Cairns is a garden city between the sea and rainforest mountains.
Cairns is small, cosmopolitan and compact Almost everything a visitor needs is in walking distance with Green and Fitzroy Islands only a short cruise away.
Cairns, shops, restaurants and nightclubs blend graciously with the architecture of the past.The marina and wharfs used by visiting yachts, liners and tour boats are almost an extension of the main streets. Tours to most parts of the tropical north leave daily and most include pick-up and return to your holiday accommodation. The international airport is a short drive from the city centre.
Founded in 1876 as a port for inland gold fields, Cairns is a tribute to the first surveyors who cleared just enough foreshore scrub to pitch their tents before pegging out streets wide enough for a future city they could never have imagined.
are parks and playgrounds with fountains and shady trees. The Esplanade
has picnic tables and barbecues,
space to fly a kite, paths
to jog and
walk, seats to pause and watch the boats go by and a printed guide
to help you identify the abundant bird life.
Shopping is a pleasure in arcades, courts, plazas, boutiques and duty free stores where you can buy everything from local souvenirs to superb jewellery, sporting gear, fashions and accessories by top Australian and overseas designers.
Works by the north's many artists, including a growing number of Aborigines, are displayed for browsers and buyers in small galleries and the large regional gallery which established in a heritage building. The Casino and separate Convention Centre offers pavement cafes, food halls, coffee shops and restaurants open from early morning to late evening when the nightclubs are starting to swing.
Join the locals at weekend markets close to the city centre. Forget you're even in a city on mangrove boardwalks at the airport, rainforest walks to the top of Mt Whitfield and from Centenary Lakes to the Botanic Gardens.
Near the Cairns gardens is the Royal Flying Doctor Base where you can see how this uniquely Australian institution has provided a mantle of safety for residents and travellers in the outback since 1928.