If you’re heading to Cairns, chances are you’ve already booked your awesome Great Barrier Reef tour. But what else is there to do it this city?
If you’ve got a few free days in Cairns you definitely won’t be bored! The city has plenty on offer that’ll keep you dry and out of the ocean for a little bit.
St Monica’s Cathedral
St Monica’s Cathedral is a unique church in more than one way. Initially built as a war memorial commemorating the Battle of the Coral Sea, the cathedral has become known for its incredible stain glass windows.
At the east end, a series of windows celebrate 50 years of peace in the Pacific. The windows are surrounded by the word peace in 49 languages so that visitors from across the world will always receive the message of peace.
Lining the pews are 24 beautifully crafted windows depicting the creation story told in the book of Genesis. The style of these windows is unlike anything you will have seen in any church before. They a bold, bright, and modern, uniquely telling the Genesis story.
When visiting the church an audio guide is available, telling the story of each window as well as a history to their creation.
Flecker Botanic Gardens
Established in 1886, Flecker Botanic Gardens are the best place to see well established tropical plant species.
There are hundreds of tropical species scattered throughout the park that can only be found in this part of the country. Some of the rarest plants in the world can be found here such as the Amorphophallus Titanum, which leaves can grow to a mammoth 7m wide! The plant here is one of only two in Australia.
Tropical climates bring out some of the most vibrant plants in the world. See the nepenthes, a clever carnivorous plant that lures bugs into its sweet nectar filled jug-like flowers. Colourful orchids pepper the gardens with delightful pops of colour.
There is so much to see at the Flecker Botanic Gardens, even those without a green thumb will love them!
Barron Falls is a steep tiered waterfall crashing from the Atherton Tablelands to Cairns.
The falls, nestled in the delightful Barron Gorge National Park, are quite the sight to see. Explore the lower areas of the park and follow the winding trails to connect with nature. The falls are so ferocious that standing on the lookout beside them you can feel the water spraying you!
There are plenty of walks around the park you can explore. Discover what makes this part of Australia so amazing. While you’re here, head out to Surprise Creek falls for something truly special. You have to cross two rivers to get there then make a short walk through the monsoon forest. Trust us when we say it is well worth the effort.
As you can see, Cairns is so much more than just the Great Barrier Reef! There are so many other things that make this city beautiful that it would be a waste to leave without exploring.
Related article: The Ultimate Cairns Adventure!
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