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Top Cairns & the Tropical North Outdoor Activities

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A pint-sized island of lust rainforests, white sands, and vibrant coral, the aptly named Green Island is a highlight of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, and it’s a popular half- or full-day tour from Cairns. Here are some can’t-miss activities. 

Cruises and Boat Tours
Set sail on a catamaran cruise or glass-bottom boat tour of Green Island, and explore the protected landscapes of the Green Island National Park. Along the way, stop at the Pinnacle Reef to swim and snorkel, visit Marineland Melanesia to see the crocodiles, or enjoy a buffet lunch onboard. 

Snorkeling and Scuba Diving
The shores of Green Island are teeming with marine life, so grab your snorkel gear and dive in to discover the underwater wonders. There are numerous spots for snorkeling and scuba diving, and if you’re lucky, you’ll get to see sea turtles, giant clams, starfish, and sea anemones, as well as a huge variety of tropical fish.

Active Adventures
Head to the Green Island Resort to go canoeing, sailboarding, and surf skiing; try kayaking or windsurfing at the island’s beaches, or spot wildlife on a hike through the rain forest. For something a little different, take a Seawalker Helmet dive or a semi-submersible coral-viewing tour.

Helicopter Tours
You don’t have to get wet to marvel at the natural wonders of the Great Barrier Reef—the most thrilling way to take in the views is on a helicopter tour. Take off from Cairns and soar over the beaches and reefs of Green Island, enjoying unrivaled aerial views.
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Barron Gorge National Park Half-Day White Water Rafting from Cairns or Port Douglas

Barron Gorge National Park Half-Day White Water Rafting from Cairns or Port Douglas

star-5
Tackle the grade II and III rapids of the Barron River on this adrenaline-pumping half-day tour from Cairns or Port Douglas. Prepare to get wet and wild as you hurtle over the rapids, then float downstream past the jagged cliffs, plunging ravines and lush rainforest of the Barron Gorge National Park. Best of all: with gentle rapids and full instruction provided, this tour is suitable for all levels, including complete beginners.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$82.33
From
$82.33

Great Barrier Reef Snorkeling and Diving Cruise from Cairns

Great Barrier Reef Snorkeling and Diving Cruise from Cairns

star-4.5
If snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef is on your bucket list, don’t miss this day trip from Cairns. The 35-metre superyacht, Evolution, departs Cairns with a record 5 hours spent exploring 2 spectacular and exclusive outer Great Barrier Reef locations for an adventure-filled day! You’ll visit 2 different locations on the barrier reef for the chance to see tropical marine life in the clear waters. Lunch is included onboard the boat, and you have the option to upgrade to include additional adventures such as introductory or certified scuba diving or a helicopter flight over this UNESCO World Heritage site. Both water sports enthusiasts and novices are welcome. Includes instruction and equipment provided by friendly and professional instructors.
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  • 8 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$129.37
From
$129.37
Taking safety measures

Kayak Turtle Tour from Palm Cove

Kayak Turtle Tour from Palm Cove

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Hop in a kayak and paddle from Palm Cove to Double Island, where mangroves and coral reefs await. Along the way, you’ll meet turtles, fish, and small rays, and, if you’re lucky, even dolphins and whales. No previous kayaking experience is needed, and the tour is suitable for all; kids as young as seven can take part. Even better: Shuttle bus transfers are included from Cairns hotels for a convenient trip.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$64.34
From
$64.34

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Great Barrier Reef Eco Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns - Including Lunch

Great Barrier Reef Eco Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns - Including Lunch

star-4.5
Enjoy snorkeling and scuba diving on the outer Great Barrier Reef during a full-day cruise that lets you explore the underwater world. Depart Cairns to cruise out to two sites that are ideal for the day's conditions. Travel on a custom-built boat with ample space for 60 passengers. Your expert guides lead guided snorkel tours with informative commentary and necessary gear provided, helping you to make the most of your time at this Australian natural treasure. Includes morning and afternoon tea, and buffet lunch.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$188.18
From
$188.18

AquaQuest Great Barrier Reef Diving and Snorkeling Cruise from Cairns

AquaQuest Great Barrier Reef Diving and Snorkeling Cruise from Cairns

star-4.5
Get more than four hours to explore the outer Great Barrier Reef on this full-day tour, which offers snorkeling or diving experiences from two different reef locations. You can choose between different options for this experience based on your snorkeling or diving levels. While out on the water, keep an eye out for wildlife, including fish, rays, and turtles.
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  • 8 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$156.82
From
$156.82
Taking safety measures

Cairns Jet Boat Ride

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Cairns Jet Boat Ride

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Get your adrenaline pumping on a Cairns jet boat ride. As you zoom across the waters of Trinity Inlet, hang on tight while the experienced boat captain performs spins and other maneuvers to make sure you stay cool in the splashing water. Admire landmarks from the boat, and keep your eyes open for marine life—you may get lucky and spot a crocodile. It’s a great way to spend 35 minutes in Queensland’s tropical heat.
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  • 35 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$51.16
$56.85
$5.69 savings
From
$51.16
$56.85
$5.69 savings

Hot Air Ballooning Tour from Cairns

Hot Air Ballooning Tour from Cairns

star-4.5
Get a bird’s-eye perspective of Tropical North Queensland on an unforgettable hot air balloon flight at sunrise. Soar over the Atherton Tablelands as golden sunlight breaks across beautiful farmlands, rivers, and forests. Choose the duration of your flights and enjoy pickup and drop-off from your Cairns, Northern Beaches, or Palm Cove hotel. It’s a breathtakingly beautiful way to start your day!
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$195.24
From
$195.24
Taking safety measures

Great Barrier Reef Tour with Indigenous Sea Rangers-Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel

Great Barrier Reef Tour with Indigenous Sea Rangers-Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel

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Explore the underwater wonders of the Great Barrier reef, with an indigenous perspective. This tour offers the unique opportunity to see the sites of the reef and learn about its Aboriginal history. The tour begins with a welcome Aboriginal greeting. Learn about the Reef’s creation story, passed down tens of thousands of years. Snorkel among tropical fish and brilliant coral.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$160.74
From
$160.74
Taking safety measures

Cairns ATV Adventure Tour

Cairns ATV Adventure Tour

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Conquer the rugged off-road terrain around Cairns on an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) on this half-day tour. Follow a guide, who takes care of instructions and navigation, through the rain forest, on dirt tracks, and across creeks. Morning or afternoon tea (depending on tour time) and hotel pickup and drop-off in Cairns make for a seamless, stress-free experience.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$131.39
From
$131.39

Full-Day Great Barrier Reef Sailing Trip

Full-Day Great Barrier Reef Sailing Trip

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Avoid the crowds and experience The Great Barrier Reef the way nature intended. No other operator in this category can offer you this superb personalised service. Join us, and our fun loving crew, for an amazing day on the Great Barrier Reef. Our destination, Upolu Reef, is a very beautiful location situated on the edge of the Outer Barrier Reef, and is teeming with a large variety of interesting marine life and a beautiful array of corals. In the sheltered lagoon you will see a multitude of; giant clams, turtles, sea stars and reef fish. This offers a perfect snorkelling or diving experience in warm clear protected waters. A complementary snorkel guide is available, which offers a fun and informative addition to the day’s exploration.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$116.83
From
$116.83
Taking safety measures

Mulgrave River Tubing from Cairns

Mulgrave River Tubing from Cairns

star-4.5
Get set for a wet and wild adventure as you hurtle down the Mulgrave River on a giant tube! Hang on tight as you navigate small rapids and then soak up the scenery as you drift through the rainforest. This fun-filled morning tour includes hotel pick-up and round-trip transport from Cairns, plus around 2 hours of tubing. Best of all: there’s no experience necessary, so everyone can give it a go!
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  • 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$58.81
From
$58.81
Taking safety measures

Silverswift Outer Great Barrier Reef Dive and Snorkel Cruise from Cairns

Silverswift Outer Great Barrier Reef Dive and Snorkel Cruise from Cairns

star-4.5
Dive into the spectacular underwater realm of the Great Barrier Reef on this full-day snorkel and scuba cruise from Cairns. Travel aboard a luxurious catamaran to three renowned dive sites to swim among coral gardens and tropical marine life. All experience levels are welcome, and guides are on hand to assist with your choice of snorkeling, introductory scuba diving, or certified diving. A buffet lunch plus morning and afternoon tea on the catamaran are included.
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$188.96
From
$188.96
Taking safety measures

Great Barrier Reef Scenic Helicopter Tour and Cruise from Cairns

Great Barrier Reef Scenic Helicopter Tour and Cruise from Cairns

star-4.5
Customize your visit to the Great Barrier Reef from Cairns with your selection from three travel options with a choice of snorkeling, scuba diving, and a one-way or round-trip scenic helicopter tour. Admire views of the Great Barrier Reef from your helicopter as you get a multi-angled perspective on one of the world’s top natural wonders. Then enjoy a close experience of the coral reef by choosing to snorkel or enroll in an optional scuba diving course (additional expense).
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  • 2 to 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$293.24
From
$293.24
Taking safety measures

Passions of Paradise Great Barrier Reef Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns by Luxury Catamaran

Passions of Paradise Great Barrier Reef Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns by Luxury Catamaran

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Go snorkeling or scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef on a full-day cruise from Cairns. Relax on board your 80-foot (25-meter) luxury catamaran as your captain sails to two exclusive locations on the Great Barrier Reef. Choose to snorkel or dive, with full instruction provided by guides, and see an array of colorful fish, sea turtles, and corals. Your tour includes morning and afternoon tea, and a buffet lunch, with additional beverages available for purchase.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$145.05
From
$145.05
Taking safety measures

Great Barrier Reef Luxury Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns

Great Barrier Reef Luxury Snorkel and Dive Cruise from Cairns

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Spend a day on the Great Barrier Reef at two different snorkel and dive sites on this luxury catamaran cruise from Cairns. Travel in style aboard a comfortable catamaran to a mooring off of Upolu Cay. Take a glass-bottom boat to Upolu Cay, then have time to snorkel or scuba dive. Refuel with a buffet lunch on board the catamaran before heading to your next destination, for more water time, including a guided snorkeling tour.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$167.40
From
$167.40
Taking safety measures

Coral Sea Dreaming: Overnight Dive, Snorkel and Sail Experience from Cairns

Coral Sea Dreaming: Overnight Dive, Snorkel and Sail Experience from Cairns

star-5
Take a sailing trip off the beaten path and travel to some of the best remote reef sites around Cairns. This small-group, 2-night sailing trip is limited to 12 people and offers both certified and introductory diving, as well as certification courses, so that even beginner divers can experience the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef such as schools of iridescent fish, turtles, and colorful corals. Choose from private or shared accommodation on board.
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  • 2 days
From
$349.66
From
$349.66

Cairns ATV Adventure Tour and Afternoon Rafting

Cairns ATV Adventure Tour and Afternoon Rafting

star-5
Explore Cairns on an all-day ATV and white-water rafting adventure. After a convenient hotel pickup, travel into a spectacular rainforest, receive a safety briefing, and get outfitted in necessary equipment. Then, ride along trails, over jumps, and through creek crossings on a thrilling off-road ride. Enjoy morning tea and head to Barron Gorge National Park to spend the afternoon paddling rapids in a white-water raft—all on one combo tour.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$267.02
From
$267.02

Kuranda Koala Gardens and Birdworld Admission Tickets

Kuranda Koala Gardens and Birdworld Admission Tickets

star-4
Visit two of the most popular wildlife venues in the Cairns area with this combo admission to the Kuranda Koala Gardens and Birdworld. Aussie animals are renowned for various reasons—from adorable (koalas) to elusive (wombats). You’ll have the chance to see an array of wildlife. Some activities are an additional fee.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$25.87
From
$25.87
Taking safety measures

Cairns ZOOM and Wildlife Dome

Cairns ZOOM and Wildlife Dome

star-4
Get an up-close look at the rainforest from the middle of Cairns at Carins ZOOM and Wildlife Dome. This family-friendly attraction is home to Australian animals like koalas, snakes, tropical birds, and a saltwater crocodile. You can simply explore the park at your leisure, or choose some of the many activities like a ropes course, zipline, dome climb and more. You also have the option to upgrade your admission to the 4 Park Pass if you want to visit other Cairns-area attractions like the Butterfly Sanctuary and Rainforestation.
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  • 1 to 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$19.60
From
$19.60

Skip the Line: Kuranda Rainforestation Nature Park Ticket

Skip the Line: Kuranda Rainforestation Nature Park Ticket

star-4.5
Explore Kuranda's Rainforestation Nature Park, a 100-acre (40-hectare) tropical rainforest and World Heritage site located within five minutes of Kuranda village, accessible from Cairns. Your admission ticket to this family-friendly attraction includes three eco-experiences: see Australia's native animals at the Koala and Wildlife Park; ride the amphibious Army Duck on a unique rainforest tour; watch an Aboriginal Dance Show at the Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience and take a Dreamtime Walk.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$40.77
From
$40.77

Outer Reef Pontoon Experience from Cairns

Outer Reef Pontoon Experience from Cairns

star-4.5
Enjoy the natural delights of the Great Barrier Reef on an activity cruise from Cairns that gives you several ways to experience this renowned underwater world. After traveling by catamaran to a pontoon moored on the reef, you can observe marine life on a glass-bottom boat or semi-submersible vessel; go snorkeling to spot sea turtles; get your hands wet in the touch pool; upgrade to include a Seawalker Helmet dive; or upgrade to include an introductory or certified scuba dive. Snacks and a boxed lunch are included, and the pontoon is equipped with showers.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$156.03
From
$156.03
Taking safety measures

Ocean Spirit Michaelmas Cay Dive and Snorkel Cruise from Cairns

Ocean Spirit Michaelmas Cay Dive and Snorkel Cruise from Cairns

star-4.5
Discover the underwater treasures of the Great Barrier Reef on this full-day catamaran cruise to Michaelmas Cay from Cairns. Snorkel straight from the white sandy beaches to swim among amazing coral gardens and get an up-close encounter with tropical marine life. Go deeper with an optional introductory scuba dive, or admire the reef on a semi-submarine boat tour. Chat with marine biologists to learn about the thousands of migratory seabirds that nest on the protected cay, and refuel with a buffet lunch featuring fresh seafood.
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  • 8 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$177.20
From
$177.20
Taking safety measures

Full Day Rainforest 4WD Tour from Cairns

Full Day Rainforest 4WD Tour from Cairns

star-5
Explore the magnificent nature of Northern Queensland on this eco-friendly safari. After a convenient hotel pickup, travel to a tropical rain forest and see unique wildlife like the cassowary, Boyd’s Rainforest Dragon, and the Musky Rat Kangaroo. Marvel at the 900-year-old “strangler” fig tree and the dramatic changes of scenery. Enjoy hand-made ice cream made from locally grown fruit and a delicious buffet lunch included in the tour price.
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  • 1 day
  • Free Cancellation
From
$173.28
From
$173.28

Full-Day River Pack-River Tubing and White-Water Rafting Adventure from Cairns

Full-Day River Pack-River Tubing and White-Water Rafting Adventure from Cairns

star-4.5
Experience two of Cairns’ finest water adventures without touching the wheel. Start the day with a leisurely tubing trip through the rainforest on the Mulgrave River or Behana Gorge; in the afternoon, tackle the year-round Grade III rapids of the foaming Barron River. Your tour includes tuition, safety equipment, and door-to-door round-trip transfers in a group no larger than 12: A river levy charge is payable on the day.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$132.71
From
$132.71

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