G'day! Steve Savage here, one of the faces behind Cairns Unlimited. In another life, I spent five years hitchhiking through over thirty countries, living off bread, cheese and fruit from my backpack, sleeping in backpackers hostels or camping in the woods. Of course, not all backpackers travel on such a shoestring budget, but I'm yet to meet a backpacker who enjoys paying more than they have to!

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CAIRNS BACKPACKERS ACCOMMODATION- choosing the right hostel for you, and finding the best price!

Cairns is a fantastic destination within Tropical North Queensland for backpackers and travellers thanks to the wide rage of backpacker accommodation.If you are a backpacker looking for backpackers accommodation in Cairns, you have come to the right place. In our Cairns Backpackers Accommodation page you will find all the backpackers hostels in Cairns listed, each of them with a brief description and their contact details. On the right hand side of the page you will also find a table where we have compared all the Cairns backpackers hostels side by side for your convenience.

Unless you're planning to party non-stop while you're in Cairns, you're going to need somewhere to sleep. And either way, you'll need somewhere to leave your backpack while you're out diving the reef, bungy jumping and judging (or competing in!) the wet t-shirt competition at the local nightspot. Well, you're in luck. There are no less than thirty Cairns backpackers hostels for you to choose from when you book a hostel in Cairns.

Generally, a bunk bed in a shared dormitory will cost around twenty Australia dollars per night, although you may find seasonal variations from as low as $16 up to $26. In Cairns, you will find the Cairns backpackers accommodation that you are looking for, whether it be a share dorm or a private room.

Many of the Cairns backpackers hostels offer private accommodation as well, and for a couple travelling together, this can work out very economical. A private room with shared bathroom will cost around $50 to $60 for a single, and between $30 and $35 per person for a double or twin. These days, with swimming pools a fairly standard feature, and many backpackers hostels offering airconditioning in all rooms, it's all the comfort of a hotel, at half the price!

Each Cairns backpackers hostel has its own unique atmosphere. Some have their own restaurants, others have communal kitchens. Some have both. Some have licenced bars on-site. Some have earnt the well deserved reputation of being party places, while others have strict curfews and pride themselves on their tranquil atmosphere. Whether you're in Cairns to party like there's no tomorrow, or whether you want a quiet, relaxing holiday, Cairns Unlimited can match you with the backpackers hostel that best suits you. And we will make sure that you get the cheapest price!


JJ's backpackers hostel in Cairns offers a range of budget accommodation, including small dorms, singles, doubles and twin rooms with linen, breakfast and dinner included in the price!.JJ's backpackers hostel in Cairns features a swimming pool, fully equipped kitchen, and laundry facilities, and secure off street parking for those with their own car or campervan.
11-13 Charles Street, Cairns (MAP)
Phone (07) 4051 7642 / Fax (07) 4051 7223
Freecall 1800 666 336

Fantastic little hostel with great reviews!

* FREE Breakfast and Wi-Fi!
* TripAdvisor Award for Excellence 2013 - 2017
* Cairns Region Tourism Association Hospitality Awards Finalist
* Repeat winner of Hostelbookers Oceania 'BEST STAFF AWARD'

JJ's is great little hostel that makes you feel at home the minute you walk through the door! Offering a choice of clean and spacious 3 or 4 share dorms, doubles, twins and single rooms with fresh linen, free breakfast and free NBN WIFI included. Fan cooled or air conditioned, the choice is yours.

JJ's has a great reputation for being a friendly, relaxed hostel with lots of fun. It's small enough to get that personal touch yet large enough to make new friends. Guests will enjoy the relaxed sociable atmosphere of this owner operated hostel, close to Cairns City, the Esplanade, shops, gym, pubs, 24 hour supermarket, takeaways and tour departure points. Of course, there is a swimming pool, social nights, fully equipped kitchen & BBQ, Travel Desk, laundry facilities and secure off street parking for those with their own wheels. FREE City, Rail and Bus Terminal pickups.

Don't forget to ask about the great off season & weekly rates!

Gilligans Backpackers Hostel and Resort, in Cairns, Tropical North Queensland, offers 5 star accommodation to suit everybody's taste.Gilligans Backpackers Hostel and Resort is located in Cairns, gateway to the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest.GILLIGANS BACKPACKERS HOTEL & RESORT
57-89 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 6566

The Ritz of all hostels!

Gilligan's is the ultimate experience in accommodation and entertainment set in the heart of Cairns. Offering guests 4.5 star backpacker accommodation, nightly entertainment and a relaxed atmosphere whilst soaking up the sun, why choose to stay anywhere else?

All room types are fully equipped with a full en-suite bathroom, air-conditioning and four floors of communal areas. Or perhaps try the deluxe dormitories; designed to offer that little bit extra. Available in 4 and 6 bed configurations, these rooms offer TVs, refrigerators and all have a private balcony to kick back and relax after a long day at the reef, rainforest or even a lazy day by the pool.

As a Gilligan's guest you receive: Free backpacker meal each night / Free airport pickup / Free linen / Free car parking / Free BBQ Sundays / Free crockery use in kitchens / VIP prices for in house guests

The Serpent, offering great value backpackers and bugdet accommodation in CairnsThe Serpent is conveniently located, close to the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest.NOMADS CAIRNS HOSTEL
341 Lake Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4040 7777

Resort style accommodation at a backpacker price!

Nomads Cairns, North Queensland offers great value backpacker and budget accommodation in Far North Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef. Nomads Cairns is ready to blow your mind with a great Cairns location, only a few minutes walk from the Esplanade. Offering quality accommodation options for backpackers and budget hotel travellers in resort style facilities.

Beat the tropical Cairns heat in their fully air conditioned rooms, lounge around with fellow backpackers and travellers in the chilled-out social areas, or take a dip in the biggest swimming pool you've ever seen in a backpacker hostel.

Set in lush, tropical, landscaped gardens in the heart of Cairns, the Bohemia Hostel Resort offers stunning, modern  accommodation for an affordable, budget price.Choose your affordable Cairns accommodation from a double en-suite room, a share facility, or a hostel style room with 4 or 6 beds, all air-conditioned and some with private balconies.BOHEMIA RESORT
231 Mcleod Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 7290

Light breakfast included daily!

The Bohemia Resort located in Cairns, North Queensland, is first class hostel accommodation. Setting the standard for Cairns and North Queensland in budget and hostel accommodation, this hostel is ideal for every type of traveller. Set in lush, tropical, landscaped gardens in the heart of Cairns, the Bohemia Hostel Resort offers stunning, modern accommodation for an affordable, budget price.

Choose your affordable Cairns accommodation from a double en-suite room, a share facility, or a hostel style room with four or six beds, all air-conditioned and some with private balconies. Free pick up on arrival between 6am - 11pm

Mad Monkey Backpackers Cairns is an oasis in the centre of Cairns City, providing backpackers with quality budget accommodation.Backpackers accommodation is provided in 54 modern fully air-conditioned rooms, you can choose from a Single Rooms, Double Rooms, Queen Rooms, 4 or 6 bed dorms.MAD MONKEY
100 Sheridan Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4231 9871

An oasis in the centre of Cairns City!

Mad Monkey Backpackers Cairns is an oasis in the centre of Cairns City; Cairns newest/oldest accommodation has been fully renovated to retain all the glory and ambiance of a bygone era to create a HIP facility. Relax around the resort pool; watch the sun set on the wide verandahs before you venture down to the new alfresco Café or Drop Zone Bar.

Accommodation is provided in 54 modern fully air-conditioned rooms, you can choose from a single rooms, double rooms, queen rooms, 4 or 6 bed dorms. All have been fully renovated so as to ensure a high level of quality. Open 24 hours a day, our accommodation offers the guest's safety & security at all times.

Castaways Backpackers is located close to Cairns city centre, close to shops, pubs and all the amenities of Cairns.At Castaways Backpackers, in Cairns, guests will feel at home during their holidays in Tropical North Queensland.CASTAWAYS BACKPACKERS
207 Sheridan Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 1238
No bunks. Famous wine and cheese nights!

Castaway's Backpackers is a small, family-run hostel that's clean and friendly, located just minutes from the city centre. Its location means that there are great local shops, pub, supermarket, bakery and a gym only a few minutes away. Castaways has a relaxed and friendly atmosphere and is truly your home away from home. Available to all the guests is a free evening meal each night, and also free email.

The hostel offers everyone clean, spacious rooms, with quality furnishings. At Castaways Backpackers, all rooms have professionally laundered crisp linen, inner spring mattresses, adjustable ceiling fans, fridge, air-conditioned rooms available on request. At Castaway's, there are NO BUNKS and NO FOAM MATTRESSES. Ensuites available

149 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 1474 / Fax (07) 4031 8499
A party backpackers hostel with the 'world famous' Mad Monday Party!! Only minutes walk to the city centre. Laid back atmosphere with a family feel.

239 Sheridan Street, Cairns
With a variety of accommodation options, from dorms, budget doubles/twins, ensuited king and family rooms available it has something to suit all.

20-26 McLeod Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 0772 / Fax (07) 4031 3158
Cairns Central YHA is conveniently located opposite the Cairns Central Shopping Centre. This Cairns hostel has multi-share, twin, double and family rooms available, all air-conditioning and many with ensuites. Facilities for backpackers include a large outdoor games area, kitchen, laundry, etc.

274 Draper Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 6160 / Fax (07) 4031 0756
Cairns City Backpackers Hostel is a small, friendly and cheap hostel only a five minute walk from Cairns Central Shopping Centre. Guests always comment about the great atmosphere they enjoy during their Cairns holidays.

147 Lake Street, Cairns
Phone / Fax (07) 4051 2016
Cairns Girls Hostel is a locally owned and operated business that provides budget accommodation exclusively for both international and Australian women.

17 Scott Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 1875 / Fax (07) 4051 5560
Cairns Sharehouse offer budget rooms to rent in quality furnished share apartments within easy walk of the city, perfect for those looking to work or study in Cairns on a short or long term basis.

83 The Esplanade, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 4411
Cairns Waterfront Backpackers is situated directly across from the beautiful lagoon and just a stroll from the trendiest bars and restaurants.

5 - 9 Digger Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 0910
Built on years of experience and a great reputation, Calypso Inn Backpackers Resort is backpacking at its roots. Calypso offer great services and facilities including FREE regular return transfers to the airport, bus station, city and now FREE WIFI!

149 The Esplanade, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 2431
Catering to budget travellers, Caravella Backpackers offers comfortable, clean, private or share accommodation and a wide range of facilities - either share or private, air-conditioning, fans, luggage storage, laundry facilities, telephone, video and courtesy coach transfers.

72 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 5288
Corona Backpackers is located in Cairns city centre. They offer only dormitory style accommodation, accommodating up to four people in each shared room. Courtesy pick up and free evening meal at the Woolshed.

4 Terminus Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 6753 / Fax (07) 4031 6566
Dreamtime Travellers Rest is Cairns' smallest backpackers, providing clean, comfortable accommodation in a relaxed homely atmosphere. Dreamtime is a Queenslander home located in a quiet street just minutes walk from the city of Cairns.

187 Bunda Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 1344 / Fax (07) 4051 5150
If you want a small hostel with only 40 beds and no bunks this is the place for you. Geckos backpackers accommodation is close to the centre of town but in a quiet area... they guarantee a good nights sleep.

57-89 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 6566 / Fax (07) 4041 6577
All room types are fully equipped with a full en-suite bathroom, air-conditioning and four floors of communal areas.

67-69 The Esplanade, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 1545 / Fax (07) 4031 3804
At Global Waterfront, the Esplanade lagoon is directly opposite you, so you can cook a BBQ, swim, enjoy free fitness classes or simply chill-out and enjoy all the tropics has to offer. At Global Waterfront, all rooms are air-conditioned, with linen supplied.

154-156 Lake Street, Cairns
Mobile 0419 744 431 / Fax (07) 4033 6665
Globetrotters International is a backpackers hostel located close to the CBD. The hostel has share rooms as well as double and twin rooms. All rooms are air conditioned. Guests can enjoy a swimming pool and free cable TV. Minimun three nights stay.

Corner Spence and Sheridan Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 2490 / Fax (07) 4051 2288
The Jack is one of the best places to meet locals – and the atmosphere is unforgettable. With four different bars, a beer garden, great meal deals at the bistro, big screens everywhere you look, pool tables, a gaming lounge and free entertainment 5 nights a week, not to mention their regular big events.

93A Esplanade, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 1368
The Jazz Cairns Cairns is a bright, modern backpacker hostel situated right in the heart of the Cairns city centre and just a short walk from the popular Esplanade.

137 Lake Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 4933
Koala Beach Resort offers shared domritory rooms and private rooms.

136 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 0249
Woodduck Backpackers (formerly Rosie's) have a variety of different rooms, ranging from 4-share dormitories to twin or double rooms. There's also an en-suite, private triple room available. Free pick up and free evening meal.

(Formerly Inn the Tropics)
141 Sheridan Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 1088
With FREE airport pick-up and drop-off and courtesy bus, our Njoy! crew are here for you! Lounge around our lush lagoon-style pool, refresh with a drink in our palm-fringed sunny outdoor area or take on fellow travellers at a game of pool. Catch up on your emails with our WIFI, now available in every room with FREE WIFI in the reception area, or kick back with a free movie every night.

117 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4047 7200 / Fax (07) 4041 6822
Situated in the heart of Cairns, The Northern Greenhouse is a purpose built world-class facility. Modern double, twin, dorm or self-contained studio apartments are available at nightly or weekly rates.

140 Grafton Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 5255 / Fax (07) 4041 6255
Reef Backpackers offers backpackers accommodation just one block from the heart of Cairns, and an ideal location from which to explore our tropical north, including the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest.

18 Terminus Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4051 4734
Ryans Rest Guesthouse is a classic timber Queenslander which has been converted into an accommodation house with three flats and a range of guest rooms.

85-87 The Esplanade, Cairns
Phone (07) 4031 4377 / Fax (07) 4031 2850
Located just across the Cairns Esplanade, The Bellview caters for all budget conscious travellers looking for secure and comfortable accommodation with single, double, twin rooms, dormitories and motel-style rooms and a swimming pool.

8 Scott Street, Cairns
Phone (07) 4052 1377 / Fax (07) 40416 456
Travellers Oasis is a haven for all travellers looking for budget accommodation. You can choose from different accommodation styles: doubles, twins, singles and dorms. All our rooms are equipped with fresh linen and towels. Pick up from airport and bus station.

28 Bunting Street, Westcourt,Cairns
Phone (07) 4041 1521 / Fax (07) 4031 6576
Tropic Days is a very clean and cosy hostel, with small dorms, comfy doubles with TV's, a relaxing garden with hammocks and more. This is a family run backpackers hostel, offering clean and budget accommodation, a place you can feel at home.


Oz Experience offers backpackers a different budget travel experience in Tropical North Queensland. Once you get to Cairns, there are a great range of options for getting around. When you book your hostel accommodation or rental car through Cairns Unlimited, we can arrange to have you picked up from the airport, train station or bus station on your arrival. Most of the hostels are quite centrally located, and any that are more than a short walk from the city centre offer free shuttle bus services all day and into the night. Be assured that all of the attractions around Cairns are serviced quite thoroughly by tour operators...

Of course, there's nothing like having your own Cairns rental car. Having the freedom and flexibility to go wherever you want and stop whenever you want. So unless you are preparing to buy a car, you'll be needing a rental.

Car hire is big business in Cairns, with all of the major national and international car hire companies represented, as well as a number of reputable, established, locally owned enterprises. It's a competitive industry, and here at Cairns Unlimited, we can get you the best deal possible on that rental car that suits your needs.

If you are under 21 but still want to rent a car in Cairns, Cairns Unlimited will find you the best deal on a car hire. Several Cairns rental car companies have as part of their fleet a number of reliable older vehicles which they rent at lower rates than their new vehicles. Often, they don't advertise these "cheapies" too enthusiastically because there's not so many $$$ in it for them. But don't worry, we know where they are! If you want to spend the absolute minimum on rental car, and you don't mind if the vehicle is a well maintained older model, just make a clear note of this in the 'extra information' field when you fill in the enquiry form on our CAIRNS CAR HIRE page.

It's worth noting that not all of these older vehicles have airconditioning (in fact the non-airconditioned vehicles are even cheaper) but this is the tropics and it does get might hot and humid, so we recommend that you also request an airconditioned car.

Find the best deal on a Cairns rental car or campervan for your Cairns holidays with Cairns Unlimited.But what about renting a campervan? If you are a backpacker looking to travel around Tropical North Queensland on a budget, this is the one for you. No problem, just fill out our ONLINE ENQUIRY FORM as normal, but in the 'extra information' field, give us the details of what sort of vehicle you need.

THINGS TO DO- hell, you can do just about anything here ... except skiing and ice fishing!

Cairns and Tropical North Queensland is a haven for those looking to have the time of their lives. There's an activity to suit every taste and budget and surely you won't have time to be bored. Please visit our main TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND ACTIVITIES section or our TROPICAL NORTH QUEENSLAND TOURS section and discover all there's awaiting you out there.

CAIRNS NIGHTLIFE- restaurants, bars, pubs, clubs, and wet t-shirt competitions!

Someone commented to me once about the lack of nightlife in Cairns. Well, if you're not finding nightlife in Cairns, my friend, you just ain't looking for it. I find too damn much of it every time I go out! The city centre of Cairns is alive with all kinds of bars and pubs, lounges, night clubs, live music venues and dance clubs. And after dark the backpacker bars turn up the music and ....

We are still in the process of obtaining details from the various hostels and bars. In the meantime, please check our main CAIRNS NIGHTLIFE section.