. Accommodation options range from budget dormitory-style rooms, to luxury resorts. There are cafés and restaurants, grocery stores and a few specialty retail outlets where you can pick up holiday equipment such as fishing gear and snorkels.

At the beach you’ll find picnic tables, barbecues and play equipment. Feed kangaroos and cuddle a koala at the Cairns Tropical Zoo. Keen golfers can enjoy a game on the local golf course, which is considered one of Australia’s top 50 greens.

Explore the headland of Cape Tribulation and the surrounding Daintree Rainforest on foot, by car or as part of a tour. Walk north along the beach to Palm Cove, a town that offers more bars and restaurants, as well as boutiques and art galleries. Port Douglas is a 45-minute drive north of Clifton Beach. Many tour companies leave from Port Douglas for the Great Barrier Reef, and the town of about 5,000 residents has a thriving backpacker nightlife and fine-dining restaurants.

The weather is warm all year, and hot and humid in summer. Clifton Beach has nets that protect swimmers from harmful marine stingers such as irukandji jellyfish, which are in the waters between November and May. Lifeguards patrol the beach every day during “stinger season”.

Clifton Beach is a 25-minute drive north of Cairns along the Captain Cook Highway. Buses run regularly between Cairns and Palm Cove, stopping at Clifton Beach every hour throughout the day.

Top activities in Clifton Beach

837 Cheap Hotels Near Clifton Beach

Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
4 out of 5
Coral Coast Drive, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$130 per night from 21 Jun. to 21 Jun.
This family-friendly Cairns hotel is located by the ocean, within 1 mi (2 km) of Wet Tropics of Queensland and Palm Cove Beach. Clifton Beach is 2.6 mi (4.1 ...
4.1/5Very Good! (691 reviews)
"Friendly staff comfortable rooms had problem with shower"

Reviewed on 10 Jun. 2021

Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
Imagine Drift Palm Cove
Imagine Drift Palm Cove
4 out of 5
Cnr Veivers Rd Williams Esp, Palm Cove, QLD
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is AU$179 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Located in Palm Cove, this beachfront apartment building is in the entertainment district and within 1 mi (2 km) of Kuranda National Park and Palm Cove Beach. ...
4.3/5Excellent! (491 reviews)
"A nice property, well located with lovely outdoor area and large pool. Our room was facing the street with the car park under it and it was very, very noisy. So check room location when booking. Staff were friendly and helpful."

Reviewed on 7 Jun. 2021

Imagine Drift Palm Cove
Argosy On The Beach
Argosy On The Beach
4 out of 5
119 Arlington Esplanade, Clifton Beach, QLD
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Nestled on the beach, this Clifton Beach apartment building is within a 15-minute walk of Clifton Beach and Palm Cove Beach. Skyrail Rainforest Cableway and ...
4.6/5Wonderful! (111 reviews)
"Wonderful view. You can see and hear waves crashing on the beach across the road. Management very helpful"

Reviewed on 7 Dec. 2020

Argosy On The Beach
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Clifton Beach Flight & Hotel Packages

Edge Apartments Cairns
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Top Clifton Beach Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
4 out of 5
Coral Coast Drive, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$130 per night from 21 Jun. to 21 Jun.
Hotel Grand Chancellor Palm Cove
Imagine Drift Palm Cove
Imagine Drift Palm Cove
4 out of 5
Cnr Veivers Rd Williams Esp, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$179 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Imagine Drift Palm Cove
Argosy On The Beach
Argosy On The Beach
4 out of 5
119 Arlington Esplanade, Clifton Beach, QLD
Argosy On The Beach
Sarayi Boutique Hotel
Sarayi Boutique Hotel
4 out of 5
95 Williams Esplanade, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$168 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Sarayi Boutique Hotel
Agincourt Beachfront Apartments
Agincourt Beachfront Apartments
3.5 out of 5
69-73 Arlington Esplanade Clifton Beach, Clifton Beach, QLD
Agincourt Beachfront Apartments
Clifton Sands Holiday Apartments
Clifton Sands Holiday Apartments
3.5 out of 5
81-87 Guide Street, (Entrance on Clifton Road), Clifton Beach, QLD
Clifton Sands Holiday Apartments
Mantra Amphora
Mantra Amphora
4.5 out of 5
49-63 Williams Esplanade, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$172 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Mantra Amphora
Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore
Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore
5 out of 5
1 Veivers Road, Palm Cove, QLD
The price is AU$499 per night from 16 Jun. to 16 Jun.
Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore
Sand Cay Apartment Within Meters of the Beautiful Clifton Beach
Sand Cay Apartment Within Meters of the Beautiful Clifton Beach
4/79 Arlington Esplanade, Cairns, QLD
Sand Cay Apartment Within Meters of the Beautiful Clifton Beach
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.