Cairns City, A Modern Tropical City with a Relaxed Atmosphere
Cairns City is the heart of Tropical North Queensland and is the primary gateway to Northern Australia. A modern, sophisticated city, it is an ideal base to explore the wider Tropical North Queensland region with front door access to World Heritage listed Reef, Rainforest and Outback. An amazing 600 tour options are available each and every day from Cairns.
The Cairns International Airport is located only several minutes drive north of the city centre. The city itself is where much of the accommodation is situated - close to international standard restaurants, boutique shopping, modern art galleries and evening entertainment. The airport, privately owned and operated by the Cairns Port Authority, has driven much of the region's growth in visitors. Since 1984 when the International Airport was opened, Cairns has developed into Australia's fastest growing tourist destination. On the ground, there is also good access to Cairns from the South by road and rail.
First settled in 1876 as the port for inland goldfields, Cairns has matured from a frontier town to a cosmopolitan international gateway. One of Australia's most liveable regional centres, as its city residents will agree. All the attributes of a world class modern city are to be found in Cairns: International air access, rail systems, high-standard accommodation facilities, an art gallery, botanic gardens, university, a casino and a convention centre. Almost a century of architecture is reflected in the city streets - a comfortable blend of traditional Queenslander style and modern designs. Modern buildings grace the cityscape with a mixture of architectural designs including the Reef Hotel Casino, Cairns International Hotel and the Cairns Convention Centre.
A focal point for the city is the Cairns Esplanade. Almost two kilometres of landscaped parkland fringes a busy thoroughfare and restaurant strip on one side, and a natural harbour inlet on the other. Each year, thousands of visitors flock to the Esplanade to relax on the grass, eat at sidewalk cafes, meet new people, to walk under the trees, and to watch the many bird species, which come to feed on the tidal zone. Also in the harbour area is the Marlin Marina, where a colourful array of game fishing, tour and cruise boats berth. Dockside at near-by Trinity Wharf, international cruise liners tower over high-technology wave-piercing catamarans, which take hundreds of thousands of visitors to the reef each year. Trinity Wharf also doubles as the city's major coach terminal.