A Cairns holiday has adrenalin activities, leisure opportunities and more on offer

Cairns is best known as the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, one of the world's natural wonders. While the reef is a huge selling point, there's more to Cairns that will entice you to stick around after you have had your fill of snorkelling among colourful corals or off coast island adventures. There's no hurry on a weekend holiday in Cairns – take your time to peruse Rusty's Markets, which have become somewhat of an institution on the local scene, before enjoying lunch at the Esplanade with a quick dip in the Lagoon to relieve the sweet stickiness of the humidity. While unashamedly tourist-focussed, the Night Markets offer a taste of the finest local produce and a hearty dose of multiculturalism.

Cairns: Great Barrier ReefGreat Barrier Reef

For a flavour-infused weekend in Cairns, consider hiring a car and heading up the winding Kuranda Range to the Atherton Tablelands. Just over an hour's drive you will find coffee plantations and boutique wineries ideal for a lunch break and to grab some take-home gifts. Watch the scenery morph from lush rainforest to golden outback as you make your way through the quaint rural towns. Journey north to resort-town Port Douglas where you can join a Daintree River cruise or simply enjoy your stroll along the boutique-lined streets.

Cairns: WaterfrontCairns Waterfront

Those up for a bit of adventure might test their courage with bungee jumping, parachuting over the cane fields or climbing the 922 metre high Walsh's Pyramid. The capital of Far North Queensland boasts a unique part of Australia where kids spend their holidays swimming at Crystal Cascades, fresh fruit and veg are grown en masse just down the down and the weekend is all about enjoyment. Spend a couple of nights in Cairns for open-air adventures, agricultural delights and world-famous natural icons at your fingertips.

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