The tropical city of Cairns in Northern Queensland is a chilled-out city and a popular backpacker spot, with fun bars and pubs like The Woolshed and Gilligan's. You'll meet some travellers just finishing their trip along the East Coast, whilst others will just be embarking on their Australian adventure. The city has a public lagoon where locals and tourists go for a refreshing swim to cool off from the hot, humid weather. Cairns is Queensland's adventure capital, so the city also has many tour companies offering scenic flights, cruises to the Great Barrier Reef, bungee jumping, skydiving, white water rafting and coach tours to the rainforest.
The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef on the planet and can even be seen from outer space. There's a whole underwater world for you to explore with an abundance of marine life and tropical fish. You can do a reef trip from Cairns or perhaps take a boat from Cape Tribulation, where the water is cleaner and the coral more pristine. From day trips to longer cruises, there are all sorts of excursions to snorkel or dive over the Barrier Reef.
You can get wet 'n' wild by white water rafting down one of three mighty rivers; the Tully River, the Barron River or the North Johnstone River. Not only is white water rafting fun and exciting, it's also a great way to make some friends. You can choose packages with different levels of difficulty depending on how fast you want the rapids to be. For another thrilling ride, the Thunderbolt is a fast boat that will take you from Cairns to Fitzroy Island and around the Whitsundays at a speed of 80km/hr!
If you want to scare yourself half to death you can go bungee jumping off a 50m tower in the middle of the rainforest. The bungee jump constructed by extreme sportsman AJ Hackett is the only bungee jump in the whole of the country. You can also choose which way you want to jump from a menu offering 16 jump styles. If you're addicted to the adrenaline rush, you can try the Minjin Swing, which is a multi-person swing that swoops through the jungle from a height of 45 metres to 1 metre at a speed of 120km/hr.
The Daintree Rainforest is a World Heritage Listed rainforest and a highlight of any trip to Cairns and Northern Queensland. There are lots of tours that venture to the Daintree Rainforest, including 4WD safaris, Aboriginal-guided walking tours, coach tours and river wildlife cruises. The rainforest is the largest chunk of rainforest in Australia and is inhabited by frogs, reptiles, marsupials, bats, butterflies, birds and many other types of wildlife.
For an aerial view of the Great Barrier Reef and the rainforest, there are several companies offering scenic flights in helicopters and seaplanes. From above you'll see dazzling turquoise waters, emerald green rainforest, white sand beaches and island cays. It's the ideal opportunity to capture that perfect shot of the Barrier Reef from a birds eye view. If you'd rather fly in Top Gun style with some aerobatics and manoeuvres you can take the flight of your life in a military fighter aircraft with Warbird Air Adventures.