Local time Cairns



Getting around Cairns

Public transport

The only public transport available in Cairns is the public bus service, run by Sunbus (tel: +61 7 4057 7411; www.sunbus.com.au). Buy tickets on buses or at the Cairns City Bus Station on Lake Street between Shield and Spence Streets. All buses can either be caught at bus stops or hailed at any point along the route. Single, daily and weekly passes are available, and a return is typically transformed into a daily ticket.

Buses ply most of Cairns, and head all the way to Palm Cove (bus 110). Buses 130 and 131 head to the Botanic Gardens. Popular beaches, including Holloways Beach and Yorkeys Knob, can also be reached by bus (112, 113 and 120) via Smithfield or Cairns Central. 


The sole provider of taxis in Cairns is Cairns Taxis (tel: 131 008, in Australia only).


Having a car in Cairns is a great way to get out and explore the nearby scenery. Within the city, there's some free parking, usually with a time limit. For metered parking, you need exact change in coins, or a Visa or MasterCard. Parking ticket machines can accept 10c, 20, 50c, $1 and $2 coins. Signs indicate whether parking is ticketed or not. Parking on a solid yellow could result in a AUD$116 fine.

Car hire

Most of the car hire companies in Cairns are located on Lake Street, between Florence and Aplin Streets, or at the airport. These include Avis (tel: +61 7 4033 9555; www.avis.com.au), Budget (tel: +61 7 4048 8166; www.budget.com.au), East Coast Car Rentals (tel: +61 1800 327 826; www.eastcoastcarrentals.com.au) and Hertz (tel: +61 7 4051 6399; www.hertz.com.au). It is advisable to book in advance, particularly for 4-wheel vehicles.

Bicycle hire

Bicycle hire is daily or weekly, though sometimes it's only slightly more expensive to hire a bike for a month than it is for a week. Cairns Electric Bikes, 34 The Esplanade (tel: +61 7 40 391 450/ +61 07 391 450; www.cairns-electric-bikes.com.au) and Cairns Scooter and Bicycle Hire, 47 Shields Street (tel: +61 7 4031 3444; www.cairnsbicyclehire.com.au) both rent out bikes.

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Book Accommodation

Featured Hotels


Cairns Queenslander Hotel and Apartments

Just one block from the Cairns Esplanade Memorial Walk and beach, the Cairns Queenslander offers a range of accommodation including spacious private balcony rooms, standard rooms, and self-catering 2 bedroom apartments. For those travelling on business, the hotel is located close to Cairns Central Business District.

Cairns Coconut Holiday Resort

Located just minutes from Cairns city centre, this 5-star family-friendly resort is set on 28 acres of grounds that include swimming pools and a playground for the children, award winning tropical gardens and rainforest areas. The resort offers a range of accommodation, from luxury condos that sleep up to eight people, to spa villas, and tropical ensuite cabins. Tour companies collect at the front of the resort.

The Reef House

The Reef House is influenced by colonial style beach houses, with plantation shutters, latticework and lush greenery. It offers a relaxed tropical vibe and sits in the heart of Palm Cove’s beachfront boulevard.

Floriana Guesthouse

Occupying an enviable location on the Cairns Esplanade, Floriana Guest House is a heritage-listed former private mansion from the 1930s. Styled with period furnishings, it offers traditional hospitality along with an insight into Cairns history.

Tropic Days Backpackers Hostel

This is simply the best backpackers hostel in town, offering a choice of singles, doubles and small dorms in a beautifully restored Queenslander. There is also a swimming pool surrounded by hammocks for lazy days. One of the best cheap hotels in Cairns for those on a budget.

Pullman Palm Cove Sea Temple Resort and Spa

Despite its mouthful of a name, Sea Temple is an elegant apartment-style hotel with direct access to Palm Cove’s palm tree-lined beach. For the ultimate indulgence, book a room with private plunge pool or rooftop spa.