What is living in Cairns like?

I am trying to plan a few months stay in Cairns, QLD with my friend for our summer. It's going to be winter over there and I was wondering what exactly the winters are like. Also, we are students wanting to experience the lifestyle, work, and have a good time. Any other advice is welcomed 🙂

(Best places to live, best jobs to get, Australians view of Americans...anything!)

7 Answers

  • Hi mate, I'm a Cairns girl born and bred and lived here all my life. Winter here is my absolute favourite time of year. July/August/September temps range from 17 - 30 degrees (that's 62 - 86 for you) and usually the weather is divine. Crisp blue skies, not too humid and very little rainfall. It's also our peak tourist time so if you're planning on staying in hotel style accommodation it could be a bit pricey. Here's a couple of sites that will give you an idea of what else is available - http://www.share-accommodation.net/Cairns-accommad... or here - http://backpackertours.com.au/accommodation/frames... Jobs wise, well that all depends on what kind of skills you have. Like I said, it's peak tourist season so you can do the rounds of the hotels in town, they're usually looking for a few extra room attendants that time of year and working during the day leaves your nights free for FUN! Talk to some of the tour operators when you get here, you might be able to score a job on one of the dive boats and then 'hey presto' free trips to the Great Barrier Reef! For the most part, we're a pretty cruisey bunch. If you can have a laugh at yourself and not get offended if someone has a joke at your expense then you'll fit right in. Somebody already mentioned that most Aussies think G.W is a wanker so you could cop a bit of flak about that but don't take any notice. All in all you'll have a blast and cairns will welcome you with open arms 🙂 If you take my advice about the room attendants jobs you might even end up walking into the hotel I work in! Small bloody world mate, small bloody world 🙂

    By the way, I love Live_For_Today's little dig at Townsville up there lol. You'll soon learn that all Cairnsvillians HATE Townsville with a passion. Also that was good advice about the beaches (which you absolutley can swim at. During the stinger season which is from around November to May you will need to swim inside the stinger enclosures at the beaches or wear a stinger suit) and sunscreen. The sun here can be vicious and you WILL burn after about 15 minutes unless you're careful.

    I hope this has been helful, anythinhg else you want to ask feel free to email me.

  • Living In Cairns

  • Winters are usually warm however it can get coldish some years. However it is not called winter, it is called the dry season so no problem with humidity. Peak tourism period for Australians escaping th cold down south.

    Cairns is a great place to base yourself if staying for several months. The area itself has more visually appealing small towns but you can travel to these on weekends as they have fewer work opportunities and fewer nightlife options. eg Port Douglas, Mission beach etc.

    The area has so many adventure/nature experiences you will wish you stayed longer. Just a sample

    Great Barrier Reef


    AJ Hackett

    Kuranda Skyrail/train

    Atherton Tableland - hiking/waterfalls, platypus spotting, crater lakes, massive figs, tropcal fruit wine tasting.

    Paronella Park

    Mission Beach/Dunk Island.

    Cooktown/ Cape York - elim beach. Quinkan Rock Art gallery etc.

    4wd drive - Mt lewis, Bloomfield track.

    White water rafting (though not so much water, dry season)

    Undara Lava Tubes.

    Chillagoe, start of outback, rich in geology, ancient land based reefs and hundreds of caves.

    Work opportunities.

    Fruit picking

    Sugar cane

    Tourism - waitstaff, casino, hotel staff

    Boat crew if experienced - fishing, GBR tours

    Hospital staff

    Also there is wwoof where you buy a book that gives you contact list of farmers. It it does say organic farming but wwoofers can end up doing all sorts of jobs around a farm or large property like cooking meals, painting, admin work etc etc. The idea is you work a few hours a day for room and food.

    Then there is volunteer conservation work that sometimes includes accommodation and or food. Usually just bunkhouse or tent though, nothing fancy but can be a good experience. details available for US students. Not always available though when you want it...but perhaps worth a try.




    Either way student travellers do usually get paid at lower end of scale and wwoofers do not get paid or a small stipend only so to enjoy the area to the fullest you should have some other funds available.

    Cairns has a large tourism industry and also quite a few American ex-pats live here so Americans are well accepted. There are some anti-American australians though they normally have personal issues so just ignore them if by small chance you encounter one lol.

  • Cairns in winter time is soooo nice and the best advice I can give you.........is swim at patrolled beaches and swim between the flags where the life savers are watching, as sooo many foreigners don't know our beaches and under currents, therefore a few of them drown or go missing. Have a great time and don't forget the sun screen lotion. As for Townsville !!!! don't waste your time as there is not much to see and do there and not as pretty as Cairns.

  • Winter is warm and lovely, shorts and t-shirt weather, just a little humid. It's the perfect time to go there. The lifestyle is very casual and laid-back - you'll have a fantastic time. There are quite a lot of tourists having fun, but it's not crowded.

    The main industries there are tourism and sugar cane farming. Don't plan it too much, that's part of the fun!

  • Okay, well I am Australian.

    Cairns in winter is nothing like america (parts of america!). Its around its between 19 and 13 degrees mostly.

    I think the only veiw we would have against you would be the iraq bombing, which isnt really americans, its George Bush.

    I'm not acctually from Cairns but if you want a nice place to be in Queensland its port douglas.

    Good Luck with your trip, if you want any more help just email me, I will be happy to help you (I am from QLD). My email is [email protected]

  • Dont live there but it is very humid all year round as is in the tropics.They do not have beaches that you can swim at as they have problems with I think its blue bottles that sting.I believe that they are building artificial beaches with netting but not sure about that. A better option is to go a little further South say Townsville it is a little milder and even further south to the Gold Coast.This is a large tourist area and I dont think you will find any problem getting casual work there.Most Aussies have no problem with Americans, as we tend to be as loud as you are in general. Check before you come if you are allowed to work here.Winter weather in Queensland varies from 15C Gold Coast to 28C Townsville (you can convert to F as I dont know ) nights are cool and days pleasantly warm the futher up the coast you go the hotter it is.Perhaps someone from Cairns will post to you as I live in Sydney and have only holidayed there.Have a nice stay.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts