Insider's Guide to Cairns & the Tropical North

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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  • Address: Atherton Tablelands
The sweltering heat of Cairns in northern Queensland is a sweating contradiction to the lush, fertile landscape of the Atherton Tablelands. An easy hour and a half drive inland, the towns of Mareeba and Atherton are an oasis from the heat and bustle of one of Australia’s larger tropical cities.

The Atherton Tablelands cover an area of 32,000 square kilometres and their altitude ranges from 500 to 1280 metres above sea level. The distinctive climatic conditions lend themselves to a diverse and arrestingly photogenic range of natural phenomena. No less than 12 species of birdlife are unique to the tablelands, which encompasses pockets of the forest that once covered it, now protected as National Park.

With a high yearly rainfall, waterfalls in the area are abundant and active. Local attractions include platypus watching, boat cruises and hot air ballooning, and the region is famous for its produce markets and wineries.  Bird watchers and bushwalkers will find an immense selection of nature trails that are well-maintained and cater to all fitness levels.

The Atherton Tablelands is a place to be savoured and enjoyed, explored via adventurous day trips, and immersing oneself in the rich and vibrant lifestyle the area has to offer.

Tours & Tickets

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Atherton Tablelands Tour from Cairns

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 4 Reviews

Location: Cairns, Australia
Duration: 12 hours

From USD $71.73

Atherton Tablelands Food and Wine Tour from Cairns

4.5 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Location: Cairns, Australia
Duration: 10 hours

From USD $132.70

Atherton Tablelands Rainforest Wildlife Tour by Night

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 16 Reviews

Location: Cairns, Australia
Duration: 8 hours 30 minutes

From USD $142.74

Best Kuranda Rainforest Night Adventure Tour by Hummer

Location: Cairns, Australia
Duration: 4 hours

From USD $107.59

Cairns Attractions Pass Including Fitzroy Island and Cairns Wildlife Dome

Location: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Hobart
Duration: Flexible

From USD $89.66

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