The coastal waters that fringe Tropical North Queensland are the home of an abundance of idyllic tropical island wonderlands. Cairns Island Tours are easily accessible from Cairns and Port Douglas with a range of tropical Cairns island tours allowing visitors the opportunity to spend a half or full day taking in the tropical ambiance of the Great Barrier Reef. A great range of activities are available on all of our favourite Cairns Island tours, but to allow you to get a feel for the Island to most suit your needs, here is a snapshot of what you can expect from the famous Tropical North Queensland.
Which Island is the Best option for ME?
Green Island is a coral island which lies some 27 Kilometres off the coast of Cairns. Easily accessible by a number of companies, the transfer from Cairns to Green Island takes approximately 45 minutes by fast catamaran. Green Island is a unique tropical Island in that it supports a wide diversity of island rainforest that survive without any natural supply of fresh water from a natural spring but rather from a reservoir which efficiently stores and supplies this mini eco system with fresh water. The Island has long been regarded as on of the most iconic Island in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, and offers visitors a range on shore and in water activities to fill your day. On shore activities include a marine animal park – Marine Land Melanesia, bush walking around the island (approx 45 minutes walk circumference) a 5 star resort with swimming pool and food and beverage outlets, as well as a host of beach hire activities including beach volleyball. In water activities include Snorkelling, scuba diving, sea kayaking, paddle board, wind surfing, glass bottom boat, semi submersible submarine. Green Island offers flexible transfers times allowing for full, half or three quarter day experiences.
Often referred to as the “Local Island” Fitzroy Island is a hidden treasure located some 29 Kilometres from the port of Cairns, and accessible by a number of reef operators. The transfer trip from Cairns to Fitzroy Island is only 45 minutes by air conditioned catamaran, which hugs rugged coast line to the south west of Cairns, before crossing the straight adjacent to the aboriginal community of Yarrabah. In 2010 the Fitzroy Island Resort was re-commissioned and a great deal of investment has been made on the Island which now rightfully positions as one of the most spectacular Tropical Island of the Great Barrier Reef.
Fitzroy Island boasts some of Far North Queensland best rainforest walks and the mountainous topography makes this an excellent choice for the more adventurous travellers. The most challenging walk takes you to the top of the highest point of the Island to the Fitzroy Island Light House (now decommissioned) which affords some of the most spectacular views out to the Outer Reef available in the region. Our favourite Walk however takes us along the western ridge of the Island through a moderately challenging boulder track, and all the way through to the Famous Nudey Beach (Don’t be fooled by it’s name it is not an active Nudist Beach, but offers a secluded cove great for relaxing and sunbathing). Trips to Fitzroy Island can be done in a full or half day, and overnight accommodation at the well appointed resort is very well priced. Fitzroy Island also boast one of TNQ most picturesque and least utilized camp ground.
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The Frankland Island group is a collection 5 tropical Islands located some 30 Kilometres off the coast of Babinda (Approximately 45 Klms south of Cairns). Of the 5 protected Island permits for day visits are only available to Russell Island and are conducted by reputable Reef operators – Frankland Island Cruise and Dive. Access to Russell Island is first by coach to Babinda, where visitors will board your vessel. The first part of you day take you on a 20 minute river cruise where you ware engulfed by ancient rainforest, and have a very real chance of seeing a crocodile in it’s natural habitat. Once you hit the mouth of the Russell River it is only a short 30 minute transfer across to Russell Island where you secluded island getaway awaits. Maximum numbers permitted on this Island Tour are 100 so you are assured of quality service and great attention to detail. Russell Island is a renowned nesting place for the magnificent Green Sea Turtle and it’s waters are teeming with marine life.
An important Shipping landmark, the Low Isles is Situated just 13kilometres off the Coast of Resort town Port Douglas. The Island is home to a historic Light House which was commissioned in 1876, and when it was built in 1878 became the first lighthouse in Tropical North Queensland and perhaps more importantly the only light house to mark out the inner passage to the Great Barrier Reef. Apart from the history of the Lighthoue itself, the Low Isles is an excellent retreat for families and couples wanting a relaxing day away from the crowds, and offers wonderful off the beach Snorkelling as well as the feeling of being stranded on a tropical paradise. Picture scenes from the Tom Hanks blockbuster “Castaway” and you’re getting close. View sailing options to Low Isles here.
Check out a range of Great Barrier Reef Island Reviews prepared by our expert travel constulants