What’s on in Cairns

Let Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort bring you the very best of Cairns. No matter what time of year you visit, our centrally located accommodation near the Great Barrier Reef and Cairns CBD means the best attractions, activities and events are just moments away.

When planning what to do during your stay in Cairns, we’ll keep you up date on what’s on!

  • Beer-N-Burger Fest

    A big new beer, burger and music festival in Cairns brought to you by Tropic Now, the crew who brings you Meet Eat Repeat.
    A celebration of local craft beers and local burger joints, plus amazing live music, smoked BBQ meats, a wine, cider and cocktail bar and heaps more.
    Stay tuned to the Beer-N-Burger Fest website (www.beernburger.comm.au) for more details.
    Get excited people!
    WHEN: Saturday 10th November
    WHERE: North Cairns Tigers Football & Netball Club (2 Behan Street, Cairns)

    The Babinda Harvest Festival is an annual event. It celebrates the start of the sugarcane harvest as well as celebrating the harvesting of other tropical produce from our region -- bananas, pawpaws, tropical flowers and vailla to name a few. 

    Babinda Harvest Festival was first held on the 27th of October 1962, however back then it was known as the Babinda Sugar Harvest Festival and was presented by the Bellenden Kerr Junior Farmers. Initially the street procession was held at 7.30pm and the Sugar Princess was crowned at 9pm in the Memorial Hall. Entrants in the Sugar Princess quest came from Tully to Mossman and everywhere in between. Babinda’s own Joan Arnold (nee Dickson) claimed the title of the very first Sugar Princess. The day after the Festival an afternoon of water sports was held at the Russell River by the Russell River Water Sports Club.

    Bellenden Kerr Rural Youth took charge of the Festival held on the 29th of October 1966, then renamed as the Babinda Sugar Festival. The street procession began at Babinda Show Grounds (now known as Bill Wakeham Park), and the Festival was held at ANZAC Park. Not only was there a prize for the Sugar Queen, crowned by Former Test Cricketer Wally Grout, second and third prizes were given out as well. A dance was also held at the Hall, with entertainment from Michael & the Mustangs and Blu-Stars Orchestra. The Festival was televised by ‘FNQ Channel 10 – Cairns’, and broadcast by Cairns radio station 4CA.

    This is a free event. 

    For more information please visit: http://babindaharvestfest.org/about-babinda-harvest-festival/


    See the North through a Rainbow Filter this Spring, from October 12 - 14.

    This event is a celebration of diversity, inclusion and harmony.

    Join the LGBT+ community of Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef celebrating a festival of diversity and harmony with friends and guests from around the country and across the globe.

    • October 12 Tropical Gaze Art Exhibition and Gala Community Awards Night.
    • October 13 Morning Event at Paradiso Cairns. Queer Spring Break II at Turtle Cove Beach Resort.
    • October 14 Pride Fair Day. Evening Event at The Coservatory Bar 

    For more information visit: http://www.cairnstropicalpride.com/home.html

  • The Grass is Greener 2018

    The grass is greener festival was a concept born + bred in Australia’s far north, a place where international tours seldom touch the shores. as a result, a genuine love for the home-grown music scene has flourished.

    Inspired by a market that seeks trends from home, rather than foreign shores, local masterminds Oli Frost + Johnny Eddings came up with a simple, all-inclusive, concept. To create an all ages event, shaped entirely by local producers + local suppliers with world-class talent + production. The name pokes fun at the age-old saying, ‘the grass is greener on the other side’, a saying implying that things would be better somewhere else. Instead, TGIG is committed to supporting local talent in our very own backyard, to prove the grass is plenty green in far north Queensland.

    For more information and the full line up visit: http://thegrassisgreener.com.au/#about

    Ticketed event. 

  • Monthly Palm Cove Markets

    The Palm Cove Markets showcase local, quality handmade products from contemporary jewellery, leather work, pottery, clothes, skincare, plants and produce, wellness stalls and food.

    The markets have great family entertainment including free crazy golf and a free jumping castle.

    When: The Palm Cove markets are held on the first Sunday of the month, from April to December. Please note there is no market in September.

    For more information on Cairns local markets please visit: https://www.facebook.com/OfficialCairnsMarkets/%20

  • Tanks Market Day Series Sundays

    Time: 9:00am - 2:00pm

    Location: Collins Avenue, Edge Hill

    Showcasing a blend of local art, craft, produce, vintage clothing, collectibles and local natural health products and treatments, the markets are a relaxing way to spend a Sunday morning.

    Market stalls line Tanks promenade on Collins Avenue, with live entertainment provided by local musicians.

    For the latest market news, see the Tank Markets Facebook Page

    29th April 9am - 2pm Sunday Market - first market for 2018
    27th May 9am - 2pm Sunday Market
    24th June 9am - 3pm Body, Mind and Soul Market Day
    29th July 9am - 2pm Sunday Market
    26th August No market See Carnival on Collins below
    2nd September 9am - 3pm Carnival on Collins
    30th September 9am - 2pm Sunday Market
    28th October 9am - 2pm Sunday Market
    25th November 9am - 2pm Sunday Market - last market for 2018

  • Free guided birdwatching tour

    Join local birding legend John Seale for a free guided birdwatching tour of the Botanic Gardens precinct.

    Tours leave from Friends of the Gardens House at 8:30am.

    The walk takes approximately two hours.

    We recommend you bring binoculars and wear sensible walking shoes.

    Time: 8:30am - 10:30am

    Location: Meet at Friends House in the Flecker Garden.

    Notes: Free tour every Tuesday morning

  • Rusty’s Market, Every Friday Saturday & Sunday

    Rusty’s Market is one of the most successful and well-known markets in Australia and abroad.

    From modest beginnings in 1975 of only half-a-dozen stalls, Rusty’s has grown into a bustling three-day event. Renown for its carnival atmosphere and colourful stallholders, Rusty’s boasts over 180 stalls featuring exotic fruit, vegetables, and flowers, sumptuous delicatessens with fresh breads, diary, and seafood, a host of international food and beverage stalls, an abundance of bric-a-brac and specialty products including clothing, jewellery, coffee, and chocolate ... and so much more!

    Rusty’s is named after the late Emrys ‘Rusty’ Rees, who developed and expanded his vision into the thriving market it is today. Rusty’s new owners, Gilligan’s Backpacker Hotel & Resort, have faithfully taken up that vision, and Rusty’s continues to offer its weekly delights to locals and tourists alike.

    Today, Rusty’s Market is an established Cairns tourist icon, and certainly worth a visit. Drop in any Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. We are located in the CBD between Grafton and Sheridan Streets — just ask any local.


    Friday — 5am to 6pm
    Saturday — 5am to 6pm
    Sunday — 5am to 3pm

    See more information on Rusty's Market's website: www.rustysmarkets.com.au

  • Cairns Esplanade market - Every Saturday

    Every Saturday, between 8am and 4pm, the Cairns Esplanade market stalls showcase items crafted by the people who sell them. The quality stalls include jewellery, leather work, pottery, airbrush tattoos, clothes, skincare and more.

    See more here: http://www.cairns.qld.gov.au/esplanade/whats-on/markets

  • Cairns Museum - Re-opened

    On July 10th the newest attraction for Cairns will open its doors, and showcase the story, the history, and  the wonderful tropical life of Cairns North Queensland to the world. We will be welcoming locals and visitors alike to experience the past and the present, the beasties and the beauties of this region.

    The Museum tells the story of Cairns in 4 main galleries

    • Cairns Over Time,
    • Old Cairns and the School of Arts,
    • Living in the Tropics, and
    • Changing Cairns. 

    Covering 3 floors, it also includes a changing Temporary Exhibitions Gallery. Interactive activities, a short film, and a wealth of exhibits, deliver an interesting experience for our visitors, and provide an introduction to the city of Cairns. Catering for the mainstream tourism market as well as the international student market, the Museum has a large tropical verandah, which can host functions. .Located in the heart of the city at the corner of Shields and Lake Street is in walking distance to all the CBD hotels.

    For more details, please see http://www.cairnsmuseum.org.au/