What are your plans for the weekend? Far North Queensland is jam-packed with activities, so it’s unlikely you’ll ever run out of things to do in Cairns. Whether you’re up for an exhilarating adventure or something more slow-paced, yet still educational, we’ve got 22 ideas to get you started. Here are some the best things to do in Cairns with kids.
1. Rainforestation Nature Park
Rainforestation is an eco-friendly attraction has everything for a great day out, including Army Duck rainforest tours, Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience and a koala and wildlife park, located on 100 acres of World Heritage Rainforest. Test your boomerang throwing skills, meet an abundance of iconic Aussie animals, hand-feed wallabies and kangaroos and get your photo with a koala or crocodile.
P 07 4085 5008
A 1030 Kennedy Hwy, Kuranda
2. Frankland Islands Reef Cruises
Looking for a way to experience the reef that is a little different? Frankland Island Reef Cruises provide a great family-friendly experience.
It is a pristine location and they are the only tour there, so it’s free from crowds. All equipment is provided as well as a guided snorkelling tour, island walk with the marine biologist and a tropical buffet lunch. Snorkelling provides a great activity for all ages and swimming abilities, and allows you to get up close with the beautiful reef.
P 07 4033 0081
3. Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures
Be taken on a journey of discovery into the ‘wild’ world of Australian native and exotic animals. Enjoy educational and entertaining wildlife shows featuring crocodiles, reptiles and much more. Explore the Gondwana Gateway and the Gallery of Living Art where you can see colourful snakes and lizards from Australia and abroad. Be amazed by the world-famous crocodile attack show and take a cruise on Hartley’s Lagoon.
P 07 4055 3576
A Captain Cook Highway, Wangetti
4. Australian Armour and Artillery Museum
See the largest collection of armoured vehicles and artillery in the Southern Hemisphere. Learn the history of where they’ve been and the duties they served. The kids will be in awe of the huge tanks, armoured vehicles and combat equipment as they wander around this unique museum. Experience the thrill of riding in an armoured vehicle – it’s an experience your family won’t forget anytime soon.
P 07 4038 1665
A 2 Skyrail Dr, Smithfield
5. Kuranda Koala Gardens
A boutique wildlife attraction home to a number of iconic Australian species, situated in the middle of the Heritage Markets in Kuranda. This tranquil wildlife oasis has koalas, freshwater crocodiles, kangaroos and wallabies, snakes, wombats and lizards, monitors and other reptiles. At an extra charge, get a photo holding a fluffy koala or scaly python for an experience you’ll never forget.
P 07 4093 9953
A Kuranda Heritage Markets, Rob Veivers Dr, Kuranda
6. Cairns Zoom and Wildlife Dome
This unique and innovative attraction is located inside a dome in the heart of Cairns City, incorporating a wildlife park with a challenge ropes course. Take a stroll through the dome and discover vibrant flora and captivating fauna, or take on the ropes course and even zipline over Goliath the croc. It’s completely indoors, making it a great all-weather activity.
P 07 4031 7250
A The Reef Hotel Casino, 35-41 Wharf St, Cairns City
7. Birdworld Kuranda
Immerse yourself in one of the most unique wildlife attractions in the region. Listed as one of the largest free-flight bird aviaries in Australia, Birdworld replicates the natural habitats of more than 60 birds. This attraction allows you to get up close and personal with some of the most beautiful birds in the world. Don’t be surprised if one of these feathered friends lands on your shoulder!
P 07 4093 9188
A Heritage Markets, Kuranda
8. Australian Butterfly Sanctuary
Located in the heart of Kuranda, the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is the largest butterfly flight aviary and exhibit in Australia, home to over 1500 butterflies. If you stand still, there’s a good chance one will land on you. There is also a laboratory, museum, gift shop, microscope, UV Light Display and more to discover.
P 07 4093 7575
A 8 Rob Veivers Dr, Kuranda
9. Sugarworld Adventure Park
A favourite with both tourists and locals. The waterpark features two exciting tube slides, a mat-racing slide, an interactive play system with a huge tipping bucket and a toddler pool. Gather up family and friends and have a go at mini-golf. If you get hungry, there’s a café with lots of yummy options on site. The kids won’t want to go home!
P 07 4055 5477
A Hambledon Dr, Edmonton
10. Tobruk Memorial Pool
Tobruk Memorial Pool has something for everyone, including an Olympic-sized swimming pool, warm water pool and toddler splash pool with fountains for the littlest ones. There are also trampolines for little ones to burn off energy and a coaching zone for parents. Be sure to have a go at riding the only wave in Cairns on the thrilling Flowrider.
P 07 4051 2604
A 370 Sheridan St, Cairns North
11. Paradise Palms
Paradise Palms is the ultimate fun destination for the younger and older adventurers in the family. Play zones include a super slippery slide, climbing frame, and beautiful Queenslander style cubby homes. The flying Fox is always a favourite and the giant 21 metre jumping pillow is fun for all the family. Want to extend the fun? Book in for a night at paradise and try our all day menu restaurant.
P 07 4059 9922
A Paradise Palms Drive, Kewarra Beach
12. Lava Tubes Undara
Undara is Australia’s accessible piece of the outback set in the Gulf Savannah country. Explore the incredible lava tubes at Undara and learn about the environment and its geological and historical facts. Here, you can walk in the path of a volcano. Take a full day or half day tour with a local guide who will tell you some fascinating things about the caves.
P 07 4097 1900
A Undara Volcanic National Park, Savannah Way
13. Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas
Immerse yourself in a range of natural environments at Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas. Discover birdlife, reptiles, kangaroos, turtles, gliders and more. Stick around for the crocodile feeding and get your photo taken with a photogenic koala, crocodile or snake. Make your experience extra special by having Breakfast with the Birds or Lunch with the Lorikeets.
P 07 4099 3235
A Port Douglas Rd, Port Douglas
14. Reef Teach
Learn about the Great Barrier Reef in a fun and family friendly environment. Presentations are full of amazing facts and the opportunity to touch marine sea life that you wouldn’t normally handle in the wild. It will amaze, inspire and captivate both parents and kids alike as you learn the weird and wonderful things about the reef. Reef Teach will have you laughing in their fun-filled presentations.
P 07 4031 7794
A 2nd Floor, Main Street Arcade, Cairns City
15. Mungalli Creek Bio-Dynamic Dairy
Ever wanted to have a meal at a working dairy farm? The Farmhouse Café is situated in the heart of Mungalli Creek Bio-Dynamic Dairy Farm and serves decadent meals as well as morning and afternoon tea, using dairy products and locally sourced organic produce. The location boasts gorgeous views of the rolling hills of the farm, rainforests and Mt Bartle Frere in the background.
P 07 4097 2232
A 254 Brooks Rd, Ellinjaa
16. The Crystal Caves
Explore a unique museum like no other. Located in the Atherton Tablelands, this extraordinary museum has been transformed into a 300m2 man-made cave featuring the world’s most beautiful crystal collection as well as a gift store with a variety of natural crystals, gemstones and fossils. Crack your very own geode to take home and be the first person to see the crystals that grew inside!
P 07 4041 1031
A 69 Main St, Atherton
17. Rainforest Mini Golf
Enjoy Rainforest Mini Golf in the heart of the Original Kuranda Markets under the cool shady canopy of Tropical Foliage. A fun and affordable activity suitable for all ages and abilities. Adjacent to Jungle Juice which serves delicious fresh tropical juices, smoothies and organic coffee.
P 0417 999 102
A Shop 39, Original Kuranda Rainforest Market, 13 Therwine St, Kuranda
18. Cairns Art Gallery
Head down to Cairns Art Gallery to observe professional artists’ works. With a wide variety of art, the whole family can enjoy what the gallery has to offer. The gallery also offers a number of art classes throughout the year for both kids and parents in drawing, painting, animation, fashion design, ceramics and much more. Let your imagination run free.
P 07 4046 4800
A 40 Abbott St, Cairns City
19. Cairns Night Markets
Here you’ll find something for the whole family to enjoy. Traditional Chinese massages, Reef Fresh Fish Spa, Indigenous crafts, jewellery, beauty products and services, delicious treats, Aussie souvenirs and handmade, unique gifts. Have a bite to eat at the food court with the choice of multiple cuisines, and don’t forget to grab a yummy dessert too. All a stone’s throw from the esplanade.
P 07 4051 7666
A 71-75 The Esplanade, Cairns City
20. Cairns City Lagoon
Enjoy free entry to Cairns City Lagoon and beat the heat. This massive pool is located in the heart of Cairns along the beautiful esplanade, offering views over the ocean. With BBQ facilities and plenty of spots for a picnic, the whole family can enjoy a day by the cool and refreshing lagoon. If you don’t feel like cooking, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes right across the road.
P 1300 692 247
A 52-54 The Esplanade, Cairns City
21. Laserfun Family Entertainment Centre
Looking for an adrenaline rush for the whole family? Laserfun is Cairns’ ultimate indoor family entertainment centre with laser tag, arcade and virtual reality and is awesome fun for children and adults alike. Come during the school holidays for the incredible MEGA laser tag sessions. Best value family fun in air-conditioned venue. You can even get a great coffee!
P 07 4031 9865
A T1, DFO Shopping Centre, 274 Mulgrave Rd, Westcourt
22. Muddy’s Playground
Featuring a number of playgrounds tied into one with plenty of places to climb, slide and run, there is plenty to do for all ages and abilities. There is also an interactive water playground, café with plenty of yummy options and a playground specifically for younger children. An outing to Muddy’s Playground means endless entertainment for the kids and peace and quiet for the parents.
P 1300 692 247
A 174 The Esplanade, Cairns City