From the incredible Great Barrier Reef to the Daintree Rainforest, the Atherton Tablelands and the wonderful vibe in the city itself, Cairns has long been one of Australia’s favourite travel destinations.

So, what are some of the things that make Cairns so loved by everyone who goes there?

Let’s take a cheeky look below…

It’s the best place to head to The Reef

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the world’s true natural wonders: a sprawling series of thousands of individual coral reefs situated along the Queensland coastline.

Cairns is easily the best place along this stretch of 2,700km to experience The Reef, with plenty of stunning, unique reefs dotted just off the coastline. From Flynn Reef (parrot and clown fish!) to The Cod Hole (with absolutely giant potato cod) and Norman Reef (for a little bit of whale spotting), Cairns is recognised as “the gateway to the reef” and it’s easy to see why!

The Atherton Tablelands

Located just over an hour’s drive from Cairns are the wondrous Atherton Tablelands, a gorgeous region of cascading waterfalls, lush forest and a few fascinating oddities, as well.

Be sure to head along the Waterfalls Circuit (we don’t have to tell you why!) and then visit the surreal Paronella Park, the once-desired manor house of a Spanish migrant with big dreams and what must have been an even bigger budget.

Today, the estate is sitting in near-ruin, which only serves to make the property and its lush gardens even more fascinating.

The Daintree Rainforest

The Daintree Rainforest is millions of years older than the Amazon itself, and so this should give you a quick idea of the countless species of flora and fauna that inhabit the canopy and forest floor.

From the prehistoric predator that is the mighty saltwater crocodile to the rowdy southern cassowary and all manner of snakes, lizards, birds and marsupials, the Daintree is truly one of the most remarkable ecosystems in the world!

Not only this, but it’s also home to one of the world’s most sublime beaches in Cape Tribulation. Just hike out of the forest and onto this stunning beach and you will see exactly why visiting the Daintree was a spectacular idea…

Related article: Which is the best bus pass for the East Coast of Australia?

Explore Our Cairns Tours