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Top 10 Must-Visit Attractions in Cairns and Surroundings

Cairns, located in the tropical paradise of North Queensland, Australia, is a destination that offers a rich tapestry of natural wonders and cultural experiences. From the stunning Great Barrier Reef to lush rainforests and vibrant local culture, Cairns and its surroundings have something to offer every traveller. If you're planning a visit, here are the top 10 must-visit attractions to include in your itinerary.


1. Great Barrier Reef

No visit to Cairns would be complete without exploring the world-famous Great Barrier Reef. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the largest coral reef system on the planet, teeming with marine life and vibrant coral formations. Snorkelling, scuba diving, and reef cruises are popular ways to experience its wonders.


2. Daintree Rainforest

Venture north from Cairns to discover the ancient Daintree Rainforest, one of the oldest rainforests on Earth. Explore lush greenery, hike through the dense jungle, and take a guided tour to learn about the unique flora and fauna, including the elusive cassowary.


3. Kuranda Village

Known as the "Village in the Rainforest," Kuranda is a charming town nestled amidst the lush rainforest. Accessible by the scenic Kuranda Scenic Railway or Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, you'll find local markets, wildlife sanctuaries, and cultural experiences such as the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park.


4. Atherton Tablelands

A short drive from Cairns, the Atherton Tablelands is a highland region featuring rolling green hills, waterfalls, and picturesque lakes. Visit the Millaa Millaa Falls, Atherton, and Lake Eacham for stunning natural beauty.


5. Fitzroy Island

A short ferry ride from Cairns, Fitzroy Island is a tropical paradise with crystal-clear waters, lush rainforest walks, and fantastic snorkelling opportunities. The island offers a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Pick from full day tours, snorkelling tours, transfers to the island or half day trips.  


6. Cairns Esplanade

For a relaxing day in the city, head to the Cairns Esplanade. This waterfront promenade features a saltwater lagoon, barbecue areas, and a variety of cafes and restaurants. It's perfect for a leisurely stroll or a dip in the lagoon.


7. Barron Gorge National Park

Located just outside Cairns, Barron Gorge National Park is home to the stunning Barron Falls. Explore walking trails that offer breathtaking viewpoints of the falls and the surrounding rainforest.


8. Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park

Immerse yourself in Australia's Indigenous culture at the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. Experience traditional dances, art, and learn about the history and customs of the local Tjapukai people.


9. Cairns Aquarium

Discover the wonders of the underwater world at the Cairns Aquarium. This interactive attraction showcases the diverse marine life of the Great Barrier Reef and the surrounding waters.


10. Paronella Park

Step back in time at Paronella Park, a heritage-listed site featuring the ruins of a Spanish-inspired castle surrounded by lush gardens and waterfalls. It's a unique and romantic place to explore.


Cairns and its surroundings offer a wealth of natural beauty, cultural experiences, and outdoor adventures. Whether you're interested in diving into the depths of the Great Barrier Reef or exploring the ancient rainforests, Cairns has something to captivate every traveller. Plan your visit to this tropical paradise and create memories that will last a lifetime.