Out and about in Cairns…again

There is absolutely nothing good about a 3am alarm – that is, of course, unless the 3am alarm is so that you can be up to drive to Brisbane for a 6.30am flight. Yes, you heard me right, a flight. We were off to Cairns for a long weekend and given that travel is allowed within our state and Cairns is in Queensland and, albeit 1500km from where we live, travel is on the cards.

Where once hopping on a plane was something that happened at least once a month, these days it’s a privilege – and I found myself taking photos of everything #asyoudo.

It’s also a privilege to be able to see more of this amazing state that we live in, so here’s Cairns…again. Oh. if you want more about Cairns and Tropical North Queensland, check out this post.

Rusty’s Markets

This is a Cairns institution and, if you’re a foodie, a must-do. They sell everything here – herbs, veggies, so many different kinds of tropical fruits, and who knew there were that many kinds of bananas.

Most fruits I’d heard of, but some, like black sapote (see below) I hadn’t. It’s also known as chocolate fruit and when we were in the Daintree we tried some ice cream made from it – and yes, it tasted of chocolate.

It amazed me also how many leaves were being sold as herbs – sweet potato leaves, choko leaves. (Side note, if you’re in the US you probably know choko as chayote or vegetable pear or mango squash.)

There are also plenty of food trucks to get snacks or meals from – everything from vegetarian Indian to different types of coffee to Samoan, Thai, Chinese, German hotdogs and plenty in between.

We grabbed a snack (vegetable samosa) as it had been hours since we left home, but didn’t want to take the edge off our appetite for lunch on Prawn Star.

Prawn Star

I told you about this place last time. It’s a series of three fishing boats that have been converted into a restaurant with a limited menu and it works amazingly well.

Again we went with the jumbo platter and again it was fabulous.

Cairns Waterfront

And no walk along the Cairns waterfront is complete without checking out the super yachts… #howtheotherhalflive

Cairns Art Gallery

While Grant napped the afternoon away (he blamed the early morning) I took the opportunity to duck over the road and look at pictures.

This gallery is a real gem – and a lovely cool spot when it’s hot and humid outside.

I loved the modern reimagining of cultural crafts.

Where we stayed

We were up there via a Luxury Escapes package – 3 nights accommodation at the newly reopened Oaks Cairns. The package included daily breakfast and nightly drinks up on the rooftop bar, plus credit towards food up there. All for $449.

The rooms were lovely and super quiet – with the air-conditioning efficient and one of the quietest I’ve experienced. This was good as, strangely for Cairns, this hotel doesn’t have a pool. It’s so unusual for Cairns that it hadn’t occurred to me to check. The lagoon pool (which you can see in the pic above) is across the road, but roadworks were going on which meant that to get over there involved a bit of a magical mystery tour. Grant rarely swims so he didn’t miss it, I, however, did.

That aside the brekky was great – and I’m borrowing their smashed avo with fried eggplant for my new book.

We also enjoyed the platters we ordered with our evening drinks.

One of the things we enjoy about Cairns is the street food options – there are some great Vietnamese and Thai places where you can grab a table on the pavement and a couple of beers and watch the world go by. This trip, because we’d indulged in platters as our starters (and had lunch out on both Friday and Sunday), we opted for cheap and cheerful in the evenings.

Next time: I’ll take you for a drive to the Daintree Rainforest and all the way up to Cape Tribulation…

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

4 thoughts

  1. Hi, Jo – This post made me sooooo nostalgic for cheap and cheerful (and utterly delicious) street food.
    It also caused me to ask Google how many different types of bananas exist. Over 1000 varieties! Seriously, who knew??!!

  2. Hi Jo – I always love all your pictures – it makes me wonder how much you see with your eyes and how much is thru your lens. I take half a dozen pics when I’m on holidays and they always have a person in them – I think I’m still stuck in the 24 photo reel days of olde!

  3. Jo, when you love a place, visiting never gets old. That is what Miami is to me. I see a few similarities with Cairns, but Miami could definitely take a page from the playbook with those converted fishing boats and the street food vendors. This post is so full of everything that makes me happy – getting on an airplane, great food, museums, awesome weather, great photos; now that’s what I call JOY! Thanks for sharing.

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