8 days in Cairns Region, Townsville & Airlie Beach Itinerary

8 days in Cairns Region, Townsville & Airlie Beach Itinerary

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Route & dates

8 days in Cairns Region, Townsville & Airlie Beach Itinerary

Start: Melbourne
Fly:  5​h 45​min
1
Cairns
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h 15​min
2
Townsville
— 1 night
bus:  3​h 45​min
3
Airlie Beach
— 3 nights
+2
bus + taxi + Fly:  6​h
End: Melbourne

3
nights
Cairns

A neat, cosmopolitan city of shaded plazas and laid-back neighborhoods, Cairns serves as a popular base for exploration of the surrounding region and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as a center for watersport activities like surfing or waterskiing.
Attractions like Palm Cove Beach and Trinity Beach make great kid-friendly stops. Change things up with these side-trips from Cairns: Palm Cove (Annie's Ladies Boutique & Spas). Spend the 9th (Sun) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Next up on the itinerary: stroll through Esplanade Boardwalk, enjoy some diversion at Esplanade Lagoon Pool, admire the natural beauty at Botanical Gardens, and let little ones run wild at Muddy's Playground.

For ratings, traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, use the Cairns travel route planning tool .

Melbourne to Cairns is an approximately 6-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a train. Expect much hotter temperatures when traveling from Melbourne in June; daily highs in Cairns reach 30°C and lows reach 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Townsville.

Things to do in Cairns

Outdoors Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

Palm Cove, Trinity Beach
Find places to stay Jun 8 — 11:
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Scuba & Snorkeling
Trinity Beach ©
Trinity Beach
Palm Cove Beach ©
Palm Cove Beach

1
night
Townsville

Townsville ©
Tucked snugly beneath a steep, craggy mount--known as Castle Hill--the vibrant city of Townsville is as picturesque as its backdrop.
Start off your visit on the 12th (Wed): go for a walk through Castle Hill, head off the coast to Museum of Tropical Queensland, and then kick back and relax at The Strand.

To find photos, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Townsville planner .

Traveling by flight from Cairns to Townsville takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Expect slightly colder evenings in Townsville when traveling from Cairns in June, with lows around 18°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Wed) early enough to catcht the bus to Airlie Beach.

Things to do in Townsville

Parks Outdoors Museums
Find places to stay Jun 11 — 12:
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The Strand ©
The Strand
Castle Hill
Castle Hill
Museum of Tropical Queensland ©
Museum of Tropical Queensland

3
nights
Airlie Beach

Very much a town with an emphasis on the tropical lifestyle, Airlie Beach offers exotic surroundings with palm trees and charming, sandy beaches.
Spend the 15th (Sat) among aquatic life with a scuba or snorkeling tour. On the 13th (Thu), spend a thrilling day on the water with a speed boat tour. The adventure continues: get some thrills out on the water with a waterskiing or jet-skiing adventure, enjoy the sand and surf at Airlie Beach Lagoon, look for gifts at Grotty Yachty Clothing, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

For photos, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Airlie Beach trip itinerary maker tool .

You can take a bus from Townsville to Airlie Beach in 4 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of train and bus. When traveling from Townsville in June, plan for a bit cooler days in Airlie Beach, with highs around 26°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 21°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Airlie Beach

Outdoors Tours Wildlife
Find places to stay Jun 12 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Waterskiing & Jetskiing
Airlie Beach Lagoon ©
Airlie Beach Lagoon
Scuba & Snorkeling

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