2020 hasn’t panned out the way we expected. With COVID-19 sweeping the globe and deeming international travel a no-go, plenty of Aussies are instead looking to ‘holiday at home’ this year—and for many of us, Cairns is on the top of the destination wish list.
A great place to get outdoors, breathe in the fresh air and soak in the sun, there’s never been a better time to take that Cairns motorhome or campervan getaway you’ve been dreaming about.
Even during the COVID-era, there are still plenty of great things to do in Cairns. Here are just a few of them…
1. Stroll the Esplanade
Take in the sights and sounds of Cairns by taking a slow stroll down the waterfront Esplanade, and make sure you take your bathers so you can go for a dip in the Esplanade Lagoon while you’re there!
2. Cruise the reef
Take in the beauty of the natural wonder that is the Great Barrier Reef with a reef cruise where you’ll be able to get out on the crystal-clear water and explore the extensive coral reef system.
3. Go fishing
Hire a pontoon, speed or tinny boat from Trinity Inlet and head out for a day on the water. Whether you’re into reef fishing, estuary fishing, river fishing or fly fishing, it’s all on offer in Cairns.
4. Wander through the Cairns Botanic Gardens
Get a taste of a tropical rainforest right in the heart of Cairns by taking a leisurely stroll through the impressive Botanic Gardens, which is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna.
5. Take the kids to Muddy’s
If you’re travelling with the family, the kids will love you forever if you take them to Muddy’s water park playground and cafe on the waterfront.
6. Explore the rainforest, Barron Falls and Kuranda
Escape the heat and explore the lush world-heritage rainforest, commanding Barron Falls and charming mountain village of Kuranda, where you’ll find plenty of scenic walking tracks, unique wildlife encounters and other interesting attractions.
7. Swimming at Crystal Cascades
Always wanted to swim in one of those secluded swimming holes complete with a gorgeous waterfall that you only ever see on travel shows? Head to Crystal Cascades to do it for real!
8. Spend the day at Fitzroy Island
Take the 45-minute boat ride to Fitzroy Island to spend a relaxing day paddling around the pristine coral beaches or exploring the beautiful tropical rainforest.
9. Croc encounter
If you’ve never witnessed the mighty saltwater crocodile in the flesh, Cairns is the place to do it—experience them close-up at a wildlife park, or head on a croc-spotting cruise to see them in their natural environment.
10. Picnic at Lake Morris
Enjoy a picnic lunch with the family by the shores of Lake Morris, while taking the views of the surrounding rainforest which seemingly tumbles down to the water’s edge.
While the attractions we’ve listed are all open and accepting visitors at the time of writing, given the ever-changing environment, it’s worth calling ahead or doing a quick check online to confirm what the current protocols at any attractions are before heading there.
Most attractions and tourism operators have measures in place to minimise any risk to visitors including social distancing and a cap on the number of visitors, which could even provide a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the best of Cairns without the large crowds you might normally find!