Cairns Beaches

So where are all the great Cairns beaches?

Cairns is a beautiful tropical city and Queensland is famously the "sunshine state" of Australia; and if you come from overseas you think of Australia as a sunny country, surrounded by lots of long, sandy beaches.

So your expectations are up and when you get to Cairns there first seem to be no good beaches.

The city beach is muddy and there is a walkway but that's all. No sandy stretch of beach where to lay down and get your tan (not in the city end of it anyway).

Well so it was - until 2003 when they built the Lagoon - now at least there is a place to swim!

The Northern Beaches

But what you may not know about is the northern beaches :-)

Ok, they are not perfect blue-water beaches every day, as some days the the currents stir up mud and make the water look brown. But - there is plenty of sand and places to swim on the northern Cairns beaches!

machans beach

Machans Beach
The first one is Machans Beach, only about ten minutes drive from the city.
It is a beautiful beach, and you would expect concrete highrisers, but instead it is a beautiful sleepy residential suburb.
It's a great place to fish - the river, two creek mouths, or from the beachfront at high tide.

holloways beach

Holloways Beach
The next one is Holloways, and while it's still mostly a quiet suburb with family houses, a few big concrete resorts are already here.

It is a fairly long beach though if you are into exercise, and you can walk at low tide to Machans. Another great one to fish, and there is also a boat ramp.

yorkeys knob

Yorkeys Knob
The next one is Yorkeys Knob and it is a little more commercial. Mostly known for its popular boat club, it is also the place for many cruise ships to stop.
The beach is nice and fairly long, and behind the
casuarinas the concrete resorts are there, although not so visible. 

trinity beach

Trinity Beach
The next one north is Trinity Beach - and that's almost as commercial as it can get on the Cairns northern beaches - with lots of concrete not only on the beachfront but also along the other streets.
The beach is short but popular, obviously with tourists from all the accommodation around.


Kewarra Beach
The next beach north is Kewarra. In a great contrast to Trinity, it is a sleepy residential suburb with only one beach access and the rest of the time you cannot even see the beach. You cannot walk it either, not for long anyway, as a creek mouth cuts it off Clifton Beach and Palm Cove.

clifton beach

Clifton Beach
North of Kewarra is Clifton Beach, with many beach accesses and good views over the beach even from a street back from the beachfront. You really know you are on a beach, as opposed to Kewarra.
Another great thing is you can walk all the way to Palm Cove, and almost to Kewarra. 

palm cove

Palm Cove
North of Clifton is Palm Cove - the biggest concrete jungle of all Cairns beaches.

It is so touristy it is marketed almost like a destination on its own. Although it's like any other one of Cairns beaches - except it has more choice of places to stay.

Machans Beach

Machans Beach is the southernmost one of Cairns Northern Beaches.

It is the closest beach to Cairns.

So you would expect it to be an expensive concrete jungle.
   machans beach australia

Well while it's not cheap to buy a place here, the good thing is there are NO concrete highrisers (not yet, anyway).

It is laid back and beautiful, and even the beach front houses are not millionaires' palaces but totally normal looking homes.
   machans beach

There is a restaurant,
   machans beach restaurant

... a small shop and fuel station,
   machans beach shop

... and Machans Beach post office is super cute.
   machans beach post office

In the northern end of the beach you can walk to Holloways at low tide (on the high tide you may be cut off by a creek mouth).
   machans beach cairns

And in the southern end you can walk along the beach to another creek mouth.

   machans beach queensland

oth mouths are good for fishing at high tide.    
   machans beach boat ramp

Some streets back from the beach is also a boat ramp.

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