The Cultured Foodie

Cairns Food Itinerary

A lot of your holidays involve discovering the best Cairns food on offer -  bakeries, the best restaurants, and finding exciting new foods to try!

Food is at the heart of many cultures, and it makes up an important part of your holiday experience.

Remember to Share Your Results On Social Media, and check out the articles below for more inspiration!

Cairns Food Japanese Ramen

How To Use This Itinerary

Remember to bookmark this page so you can refer back to it at any time. As you move through the itinerary, use these top tips to help you get the best Cairns experience out of your time in Cairns and Far North Queensland

Choose The Best Day

Top Tips For An Unforgettable Holiday

  • Choose the best weather day (least wind) for your 'Reef Day'
  • Try to group 'self-drive' days together if you are hiring a car.
  • Consider the length of tours and how your energy levels are going to feel after each day. Will you need a break?

Book Ahead

Avoid Disappointment and Book Ahead

There's nothing worse than missing out! Many tours, car rentals and restaurants book out quickly, especially during busy times in Cairns. Don't leave it to chance, book in advance! 

We have included links throughout this guide to provide you with our top recommendations. 

Travelling with Children?

It Doesn't Need To Be Hard!

As a mum, I get that the way we travel is often different when we are travelling with children.  Because of this, I've added a section below each 'day' on the itinerary with my top recommendations when travelling with children under 12 years old. Keep an eye out for the logo above for 'Family Friendly' tips

Considering hiring a car during your stay in Cairns?... Save Money and Don't Miss Out! Since COVID, there has been a shortage of hire cars in the region. Many visitors have missed out or paid much higher rates as a result of not planning ahead. To secure a car at the best price, I recommend searching through Drive Now (use the search boxes below). You'll find prices and availability for a wide range of providers including Hertz, Thrifty, Avis, East Coast Car Rentals and more, all in one place. 

hertz europcar thrifty budget avis east coast car rentals

Day 1: A Taste Of The Tablelands

The nutrient rich lands in Far North Queensland result in a wide variety of delicious fresh foods for you to try. This boutique, small personalised tour is chock-full of delicacies and hidden gems... 

Over 7 stops throughout the day, you'll enjoy everything from coffee to local gins, liqueurs and spirits, local nuts and dried tropical fruits, local dairy products and Australian Game (crocodile, yabby, kangaroo, smoked mackarel).

You'll also have the pleasure of enjoying teas grown locally in the region, and exotic jams and preserves made from native fruits such as the Davidson Plum. 

Pack your appetite! This is one heck of a day!

Top Tip For Families:

The guided tour above not suitable for children under 18 years old. As an alternative, hire a car (my recommendation is below), and grab a copy of the self-drive guide - Atherton Tablelands Foodie Favourites!

While there are some destinations that are included in the tour that you are not able to visit as part of a self-drive, below is a guide to the best foodie hot-spots that you can visit at your own pace. 

Day 2: A Taste of the Ocean

Only operating on Sundays, you'll gain exclusive after-hours entry to the Cairns Aquarium, where you'll enjoy a guided tour through the aquarium from an ecologist. 

Enjoy an appetizer and drink as your guide walks you through over hundreds of millions of years, and how this has led us to the flora and fauna we see in Far North Queensland today. 

You're evening isn't over yet though... Now it's time to dive into a 3-Course Meal at Dundee's Aquarium Restaurant, where you will enjoy a memorable dining experience beside an enormous aquarium, watching fish and sharks swim by. 

This is a unique Cairns food experience you're going to love! 

Top Tip For Families: This tour is suitable for children, and is an activity that they truly love! Pricing is adjusted for the kids! 

The Cairns Aquarium is very new, and was meticulously designed to explore the aquatic and reptilian wildlife throughout the region. It's a huge favourite with the kids and it's bound to keep then engaged and learning, before enjoying dinner. 

Day 3: A Taste Of Hops & Botanics

While the last day has been all about Cairns food, this bar hop, making its way through 5 different micro breweries and distilleries and a local bar.  You'll have the opportunity to taste their beers, hear the stories of the brewers and make new friends in the progress. 

Start your tour with lunch included in the tour, then you can look forward to spending your afternoon discovering a few amazing beers and local gins which are sure to impress! 

Group sizes are limited, so make sure you book in advance. 

Family Friendly Alternative

Okay... If traveling with children, a microbrewery and distillery tour may not be the best option for you.

Why not spend the morning at Rusty's Markets (open Friday, Saturday and Sundays) where over a hundred stalls filled with local produce are on display and ripe for the picking. You'll get the opportunity to pick up an entire assortment of tropical fruits and vegetables, and/or grab lunch from one of the many 'street food' stalls. 

Learn more about Rusty's Markets in my blog using the link below

Hungry? Check These Out...

Looking For More Inspiration?

Check out some of my most recent blog posts! 

About Me...

Hey there! I'm Kate!

I moved to Cairns, Far North Queensland in 2014 for a sea change, leaving my medical profession as a pharmacist behind, in favour of celebrating this beautiful region full time while working in the tourism industry. 

It was a pivotal point in my life, and has lead me to many opportunities and experiences that I am endlessly grateful for. 

This blog, and the resources I put together are created to help others discover the same beauty I found in this region and to create lasting memories for you too! 

Kate Mannion


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