GETTING TO CAIRNS
I guess this is really the first step. Once you've realized that Cairns is your perfect destination, you'll want to figure out how to get there. Well, don't worry, we've got all the information you need to make your decision, and we'll hook you up with the best deal on whatever mode of transport you choose.
ALL PRICES ON THIS PAGE ARE IN AUSTRALIAN DOLLARS, AND ARE CORRECT AT THE TIME OF WRITING. PLEASE USE THE LINKS IN THE RIGHT COLUMN TO GO TO THE SECTION OF YOUR CHOICE.
COMING FROM INTERSTATE
The launch of Virgin Blue Airlines in 2000 has seen a real 'shake-up' in the domestic airline industry, with Qantas quick to introduce its own cut-price subsidiary airline, Jetstar.
Flight times are approximately three hours from Sydney, and four hours from Melbourne. Flight prices start from around $160 one-way from Sydney or Melbourne, but in the current competitive environment, the airlines have regular promotions and online specials, so travelling by air can in many cases be less expensive than by train or bus.
BY ROADIt's a big country - and driving distances can be greater than many visitors are prepared for - but we believe that the grandeur and vastness of Australia can be best experienced form behind the wheel of your own vehicle. For the freedom and flexibility to explore at your own pace, please visit our CAR HIRE page. We may be called Cairns Unlimited, but we can get you a great deal on a rental car, four wheel drive or campervan anywhere! Simply fill out our obligation free enquiry form, and we will get back to you - usually the next working day - with the best deal on a vehicle to suit your needs.
Many backpackers, who are in Australia on a twelve month (or two year) WORKING HOLIDAY VISA choose to buy their own car on arrival, and sell it before they leave. This can be a great way to see the country, but be aware OF OUR REGISTRATION regulations, and allow a budget to cover maintenance and possible repairs. Also, take note when you drive a hard bargain buying that old Ford Falcon from a backpacker who is ready to leave Australia with his visa fast running out ... that will be you in six or twelve months time!
Whether you're driving a rental vehicle, or your own car, it's handy to know where you're headed, so we've included some useful maps on our MAPS AND INFORMATION page. And if you're coming from overseas, don't forget to check out our important information about DRIVING IN AUSTRALIA.
Australia's leading coach company with a network spanning the entire country, Greyhound operate 365 days a year and travel to over 1,100 destinations daily. Ideal for adventure travel, Greyhound's choice of Passes offer hop on hop off travel from many destinations to Cairns.
Oz Experience runs a fleet of 24 seat minibuses, and offers a jump-on, jump-off service, primarily aimed at adventurous backpackers. Oz Experience cover a number of different routes, and have passes available, from a standard $284 Sydney to Cairns pass, valid for up to six months, to a $400 Sydney to Cairns pass, taking in more destinations along the way... right up to a $1100 Darwin to Cairns (via Sydney!) pass, which is valid for twelve months.
BY RAILIf you have the time to spare, and you would like to actually see some of the countryside along the way, Australia's rail network offers a comfortable and convenient way to travel, although as you can see from the map, it is hardly a comprehensive network.. for example, a train ride from Darwin to Cairns would be a very long ride indeed!
Unfortunately, rail travel in Australia is a fragmented arrangement, with a number of different operators, each having their own ticketing system. Visitors can find the whole concept of interstate rail travel unnecessarily confusing and complicated. Don't let this discourage you; we're here to help. Just with your enquiry and we will sort through the complexities, and get back to you with a simple, easy to understand itinerary, along with the relevant schedules and fares. Once in Brisbane, your choices are simple - see 'coming from South Queensland', below.