Cairns Activities

On this page you have some ideas for Cairns activities.

Cairns may not have a lot of museums and real tourist attractions, but it is a great city for a lot of different outdoors activities

It has a perfect climate and it is close to beautiful tropical rainforests and coral reef - perfect place to enjoy snorkelling and diving, kayaking, sailing, fishing, horse riding, bird watching just to name a few

Water Based Activities


Snorkelling and Scuba Diving
Snorkelling and scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef are some of the most popular Cairns activities. 
If you are visiting from other states, a Great Barrier Reef trip is a must. The reef is closest to the land up here so all the different trips and tours are cheaper than further south in Queensland.

cairns sailing

Sailing in Cairns
Sailing is always a great way to spend a day. There is a sailing club in the northern end of the Esplanade. 
And there are some great sailing tours that depart from Cairns marina and go to  Green Island,
Fitzroy Island, the Outer Great Barrier Reef, and Low Isles outside Port Douglas.

cairns activities

Other Water Sports 
Cairns is an excellent place for all sorts of water sports from kayaking and canoeing to water skiing, jet boating, parasiling, kite surfing, cable skiing, white water rafting etc. 
There are plenty of places for water sports along the whole coast of Cairns as well as Northern Beaches.

cairns fishing tours

Cairns Fishing Tours
You can join a fishing tour, or hire a boat (there is a place in the Marina). 
There are different tours that can take you out to the reef, or into Trinity Inlet and mangrove habitat in river mouths, where you may even spot a crocodile. Most fishing tours depart from wharfs B, C and D at the marina.

Other Activities

cairns horse riding

Horse Riding
Different companies do horse riding trips in the rainforests west of Cairns,
in Goldsborough Valley in Wooroonooran National Park, in Cape Tribulation, and on Wonga Beach in Daintree National Park.
It is a great way to enjoy those beautiful places if you are into horse riding

cairns bicycle tours

Bicycle Tours
There are also bicycle tours in and around Cairns, and some even go to southern parts of Cape York, to Port Douglas, Laura and Cooktown.
They follow the cyclists in a vehicle that carries all the supplies, spare parts and whatever else is needed.


cape york motorcycle adventures

Motorbike Tours

Motorbike tours are very popular and most of the ones that start in Cairns go to some parts of Cape York peninsula.

Some go to southern Cape York such as Lakefield National Park, Laura, Lions Den and Cooktown, while others go to the Tip of Australia and even do the Old Telegraph Track.

cairns adventures

Other Adventures
There are plenty of more
Cairns activities and adventures that you can enjoy in and around Cairns, such as skydiving, bungy jumping, jungle swinging, parasailing, cable skiing, jet boating, white water rafting, hot air ballooning, and taking scenic plane, seaplane and helicopter flights.

Cairns Sailing

Cairns sailing means sailing above and around coral reef!

It means sailing around the largest coral reef in the world - the Great Barrier Reef.

The waters are bright blue and you can see large turtles, whales, dugongs, dolphins and other beautiful marine animals, and of course, lots of islands and lots of coral reef.

The whole experience is just great!

Sailing Trips

green island

Sail from Cairns to Green Island
This trip departs from Cairns with a morning tea. On Green Island, you get to
snorkel or dive to watch corals, and then eat buffet lunch. Then you get to enjoy the beaches and rainforest, visit the Marineland Melanesia and see the world's largest captive crocodile.

low isles

Sail from Cairns to Low Isles
A 30 metres luxury sailing catamaran with a fully licensed bar will take you to Low Isles, where you can swim, snorkel or watch corals from a glass bottomed boat. A marine biologist is onboard and there are also good chances to see dugongs and green turtles.

cairns outer reef

Sail from Cairns to Outer Great Barrier Reef
A Cairns sailing trip to Oyster Reef to dive and snorkel. Great Barrier Reef is a great place to scuba dive - you can watch the coral life - colourful fish, giant clams, small sharks. Both introductory and certified dives available. Or you can just snorkel. Buffet lunch included.

Trips in Whitsundays

sailing whitsundays

Sail around in Whitsundays
This is obviously out of Cairns area, but I had to mention - Australia's number one sailing destination is the beautiful Whitsundays. This is a full day sailing trip through Whitsunday Islands on a fast catamaran, all meals, refreshments and snorkelling included.

All the tour details are in the Destination Guide.

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Plan Your Trip... the FREE Cape York Travel Pocket Guide

Get this 50 pages guide totally for FREE. It contains information that helps you getting started with planning of your trip. You get to make early-stages desicions such as when to go, how long time you should take, how to get there and get around, where to stay (general info), what will it cost.. and a short insight to what is there to see and do in Cape York.

Plan and Bring to the Trip... the full Destination Cape York Travel Guide

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This complete 300 pages travel guide is all you need before and during your trip. Besides the background chapters on the peninsula's history and wildlife; and the comprehensive detail about all the places (down to prices, opening hours and full contact detail), it has invaluable information on at least 10 four wheel drive tracks, at least 30 guaranteed FREE camping spots on the Cape (and at least 150 on your way to the Cape), at least 40 best swimming holes, all mapped; as well as practical things - from fuel, roads, wireless internet and mobile phone reception, how to deal with the national parks booking rules; and Aboriginal land entrance and camping permits and alcohol restrictions - to vehicle preparation and accessories and necessary recovery gear by my vehicle-recovery-guy partner). Not to mention locals' tips on how to spot that croc and palm cockatoo ;-)

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