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Tourist Places To Visit In Cairns
Cairns, located towards the east in far north Queensland, is popularly known as the Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. A city brimming with life and adventures abound, Cairns is sure to leave you spellbound. There are a number of tourist places in Cairns that you must visit on your trip here. Be sure to visit the world heritage area of the Daintree Forest and explore the Cairns Regional Gallery. A dive or maybe a submerged boat ride in the Great Barrier Reef should probably top your to-do list. Cairns has a lot of places to see, some of which we have listed below for you.
Daintree National Park
Located 3 hours north of Cairns, the Daintree National Park is accessible by ferry, road and rail. The Daintree region has a tropical climate with large broadleaf tropical rainforests and upland tropical forests. You can also find large mangroves and fan palms in the area. Among the fauna, the more prominent ones would be saltwater crocodiles which are abundant in the far north. You may also be able to spot the flightless-Cassowary as it runs through the forests. The Daintree Discovery Centre keeps a track of the sightings. While at the park, you can also indulge in the Ocean Safari or sunbathe on the white sands of the Cape Tribulation Beach.
Located in the heart of the city, Cairns Museum takes you through the Aboriginal and cultural history of the region. The museum has 5 galleries which explore all aspects of life in Cairns and far north Queensland. It has a spectacular collection of objects, photographs and archival records for the place, its people, its culture and its heritage. A visit to the Cairns Museum will surely make you appreciate the raw beauty and the lives of natives. While members get free admission into the museum, adults have to pay a fee of $10. For children and senior citizens, it is $5 and $8 respectively. There are concessions for families as well.
Cairns Botanic Garden
The Cairns Botanic Garden is located just north of the city centre. It is your oasis of calm and beauty inside the fast-paced city. A tropical paradise, it is arguably the most beautiful and diverse exhibit of tropical plants in Australia. Admission into the garden is free of cost and most of the area is open round the clock. Certain areas are open only during the day and closed for the entire day on Christmas. There are donation boxes located within the garden premises to make a donation for the maintenance and upkeep of the garden.
Cairns Regional Gallery
The Cairns Regional Gallery is an independent not for profit company which is managed by a Board of Directors. About 60% of the maintenance costs are borne by the local government while the rest is generated from commercial activities and donations. The Cairns Regional Gallery is a public art museum which will help visitors better understand the region's culture and heritage through its art. It provides a unique insight into the history of Cairns and is committed to promoting the visual art forms of North Tropical Queensland. It hosts over 30 national and international exhibitions annually. The gallery is open all year round barring 4 holidays, namely, Christmas, New Year, Boxing Day and Good Friday.
Great Barrier Reef
The world’s largest coral formation and a UNESCO World Heritage site, The Great Barrier Reef is located right off the coast of Cairns. It is home to over 600 types of hard and soft coral and has innumerable species of fish, molluscs, starfish etc. It is a once in a lifetime experience to view the beauty of the reef from up close. If you’re into water sports, Scuba Diving is a must for you. If not, most of the reef areas have a submerged glass-bottom boat or a submarine which will take you around the reef so you can view the marine life from up close.
While the city itself does not have any beaches, towards the north, on the outskirts of the city there are a number of pristine beaches which will surely leave you enamoured. The beaches can easily be reached by bus. Not always ideal for a swim, nevertheless, these beaches make for a calm and relaxing evening. You could take a walk along the shore or lie on the sand and sunbathe. The more prominent beaches in the area are the Clifton Beach, Trinity Beach and the Palm Cove.
Port Douglas is located 70 km north of the city of Cairns and makes for an ideal day trip. It was established in 1877 and grew speedily having over 27 hotels and over 12000 residents at its peak. Port Douglas experienced the tourism boom in the late 1980s and since then has been a favourite tourist spot among locals and foreigners alike. Some of the popular activities here include kite surfing, scuba diving and snorkelling. It also has numerous restaurants, cafes, golf courses and some five-star resorts.
Cairns Night Market
As the sun goes down, the Night Markets of Cairns come alive, offering almost everything you can dream of. From organic local produce to the best vintage wines, from indigenous branded clothes to native Australian souvenirs, from freshly made churros to chilled bubble teas. You name it, they have it. Established in 1991 to emulate the night markets of South East Asia, the Cairns Night Market gained quick popularity among locals and tourists alike. What initially started with 28 stalls now has over 100 stalls. An evening at the Night Market will surely entice you for another visit. It is a perfect outing with friends and family alike with something on offer for each visitor. The Night Market is open from 5pm to 11pm on all days of the week.