Best Things to Do in Cairns (Australia)

Best Things to Do in Cairns, Tropical North Queensland’s Cairns is a bustling tourist destination that attracts visitors from all over the world.

The city is known for its pleasant winters, gorgeous beaches, breathtaking scenery, exciting nightlife, and abundance of exciting things to do. Cairns is a must-see if you’re in Queensland!

Best Things to Do in Cairns


See lava up close and personal

Normally, seeing lava up close and personal would not be someone’s idea of fun, but this attraction is completely secure! You can take guided tours inside an extinct volcano at the Undara Volcanic National Park to see the astounding Undara Lava Tubes.

Only 23 nations have lava tubes, and those in Undara are thought to be the longest in the entire world.

Other enjoyable activities at Undara include the Wildlife at Sunset tour, staying the night in a pioneer hut or swag tent village, and attending exciting events like Opera in the Outback.

Visit the rainforest in style with the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway

The 7.5 km Skyrail Rainforest Cableway spans the breathtaking, UNESCO-designated lush rainforest in the Barron Gorge National Park.

The Skyrail is a very relaxing way to be able to travel through the rainforest in style, and the views are quite extraordinary beautiful.

There are many different cableway gondolas available, including ones with glass bottoms so you can see the rainforest beneath you.

A fascinating Rainforest Interpretation Center and Aboriginal cultural walking tours are both available from the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway Barron Falls Station, where you can learn more about what you’re seeing.

Best Things to Do in Oliveira de Azeméis

Enjoy a taste of paradise at Port Douglas

A charming seaside town, Port Douglas is located just north of Cairns.

Although it can be pricey, you’ll enjoy the town’s boutique stores and restaurants if you have money to burn.

The town itself is a lovely place for a romantic getaway, some beachside fun at Four Mile Beach, or just wandering around the town taking in the atmosphere and learning about its fascinating history.

It’s much closer to the Daintree Rainforest than Cairns is, and it’s also a great spot to base yourself when visiting the Great Barrier Reef.

You can take a beautiful walk from Four Mile Beach past the Port Douglas Lighthouse and up to Flagstaff Hill for a breathtaking view.

Hit the clubs at Lyquid Nightlife

Young backpackers from all over the world are hugely popular in Cairns, and a fantastic nightlife scene has emerged to meet their needs. Of the many fantastic venues nearby, Lyquid is thought to be the best nightclub in town.

It has a gorgeous entrance with a water swirl theme and is very upscale inside. It’s a great place to meet and socialize with active tourists from all over the world.

Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the Night Markets or Rusty’s Market

You might be in the mood for some city fun after taking in the tranquility of locations like Green Island and the Tablelands, and Cairns’ markets are the perfect place for it.

The Cairns Night Markets are open every day of the year from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., with the food court open from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

There is a wide selection of mementos, mouthwatering food stands, and the creations of regional artists and designers.

On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, Rusty’s Market opens at 5 a.m. This farmer’s market has long been a center of the Cairns foodie scene, so it’s worth getting up early to take advantage of the freshest produce that Tropical North Queensland has to offer.

Green Island

One of the most popular tourist destinations in Cairns is Green Island, a coral cay that is only 300 meters wide and 650 meters long. It is located 27 kilometers off the coast of Cairns and is part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park World Heritage Area.

It’s the ideal location for unwinding and taking advantage of Australian beach life thanks to the pristine white sand beaches, lush rainforest, and crystal-clear waters.

The Green Island Resort, one of the world’s most environmentally conscious resorts, is a choice for overnight stays and offers cruises to the island.


Visit the Tablelands

A beautiful place to spend a few days is the highland region of the Atherton Tablelands, which is 30 minutes outside of Cairns.

If you’re looking for a place that is truly serene, picturesque, relaxing, and unspoiled, they are less tourist-heavy than Cairns, which can be a welcome change of pace.

The Tablelands’ higher altitude results in a more temperate climate than Cairns and lower humidity, making it a very comfortable summer getaway; similarly to Cairns, the winters are mild.

The Tablelands are dotted with many adorable small towns, and despite being more peaceful than Cairns, there is still a lot to do there: the Tableland Express steam excursion, the Hou Wang Miau Chinese Temple, and the Gallo Dairyland dairy farm.

Dolphin and whale-watching

You’ve come to the right place if you like watching dolphins and whales because Cairns is known for having an abundance of marine life.

Several tour operators offer cruise tours, and depending on the time of your visit, you’ll find a wide variety of species here.

With 35% of the world’s total number of living species of whales and dolphins calling the Great Barrier Reef home, it serves as a breeding sanctuary for cetaceans (whales and dolphins).

In particular, during the months of July through September, 2,000 humpback whales travel 10,000 km round trip from the waters of Antarctica to Cairns to give birth and nurse their calves. These enormous mammals are a magnificent sight to behold.

Learn about indigenous culture at the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park

The first custodians of the land run this award-winning cultural park, which tells their creation story using actors and high-tech holograms.

You can also paddle a canoe, participate in a corroboree by the fire, and do a lot more.

It’s both a very instructive and enjoyable experience.


Daintree Rainforest

One of Australia’s most picturesque locations, the Daintree Rainforest is home to an abundance of flora and fauna, including the vast majority of the country’s bat and butterfly species.

The Daintree tells the story of this amazing site and is a delight for nature lovers and scientists alike. It’s also amazing to simply enjoy the breathtaking walking trails, waterfalls, and forest and coastal views, as Australian flora and fauna evolved largely in isolation.

Enjoy a refreshing swim at the Crystal Cascades

A hidden gem of Tropical North Queensland, The Crystal Cascades is a freshwater swimming hole with numerous small waterfalls flowing into substantial pools. It is tucked away in a tropical rainforest.

Swimming in a pool surrounded by a tranquil, serene rainforest is a truly magical experience of Australian nature. The area has BBQ and picnicking facilities.

Palm Cove

The best beach in Cairns is located in the charming seaside community of Palm Cove.

The paperback palms that beautifully line the Esplanade gave the village its name.

It’s a great place for a leisurely day of sun, sand, and surf, and kayaking, snorkeling, and scuba diving are also very popular there.

A 9-hole golf course is also nearby, just 1 km away from the beach if you play golf.

Kuranda Scenic Railway

The Scenic Railway travels from Cairns to the nearby town of Kuranda, passing through breathtaking scenery like a forest that is listed on the World Heritage List.

The railroad, which is now used as a tourist railroad but was initially built more than 120 years ago as a commuter railroad.

Due to the breathtaking scenery and short one-way travel time, this trip is a must-see while visiting Cairns.


Cairns Botanical Gardens

The plant life in the Botanical Gardens is notably different from that in botanic gardens in cooler climates, and it is regarded as having one of Australia’s best displays of tropical plants.

The grounds are also home to a variety of native animals and birds, walking trails, and educational tours where you can learn more about the species you’ll find in the Gardens.

Fun Things To Do & Places To Visit In Tulsa

Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef, the world’s biggest coral reef, is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Beautifully colored coral and an abundance of marine life make this place ideal for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.

There are still lots of things to do at the Reef if you’d rather stay on dry land, including the semi-sub and the underwater observatory. You can even mail a postcard from the only Australia Post postbox there.