Situated in the middle of a rainforest and surrounded by mountains is the town of Cairns. Being quite far from pretty much everywhere, the ideal way to get to Cairns is via plane (just don’t do what I did and forget to add baggage allowance as you will find yourself $80 lighter!) otherwise your looking at a fairly long bus journey.
Walking down the the streets of Cairns you will notice how easy it is to spend a lot of money on tours and general merchandise, everything from reef tours to rain forest tours are on offer. Don’t get me wrong these are normally very good, but also expensive.
The main obvious thing Cairns offers that most people flock to is the lagoon. Situated by the harbour its a brilliant way to chill out for the day and is free.
If you hired a car your cheap options are opened up. It costs roughly $40-$50 per day if your over 25yrs of age or $70 if your under 25.
If swimming isn’t your thing, then you should maybe head to for Kuranda. Kuranda is a market town and great for about half a day, with lots and lots of under cover quant little markets you should definitely give this town a visit.
One hidden treasure that cairns doesn’t really advertise much (its kinda kept for the locals…) is the waterfall & rock pools at Crystal Cascades. These are probably about 20-30mins from cairns. The rock pools are great for swimming in and you are likely to see wild turtles in some of the pools. Its better to head here during the week rather than the weekend, as this is when the locals tend to descend.
If you do not want to hire a car you could opt for the various galleries and walks that are available around Cairns… All great & all Cheap or free!