Kaplan City Guide: Cairns

If you want to enjoy warm tropical weather year-round, Cairns is the perfect destination. This sunny city is the gateway to some of Australia’s most amazing natural landscapes, including the stunning Great Barrier Reef, the Daintree Forest and Cape Tribulation.

Spend your days embarking on bush hikes, capturing panoramic views over the rainforest canopy from Kuranda Skyrail or cooling off in the clear blue waters by scuba diving or snorkelling – the choice is up to you! There are many amazing activities students at our Cairns English school love to take part in during their spare time. Take a look at what they have to recommend.

Go swimming

“The best thing is the lagoon. You can swim, enjoy a BBQ and listen to local music! It's fantastic.”

Tip provided by:

Lee Yerang, Korea

Cairn’s Esplanade has a spectacular swimming lagoon on the city’s foreshore. The 4,800 square meter saltwater pool is patrolled by lifeguards and illuminated every night. It features a 3km foreshore boardwalk complete with picnic areas, viewing points, barbeques and fitness equipment.

Cairns lagoon
Take a relaxing dip in the beautiful lagoon


Explore the city

“Cairns is a beautiful city, not too big, not too small. It has it's own charm. I don't know another city like it.”

Tip provided by:

Nikola Koresova, Czech Republic

The city has an amazing range of world class restaurants, cafés, pubs and bars, offering some of the freshest produce. The Atherton Tablelands is home to cattle grazing areas and tropical fruit orchards, along with fresh seafood from the Coral Sea. There is also some great shopping, with stores and a number of markets in the area. The Cairns Night Markets are open 7 days a week, with over 70 unique stalls selling all sorts of amazing things.

Cairns city
Whether you want to stay close to the water or venture into the heart of the city, your'e sure to find something

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Discover the outdoors

“I recommend going to Millaa Millaa and visiting Lake Eacham.”

Tip provided by:

Daniel de Olivfina Connea, Brazil

There are so many beautiful natural locations just a short day trip away. Lake Eacham is a clear, blue lake surrounded by lush rainforest, and offers swimming, birdwatching, canoeing, picnic areas and walking tracks. Make sure to visit the Millaa Millaa rainforest, where you can explore some truly spectacular waterfalls.

Cairns outdoors
Experience some of the amazing natural beauty Australia is famous for


Experience the local marine life

My favorite thing about this city is the ocean. I love snorkelling and diving.”

Tip provided by:

Selim Foglino, Italy

Whether you’re exploring the native marine life or just soaking up some vitamin D on the shore, locals and tourists are always drawn to the beautiful beaches of Cairns. Go on a diving trip and explore the Great Barrier reef, or buy some snorkelling equipment and explore the waters on your own. You’ll be sure to come across something worth seeing!

Cairns diving
Dive deep into the cool blue waters and experience life a different depth


Have you studied or visited in Cairns - do you have any other tips we should share? Let us know.

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