Cairns Motorhome Holiday Guide

Are you eager to escape the winter in the south? Cairns in North Queensland is the perfect Australian escape with its warm tropical weather. Home to some of the world's most unique wildlife, the Great Barrier Reef and the world's oldest rainforest! Cairns is a tropical paradise for a family motorhome holiday.

A road trip in a campervan or motorhome is the best and most cost-effective way to Experience North Queensland's unique beaches, iconic coastal drives and beautiful waterfalls. 

There are some absolute must-dos when travelling through Cairns in a motorhome. Here are some of our recommendations, which should help you have the best possible Queensland experience:  


Choose your Great Barrier Reef Experience

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most significant and iconic landmarks in the world! There are many activities and tours to experience the Great Barrier Reef - like floating pontoons, snorkelling, diving, submarines or even a private yacht tour! Do your research about the reef ahead of time, and try and choose a tour that actively showcases their priority for keeping the reef protected.

Download the Reef Zoning App ahead of time; this is a great way to pick an ideal location, parking, sightseeing options and general information on the Great Barrier Reef. 

Great Barrier Reef Experience


Discover the world's oldest tropical rainforest

The tropical rainforest has survived for millions of years from the time when Dinosaurs wandered the earth. Wet Tropics of Cairns is one of the most amazing things you'll ever experience when travelling in Australia. David Attenborough himself has called Topical North Queensland's rainforests the most extraordinary place on earth. 

Walking or hiking through the world heritage area is a must-do when holidaying in Cairns. The tropical rainforests here have survived millions of years and are home to over 650 species! There are many scenic trails to explore; see Tropical North Queensland's Hiking Guide.

Home to more than 650 species of vertebrates and 230 types of butterflies, hundreds of tiny creatures, reptiles and mammals. Sheltering 47 animals and 227 threatened plant species makes this World Heritage-listed rainforest region an Arcadian ark of global significance. (ref: Tropical North Queensland). 


Research the wildlife

Hiking through the tropical rainforests of North Queensland or driving along its coast, you should have some knowledge of the native wildlife. Cassowaries are the most iconic bird in Queensland: you're likely to cross paths during your Cairns adventure! These large birds are known as living dinosaurs! Cassowaries are beautiful and important species, best viewed from a distance because of their unpredictable nature. Visit Tropical North Queensland for more info on Everything You Need to Know About Cassowaries

Research the wildlife


Do chase waterfalls

TLC sang in their 1994 classic Waterfalls, … "Don't go chasing waterfalls, please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you're used to" - but this couldn't be more wrong when exploring Cairns and its surrounds! There are so many iconic waterfalls to be discovered; some of the best include Barron Falls, Milla Milla Waterfall & Josephine Falls. While most travellers opt for paid bus tours to explore the waterfalls, you can have an epic self-guided adventure with our motorhomes or campervans! There are many ways to experience the falls, from swimming, picnicking in front of or sightseeing from above - map out your itinerary with this helpful guide on Top Waterfalls in Tropical North Queensland

chase waterfalls


Take part in a Cultural Experience

While visiting Cairns, try and take part in an Aboriginal Cultural Tour and learn about the history of the native tribes of the Tropical North Queensland. A cultural tour will leave you with great knowledge about the spiritual significance of the rainforest, mountains, rivers and the sea to the native custodians of the land. You may want to spend the day exploring the region with a local guide or take advantage of your motorhome with a self-driving tour. There are plenty of great options, and it's worth looking at the Tour Specialists: Aboriginal Experiences Guide


Relax by the beach

Of course, The Great Barrier Reef and the abundance of heritage rainforest isn't the only thing Cairns is famous for! People holiday from all over the world to indulge on the beaches here! Iconic palm trees and blue seas surround so many seaside towns to stop and spend a relaxing day. Do your research ahead of time for the Best Beaches in Tropical Queensland. While many beaches are great for swimming in, others are not due to being in prime crocodile territory. It is highly recommended you read signage and only swim where there are dedicated lifeguards.

Relax by the beach 


Pack the essentials

So, what else should you pack when going on a motorhome holiday through Cairns? Read our guide on Preparing for Your Motorhome Holiday for great tips and tricks. Your Queensland holiday will be a lot easier if you pack these items:

    • Slides, thongs or sandals
    • Bug spray
    • Sun protection (sunscreen, hat & UV protective sunglasses)
    • Suitable clothes, something for every climate
    • First Aid Kit
    • Walking Boots
    • Swimwear
    • Beach Towels

Pack the essentials


Book your campsites ahead of time

Cairns is a paradise for motorhome and campervan Travellers, thanks to the many accessible and beautiful campsites and holiday parks. A great way to source motorhome friendly campgrounds is to download the app Aircamp Australia, which has listed the 10 Best Powered Camping Sites in Cairns. Once settled into your site, don't forget to take advantage of your motorhome's awning – so crucial for shade on those sunny days relaxing in Cairns!

If you are holidaying in a peak period, it's best to book your stay in advance. 

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