Tropical North Queensland is home to some of the most magical scenery in the world. From stunning natural wonders and lush green rainforests, to aqua blue lagoons and white sandy beaches, there’s a veritable bounty of Insta-worthy locations right on your doorstep when staying in Cairns.
Grab your camera (or Smartphone) and inject some tropical vibes into your Insta feed at these incredible places.
DAINTREE RAINFOREST BOARDWALK
The Daintree Rainforest may be the oldest rainforest in the world – 180 million years old to be exact – but her looks have not faded with age. No vacation in Cairns would be complete without visiting this ancient natural wonder, and it definitely deserves a feature on your Insta feed. Explore over 400 metres of elevated boardwalks as they weave their way through the dense greenery, leafy ferns, and towering trees.
Exotic ‘deserted island’ vibes? Tick.
Lush green rainforest sprawling out onto golden sand? Tick.
Endless calm blue ocean? Tick.
Rustic rope swing hanging carelessly from a palm tree? Tick.
Umm, OK, Cow Bay, we get it. You were MADE for Instagram. Located two hours north of Cairns, half way between Cape Tribulation and the Daintree River, Cow Bay is must on your Insta bucket list.
MILLAA MILLAA FALLS
You know that classic Herbal Essences ad, where the woman is just casually washing her hair under a heavenly waterfall? Well, that heavenly waterfall actually exists and it’s called the Millaa Millaa Falls. With an 18-metre plunge waterfall cascading down into a beautiful emerald green lagoon, surrounded by moss covered rocks and forest ferns, it’s easy to see why this is one of Australia’s most photographed waterfalls.
Just half an hour from Cairns, Palm Cove is Insta-famous for its – yep, you guessed it – palm trees. A shot of you strolling along the dreamy palm-lined cobblestone walkway is simply made for the ‘gram.
Hidden away near the popular Crystal Cascades, Fairy Falls have become a bit of an Instagram “secret”. The secluded plunge pool is a little off the beaten track – to get there you must venture down an unmarked forest trail and scramble over a few boulders – but the reward is truly magical. Climb onto the swing rope for the ultimate Insta-worthy shot.
Contrary to its risqué name, you won’t find any nudists here, but you will find paradise. Turquoise waters and coral reefs fringe the shoreline, while vibrant green rainforest and sundrenched boulders sprawl across the pristine white sand. Capture your postcard perfect Insta shot here. Located on Fitzroy Island just 45-minutes from Cairns via ferry, and voted Australia’s Best Beach in 2018, Nudey Beach is a must-see on your vacation.
Tropical North Queensland is certainly not short on beautiful natural swimming holes, and Babinda Boulders is one of the very best. Just an hour’s drive south of Cairns, here you’ll find enchanting clear green pools, spotted with huge, smooth granite boulders, and plenty of Insta-worthy photo ops.
CLIFTON BEACH, CAIRNS
You know that place you imagine when you hear the words “tropical island paradise”? Yeah, that’s Clifton Beach. Even better, this blissful beach is home to one of the most Instagrammable palm trees in Cairns, which bends sideways over the sand, offering a view of Double Island and Haycock Island in the distance. Perfect to capture that highly coveted, totally candid, “Oh, it’s just me, lazing elegantly on a palm tree, gazing out over the ocean, you know, the usual” Insta shot you know you’re dying for.
BEHANA GORGE ROAD, GORDONVALE
While the Behana Gorge itself is breathtaking, the drive along the sugarcane lined Behana Gorge Road towards Walshs Pyramid is arguably just as spectacular – especially when it comes to capturing an unreal Instagram shot. Snap yourself, your mates, or even your trusty road trip van cruising down the road, with the world’s highest freestanding natural pyramid in the background.
This jaw-dropping spot may not be the easiest place to get to, but it is SO worth it. You’ve got to earn your Insta bragging rights on this one with a hike around 5km each way, but that’s what makes Windin Falls so special and untouched. Boasting a natural infinity pool and waterfall above sweeping views of the rainforest below, Windin Falls is every bit as epic as it sounds.
SO, ALREADY PLANNING YOUR OWN INSTA-WORTHY TRIP TO THE TROPICS? ESCAPE ON AN UNFORGETTABLE CAIRNS HOLIDAY WITH NOVOTEL’S SUMMER SALE.
Brittany Herron is a freelance travel and lifestyle writer and content creator. When she's not between her two homes of Newcastle and Adelaide, Brittany is an adventure-seeker, wandering the globe in search of sun, snow.