Cairns
Culinary & Nightlife

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Our most recommended Cairns Culinary & Nightlife

Cairns Aquarium General Admission Ticket

1. Cairns Aquarium General Admission Ticket

Cairns Aquarium is Australia’s newest and most spectacular aquarium. It is the only aquarium in the world to exclusively showcase the stunning aquatic wildlife from tropical North Queensland’s two World Heritage-listed areas – the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics Rainforest. Experience the spectacular diversity of the region without the need to get wet or even leave the city. Travel through ten amazing North Queensland ecosystems from the world’s most ancient rainforest to the world’s largest coral reef to discover 71 different exhibits showcasing the extremely rare and incredibly unique species of this region. See a panorama of wildlife and marine fish that create an underwater world filled with a kaleidoscope of colour. Enjoy daily talks and presentations by knowledgeable and entertaining educators, marvel at the animal feeding sessions and get a hands-on experience at the marine and reptile touch tanks. Complete your day at Cairns Aquarium with breakfast, lunch or dinner at Aqualuna restaurant.

Cairns: Daintree, Mossman Gorge & Cape Trib Tour & Cruise

2. Cairns: Daintree, Mossman Gorge & Cape Trib Tour & Cruise

Embark on a day trip where the rainforest meets the reef. See natural sights including the Great Barrier Reef, experience a wildlife cruise, and participate in a smoke ceremony as you go. Start your adventure with a scenic coastal drive from Cairns to Port Douglas, the far north’s very own great ocean road with panoramic views of the sparkling Coral Sea. The first stop is Mossman Gorge, which is in the southern sector of the world-famous Daintree National Park. The gorge has been carved out by the cold mountain waters of the Mossman River, which winds through large granite boulders, bordered by lush green rainforest. It’s a magical place and you’ll be welcomed by the traditional owners, the Kuku Yalanji people, who will also cleanse you of evil spirits during a smoke ceremony. Also, enjoy a refreshing swim in the cascading waters. Cross the mighty Daintree River and head to the beach for lunch. Experience waterfront dining and enjoy the sand between your toes. After lunch, it’s time to explore the ancient rainforest environment on an interesting guided tour of the Marrdja Botanical Boardwalk. Highly trained guides will give expert rainforest interpretation, which will inform and impress. Be amazed at the huge diversity you will encounter, you will discover everything from low-lying ferns and shrubs, to the massive rainforest canopy and even mangrove ecosystems - all in one short easy walk. You can choose to taste locally made ice cream, at your own cost, and prepare for a photo opportunity at the Alexandra Range Lookout, which provides sweeping views over the Daintree River, its rainforest delta, and out to the Coral Sea. In the afternoon, experience a wildlife cruise on the river. During the cruise, you may see a crocodile, while learning about the fragile ecosystem of this impressive serpent-like river system. On the return journey to Cairns, drive through Port Douglas, a picturesque beachside village with a laid-back vibe and loads of bars and cafes.

Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Full-Day Tour with Lunch

3. Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Full-Day Tour with Lunch

Tour the Outer Great Barrier Reef by boat with time to snorkel and explore this world-famous National Park. Complement your experience with a gourmet buffet lunch, glass of wine, and a light snack. Board your high-speed vessel, and visit some of the most beautiful spots in the Outer Great Barrier Reef. Enjoy a seamless experience with knowledgeable staff to ensure a safe and fun-filled tour. Stop at 2 spectacular Outer Great Barrier Reef destinations and snorkel with equipment and lessons provided. Feel free to jump in the water and explore this natural wonder up close. Later, sit down for a delicious barbecue lunch with salad before taking off for the second half of the tour.

Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Pontoon with Activities

4. Cairns: Outer Great Barrier Reef Pontoon with Activities

Sit back and relax on a catamaran cruise from Cairns to the Great Barrier Reef, where you enjoy a raft of water activities from Moore Reef's pontoon. Encounter an outstanding landscape of marine life, enjoy a choice of activities including snorkeling, including a visit to the underwater observatory. Prior to departure from the marina, sip on some complimentary tea and coffee. Depart from Cairns’ Marlin Marina at 9:30 AM and enjoy a cruise out of the harbor. Witness the stunning landscape before the catamaran makes its way out to open seas. Sail in air-conditioned comfort onboard the catamaran to the state-of-the-art activity pontoon at Moore Reef. Moore Reef is a prime location on the Outer Great Barrier Reef, abundant with soft corals and marine life. Learn about the reef and its diverse ecosystems on the outward journey with presentations given by resident marine experts. Upon arrival at the pontoon at 11:30 AM, choose from an array of activities suitable for both swimmers and non-swimmers alike. Make use of the inclusive snorkeling equipment, with wetsuits and lycra also available at an additional charge. Alternatively, watch the daily fish feeding presentations, or take a trip on the glass bottom boat or semi-submersible tour with marine experts providing commentary. Soak up the rays on a spacious sun deck, or make a splash on a theme park-style waterslide. See the reef without getting wet in the underwater observatory, and get up close and personal with marine creatures like sea cucumbers and starfish.

Paronella Park, Lake Barrine, and Milla Milla Falls Day Tour

5. Paronella Park, Lake Barrine, and Milla Milla Falls Day Tour

Departure from Cairns, we head south travelling past Walsh’s Pyramid, one of the largest naturally formed pyramids in the world. Here your guide will stop so you can grab a photo of this unique North Queensland landmark. Now it’s time to travel up the World Heritage listed Gillies Highway climbing 730 metres above sea level whilst enjoying the breathtaking views over the Goldsborough Valley. Just before the top of the amazing Gillies Range is a short photo opportunity at the Heales Lookout before heading into the gorgeous Atherton Tablelands. Our first stop is beautiful World Heritage Listed Lake Barrine Crater Lake National Park. On arrival, your tour guide will take you on a short walk to visit the 1000-year-old Twin Kauri Pines, true giants of the rainforest. Enjoy a Wonderful Devonshire Morning Tea, before we depart and head to the historical town of Yungaburra. This beautiful village is recognised as having the most Nationally Listed Heritage buildings in Queensland. Here your guide will take you on a driving tour around this quaint town showcasing the many Nationally Heritage buildings. Next stop is The Curtain Fig Tree located in the Curtain Fig Tree National Park. This amazing feat of nature reaching 45+ metres up into the tropical rainforest canopy. Here your guide will guide you around on the boardwalk interpreting the amazing formation of this 600-800-year old epiphyte while also looking out for endemic wildlife species in the rainforest canopy, like the rare Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo. From here, we will head through the historical dairy town of Malanda, home to Australia’s oldest continuously running commercial picture theatre. Your guide will drive you around this charming town showcasing the beautiful old pub & theatre. Travelling through extensive beef, dairy, sugar cane & other diverse types of farming areas, we arrive at Millaa Millaa Falls – one of Australia’s most photographed waterfalls. Here you will have an option of swimming under the cool waters falling 20 metres over an ancient volcanic lava flow formed over 1 million years ago or you can sit back, relax & enjoy the tranquility of nature. Now it’s time to descend from the mountains down the Palmerstone Highway through sugar cane & banana fields to the coastal town of Innisfail, where we enjoy our delicious Lunch. Paronella Park is the next destination with a 45-minute guided tour in English, Chinese or Japanese. The tour will guide you through the extensive National Trust Gardens while learning the rich history of Hose Paronella’s wonderful achievements & his colourful history of how he built his Spanish Castle in the rainforest; you will have amazing photo opportunities of the breathtaking Mena Creek & Theresa falls & much more. We spend approx 2.5 hours here allowing plenty of free time to enjoy the rest of the park at a leisurely pace after the guided walk. We then make our way back to Cairns.

From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Snorkeling and Diving Tour

6. From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Snorkeling and Diving Tour

Explore the stunning biodiversity of the outer Great Barrier Reef on this diving and snorkeling tour from Cairns. Sail on s boat 3 sun decks, 2 air-conditioned indoor saloons, a spacious dive deck, and a sunken platform for easy water access. Have drinks and a packed lunch. Depart Cairns in the morning for the outer reef on this 8-hour tour. Whether you are a snorkeler, first-time SCUBA diver, or already certified diver, join a once in a lifetime adventure aboard a luxury day trip to the great barrier reef. Enjoy a light morning tea and a delicious pre-packed picnic lunch. Complimentary tea, coffee, and chilled water are served throughout the day (snacks, soft and alcoholic beverages are also available for purchase). Discover the Great Barrier Reef in the easiest way possible: with a snorkel - it is as simple as breathing. If you have never snorkeled before, don't worry, a briefing is held on board, explaining how to put and use the snorkeling gear. The private reef locations are approximately 70 kilometers (about 43 miles) offshore, these unique sites offer superb coral formations and an abundance of coral and marine life including inquisitive Nemos, Turtles, Stingrays and Wally the friendly Maori Wrasse. Visit 2 different reef locations daily, these are chosen en-route considering weather and sea conditions to ensure the best in-water experience. Visit either Normank, Saxon or Hastings Reef.

From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Cruise by Premium Catamaran

7. From Cairns: Great Barrier Reef Cruise by Premium Catamaran

Hop aboard a catamaran for a day trip to remember to the Great Barrier Reef. Snorkel, dive, or swim in the water, enjoy a delicious buffet lunch, and take in the marine wildlife. Meet your crew at the Cairns Reef Fleet Terminal, pay the reef levy, and hop aboard the luxury catamaran. The crew will select reef locations depending on the day's conditions from Flynn and Milne reef or further north at Norman and Hastings reefs. All offer diverse reef structures teeming with exotic marine life. Feel the wind in your hair as you set sail for the outer Great Barrier Reef. Relax with morning tea on the way, get to know the crew and learn all about the marine eco-system from a marine expert. Review snorkeling techniques with the crew during the journey. Arrive at the first outer reef location, where you can snorkel, dive or swim in the water. You may also choose to sunbathe, or chill on the boat on the upper sun deck or the netted deck trampoline at the bow of the boat. You can avail complimentary guided tours from the staff. A dedicated dive tender is available for experienced certified divers who want to explore deeper waters. All certified divers receive a complimentary dive guide. First-time divers will receive a free 10-minute scuba instruction in the water from qualified PADI professionals. Savor a fresh tropical buffet lunch prepared onboard. Treat yourself to a selection of hot and cold dishes including buffet meats, salads, and tropical fruit. Travel to the second outer reef location for the day for your choice of activity. Look out for corals, exotic marine life such as parrotfish, reef turtles and 'nemo' fish. End the day as the captain hoists the sails, and cruise back to Cairns. Enjoy a cold drink from the bar (own expense) and relax on the boom netting. Alternatively, watch presentations about the marine life from the passionate eco-certified staff.

Cairns: Guided Twilight Tour of the Aquarium with Dinner

8. Cairns: Guided Twilight Tour of the Aquarium with Dinner

Witness the setting of the sun on Tropical North Queensland’s mountain ranges and experience how steamy rainforests and shallow reef lagoons begin to stir with life. Reptiles, Amphibians, Insects, and nocturnal fish sense the onset of dusk and emerge from their day time lairs.  Get an insight into the unique changes of the region’s nocturnal creatures as they move in the shadows.  Complete your evening at Dundee’s Restaurant with a perfectly matched dining experience while you enjoy a stunning sea life backdrop.

Cairns: Outer and Coral Cay Snorkel and Dive Cruise

9. Cairns: Outer and Coral Cay Snorkel and Dive Cruise

Step foot on a super-fast, luxury 20m CAT, feeling welcomed and pampered, and embark on an ocean-filled journey of discovery. After your early boarding from Marlin Marina, breathe in the morning ocean breeze as you sail to one of two snorkel and dive destinations. From there, explore the ocean's brilliant fish and coral reefs. At the stunning Upolu Coral Cay Reef, learn about graceful blue-spotted stingrays, tenacious green sea turtles, bright damsel fish, and other amazing creatures that call this reef their home, as you observe them from a glass bottom boat. You’ll then have the chance to see these inquisitive creatures up close, while snorkeling within the incredibly clear, turquoise water. The second snorkel and dive site is the fascinating ‘Wonder Wall’, located on the outer edge of Upolu Reef. Enjoy snorkeling on the top of the wall for easy viewing of all the marine life and coral. Sign-up for the optional, certified or introductory guided dive, encountering a huge variety of aquatic flora and fauna, including hard and soft corals, giant clams, fans, turtles and a vast assortment of colorful tropical fish as you descend and meander along the side of the wall .  In between visiting these two sites, enjoy a smorgasbord lunch fit for a king. Savor smoked salmon, prawns, three types of cold meat, a chicken platter, three fresh salads and a variety of breads. After a relaxed six hours of diving and snorkeling, spend the trip home indulging in even more delicious food, arriving back at Cairns at around 4:30 PM.

Cape Tribulation, Daintree and Mossman Gorge Day Tour

10. Cape Tribulation, Daintree and Mossman Gorge Day Tour

The itinerary for this tour is as follows: • 6:45 AM: Hotel pickups commence from Cairns. • 7:30 AM: Pickups commence from the Cairns Beaches. • 8:10 AM: Pickups commence from Port Douglas. • 9:20 AM: Mossman Gorge Centre. Visit the Mossman Gorge Gateway Centre and board your shuttle for the transfer into Mossman Gorge. Your driver/guide will take you for a guided walk sharing their knowledge of this enchanting rainforest environment. Learn about the fascinating secrets of one of the world’s oldest rainforests. Return to the Centre for morning tea. • 11:15 AM: Daintree River Cruise. Reach an understanding of this wildlife environment for one hour. See bird habitats, tree snakes, unique plants and of course the saltwater crocodile. • 12:45 PM: Tropical Lunch. With special access at a private rain forest property, enjoy a short walk along a delightful rain forest creek before a delicious tropical lunch. Enjoy a choice of quality steak, fish or vegetarian meal with fresh salads and fruit platter, followed by coffee or Daintree Tea. • 2:00 PM: Cape Tribulation. Walk on this world-renowned rainforest beach and admire the coastline and fringing coral reef from the Kulki Lookout. • 3:15 PM: Daintree Ice Cream Company. Included is an afternoon refreshment at the Daintree Ice Cream Company. Enjoy a delicious tropical fruit ice cream made from fruit grown on their own organic orchard. • 4:00 PM: Alexandra Lookout. After winding through the rainforest of the Alexandra Range, enjoy this spectacular lookout over the Daintree River estuary, Snapper Island, and beyond to the Coral Sea.

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What people are saying about Cairns

Carlos was an amazing guide and made the day really special and wowed me with his knowledge, enthusiasm, and love of the area. Would definitely recommend since the food and activities were fun and well worth it. Saw lots of amazing wildlife too.

It was amazing. Shane was great and so knowledgeable about the area and the wildlife and really went out of his way to make the experience memorable. Had a fabulous time and am so glad I did this trip.

What a great experience. The whole day was excellent and great value for money. The staff were great and food was great. I can recommend this crew highly.

Lovely day exploring our amazing country. The guide Mark was lovely and had a wealth of knowledge.

Lovely place! Very enjoyed the sea world!! Love it