Destination guide

Beach getaway in Cairns holiday homes to rent

Cairns is a laid-back city and the gateway to the tropical north, offering endless opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to explore the landscape. From the Great Barrier Reef and the rainforest to the bustling markets and idyllic beaches, Cairns holiday homes to rent put you in the heart of a tropical oasis.


Heritage sites near Cairns holiday rentals

With its long, rich history and infusion of different cultures, Cairns has plenty of historic sites of interest for enthusiasts. Holiday homes can be found near such heritage attractions as the Australian Armour and Artillery Museum, a large museum with armoured vehicles dating back to the 1800s, and Paronella Park, a historic area with Spanish-inspired buildings, a vintage hydroelectric generator and nearby waterfalls. Both art and history lovers will enjoy the Cairns Art Gallery, an elegant gallery of Australian art within a restored, century-old government building and St Monica’s Old Cathedral, a heritage-listed former Roman Catholic cathedral with stunning architecture.

Things to do

Activities near Cairns holiday homes

With its tropical landscape and variety of outdoor excursions, Cairns is the perfect place for nature enthusiasts. Holiday rentals can be found near Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, which has enclosed gondola rides over the rainforest canopy for excellent sights, and the Cairns Railway Station, a historic train that travels through the protected areas of the rainforest. Palm Cove, a beachside suburb with palm-lined beaches, coral reefs and seaside shops and restaurants, and the Rainforestation Nature Park, a tropical garden environment and nature reserve with exotic plants and wildlife, are also must-see attractions.


Activities and attractions in Cairns

Are you searching for attractions to visit during your stay? Venture out of your cosy holiday rental and experience everything that makes Cairns a fun place to get away to. Here are some of the top attractions to see, all within 30 miles (48.2 km) of the city centre:

  • Skyrail Rainforest Cableway (7 mi / 11.3 km)
  • Cairns Aquarium (2.7 mi / 4.4 km)
  • Cairns Golf Club (2.8 mi / 4.6 km)
  • Esplanade Lagoon (3 mi / 4.9 km)
  • Cairns Zoom and Wildlife Dome (3.1 mi / 5 km)
  • ZOO To You HQ Wildlife Discovery Centre (3.1 mi / 5.1 km)
Outdoor activities

Outdoor fun near Cairns holiday homes

Mangrove forests, sugar-white beaches, sapphire waters, rainforest trails, coral cays and the Great Barrier Reef provide the perfect backdrop for everything from leisurely outdoor exploration to adrenaline-fueled fun. Diving, snorkelling, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, hiking, bushwalking and ocean cruises are the most popular activities for outdoor enthusiasts of different skill levels. Surfing, zip lining, canopy walks, parasailing, hang gliding and bungee jumping in different environments offer a little more adventure and excitement for thrill seekers. Nature walks, dolphin tours and wildlife tours are also popular.

Natural highlights

Exploring the coral reefs and other natural features in Cairns

Travellers love Cairns for its lush rainforest and pristine beaches. Whether you're an outdoor enthusiast or just want to appreciate the scenery, Cairns is a great spot to appreciate mother nature. Here are some of the area’s most eye-catching sights, all within 30 miles (48.2 km) of the city centre:

  • Great Barrier Reef (19.1 mi / 30.7 km)
  • Centenary Lakes Botanic Gardens (1.8 mi / 2.9 km)
  • Mount Whitfield Conservation Park (2.2 mi / 3.6 km)
  • Flecker Botanic Gardens (2.1 mi / 3.3 km)
  • Red Arrow Walk (2.2 mi / 3.6 km)
  • Cairns Esplanade Charles Street Parkland (2.5 mi / 4 km)

Holiday homes near Cairns beaches

Rimmed by the Great Barrier Reef, Cairns beaches offer excellent swimming, snorkelling and hiking opportunities to explore the environment. Fitzroy Island, a large, tropical island with sandy beaches and rainforest hiking trails, and Double Island, an island close to the coast with soft-sand beaches and sea kayaking, are popular spots. Daintree National Park, a protected mountain rainforest with beaches, turquoise waters and hiking trails, is a great place to view wildlife and enjoy a swim. For families with children, the Cairns City Beach has shallow water for wading and recreation.

How to get there

Transport options to and around Cairns

The nearest airport is in Cairns, QLD (CNS-Cairns Intl.), located 3.6 mi (5.8 km) from the city centre.

If you prefer to travel by train, Cairns Station, Freshwater Station and Redlynch Station are the main stations in the city.

Food & drink 

Sample regional delicacies in Cairns

Cairns has a thriving cafe scene located in Grafton and Spence streets. Dishes like chilli eggs and French toast, cold-drip coffee, coconut lattes and hazelnut ice cream are popular staples in the area, along with Asian fusion and traditional Greek dishes. In Cairns, the balmy weather turns dining into an al fresco experience, with many of the cafes and eateries offering outdoor seating so you can enjoy the landscape along with your meal. Whatever you’re in the mood for, you’ll find a wide selection of eateries near your holiday accommodation.

Where to stay near Cairns?

Our 2019 accommodation listings offer a large selection of 190 holiday rentals near Cairns. From 65 Houses to 111 Condos/Apartments, find unique holiday homes for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best place to stay near Cairns for a long holiday or a weekend break is on HomeAway.

What are the most popular points of interest and landmarks to stay near when travelling to Cairns?

HomeAway offers a large selection of holiday homes near great places in Cairns. From HomeAway travellers, the most popular points of interest to stay near are:

  • Cairns Esplanade: 559 holiday rentals
  • Cairns Convention Centre: 562 holiday rentals
  • Cairns Regional Gallery: 562 holiday rentals
  • Reef Hotel Casino: 562 holiday rentals
  • St Monica's Cathedral: 561 holiday rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Cairns listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Please use our search bar to access the selection of holiday rentals available near the point of interest of your choice.

Can I rent Houses in Cairns?

Yes, of course. HomeAway offers 65 Houses in Cairns. Our other popular types of Cairns holiday rentals include:

  • Condos/Apartments: 111 holiday houses
  • Townhouses: 3 holiday houses
  • Studios: 114 holiday houses

But you can also enjoy a great stay in one of our other holiday rentals including Resorts and more.

Can I find a holiday accommodation with pool in Cairns?

Yes, you can select your preferred holiday accommodation with pool among our 120 holiday homes with pool available in Cairns. Please use our search bar to access the selection of holiday rentals available.