Category: Australia

Things to Do in Cairns (That You Might Not Know About!)

Ah, Cairns. My beautiful home! I love living in such a stunning part of the world. Although we locals often take Cairns for granted there’s really nowhere else like it! We’ve got the countryside for camping on long weekends, we’ve got the Great Barrier Reef for island days in summer, and we’ve got the city centre for food and entertainment in between – we’re a lucky bunch. These are a few of my favourite things to do in Cairns that you might not know about!

See a show at Paramour Cabaret Theatre
Now this might be a little biased as I’m actually a performer at Paramour, but I swear it’s more than worth going to! It is the only permanent cabaret in Cairns and all of the performers are local! Paramour creates and performs unique cabaret variety shows often including singers, dancers, drag queens, burlesque dancers, aerial artists, and more! They also host comedy nights and improv nights, they have a tapas menu available, and a fully stocked bar. It’s a great choice for an 18+ night on the town!

Paramour Cabaret Theatre is located underneath the Cairns Reef Hotel Casino.


Camping at the Mareeba Drive-in

Going to the Mareeba Drive-in is my all-time favourite thing to do, hands down. If I could go every single weekend I would! I found my love of it after Ethan and I decided to go together for date night two years ago. We piled pillows and blankets into the back of my car so we could lay down and we ran my car battery dry using the car radio for sound. We had to get the car jumpstarted to get home, but it didn’t put a dampener on our experience! We loved it so much that we kept going and going and going and now we go every time we have a free Friday or Saturday night! We’ve since moved on to a double camping swag and bluetooth radio though, so you can tell we take it seriously.

If you’re visiting Cairns – or you’re a local and haven’t been! – we highly recommend going to the drive-in. I tell anyone who will listen all about it. It’s a family owned and operated business, it’s on every Friday and Saturday night, it’s $14 entry, and you get to watch two new release films back to back with a short break in between. You can camp for free on movie nights too! They also have an amaaaaazing canteen with super delicious food. We never spend more than $60 total when we go – talk about a cheap but awesome date night! The Mareeba Drive-in is located in Mareeba (of course) which is roughly a one hour drive from Cairns city.

Catch some professional wrestling at a Pro Wrestling Power show
You read that right! Professional WWE style wrestling is alive and well here in Cairns! The team at Pro Wrestling Power put on a show once a month for their fans and let me tell you… It. Is. Wild.

I had never seen wrestling before going to a PWP show and now I love it! I get so caught up in all the different storylines and the display of athleticism from the wrestlers is incredible! My personal favourite is E10! (Yes, he may be my boyfriend, but he’s also just genuinely phenomenal at what he does! He’s a real crowd pleaser.)


Enjoy a hike up to the Glacier Rock Lookout
I’ve actually written a pretty comprehensive post about this hike, so definitely check that out if you’re thinking about giving it a go! I would highly recommend it. It’s easily one of the best hikes in Cairns for a beginner to see a beautiful view.

Alternatively, if this hike is to long for your liking, the Red Arrow track on Mt Whitfield or the Earl Hill track out at Trinity Beach are also great options!


Visit Fitzroy Island
Out of everything I’ve listed, this is probably the most typical! However, in saying that, when I speak to people who are visiting Cairns they often tell me that they’re going to Green Island. Green Island is beautiful, but my personal favourite is Fitzroy Island. It’s less likely that a tourist will go to Fitzroy because they just don’t seem to be told about it – at least not in the same capacity that they’re told about Green Island! Do yourself a favour and see the beauty of Fitzroy Island for yourself. You won’t regret it.

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Let me know if you do (or have done!) any of the things on these list in the comments!

Katie

Adventures in Far North Queensland: Glacier Rock Lookout Hike

I’m a pretty big fan of walking up giant mountains and I am not afraid to admit that it’s at least 85% because of the view at the top. Yes, I definitely enjoy the physical aspect. Of course, I am most certainly crazy about the influx of outdoors ensued endorphins. Absolutely, I love getting amongst nature in one of the most beautiful rainforest filled parts of the world. And obviously, working up a sweat under the tropical sun is awesome. BUT that view!? That view is good enough to surpass all those things.

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Glacier Rock is a three hour round hike suitable for reasonably fit people of all ages. When I say ‘reasonably fit’ I really do just mean reasonably. It is not the most difficult hike I have ever done and there are plenty of options for stops along the way. As long as you can walk at a normal pace you should be fine to do Glacier Rock!

The hike starts at the Stoney Creek carpark, so type that straight into Google Maps and make your way to the carpark. Cross the bridge above Stoney Creek and start your journey through the rainforest. From there it’s all straightforward and simple – just make sure you keep going until you get to the top! Some people stop about an hour in because they think that’s all it is. If it’s not the view in these photos, keep going up!

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The hike is a very well established network of Aboriginal walking tracks boasting a great deal of history. The Djabugandgi Bama walked these tracks for trade, seasonal food gathering and to visit ceremonial sites. In the period of early European contact – around the late 1800s – the network of walking tracks was adapted by gold miners, cattle drovers and railway workers to cater for pack horses which is what inevitably turned it into what we see today when we walk the track.

The first time I walked the track I took my mum with me. We made it up and back in 3.5 hours, but that time included a half hour stop at the top for some refuelling (snacks, lots of snacks). We are not crazy fit nor do we do long distance hikes often, but we made it there and back with relative ease.

The second time I took my friend, Kate, with me. Again the actual walking part took three hours. The third time Kate and I invited another friend, Rhianne. Once more, three hour walking time. So I am very confident to say that three hours is what you can expect if you are planning to take your time and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

Here are my top tips for the Glacier Rock Lookout Hike:

  1. Bring lots of water and plenty of healthy snacks. I would recommend a litre of water per person, especially in the Summer months. Cairns is a very hot and humid place and the sun is no joke – trust me on this one, water is essential. We usually take a backpack and take turns carrying it. Snacks like sandwiches and fruit always make us feel much better when we get to the top and it’s also nice to enjoy the view with a little picnic.
  2. Go early in the morning – that’s when it is the coolest here in Cairns. The middle of the day is the hottest, so try to avoid the main part of the uphill walk between 11am and 1pm. The view is also much clearer in general in the early hours of the morning.
  3. Bring swimmers! Stoney Creek is a beautiful and safe swimming hole with fresh water for cooling off. It’s also a quiet swimming hole, so most days you may get a whole area to yourself! Be sure to keep an eye on children though as there are a lot of rocks.
  4. Stop when you need to stop – this hike is stunning and there is SO much to see. I am confident that you will want to stop and look around as much as possible, so do that! There’s nothing like Far North Queensland.
  5. This IS a nature hike so please be mindful of the things that can be surrounding you while out and about in Australian nature. Always be aware and don’t venture off the very clearly marked path. Be cautious!
  6. If it has been raining or it is raining, I would recommend rescheduling your hike to the Glacier Rock Lookout until it is dry. This can be a steep hike in some parts and as it is all dirt it can get very slippery and dangerous in wet weather. Again, be cautious!
  7. Most importantly – take some kind of camera! You won’t want to miss this shot! Your friends will be reeling with jealousy when they see the amazing things you got to see and do in Cairns.

I’d love to see your photos and hear about your Glacier Rock experience – leave me a comment down below!

Katie

Sydney’s Night Noodle Markets

This evening I went to the Night Noodle Markets for the first time this year with my cousin and her family. The markets run from October 8th to October 25th and it is my absolute favourite event on the Sydney yearly calendar – you can bet I’ll be visiting over and over again!

The Night Noodle Market is the biggest event run during Sydney’s Good Food Month. With over 40 stalls, a selection of bars, and nightly entertainment, the market is perfect for foodies of all ages! Sydney’s iconic Hyde Park is transformed into a spectacle with the colour, sights and smells of an Asian hawker-style market, and the buzz and hype of a huge outdoor festival. The market has been running for 17 years and is more popular than ever!

I personally recommend finding the $3 pork buns, ‘Chips on a Stick’ (there are heaps of flavours, I tried both the chicken salt and cheese flavours and they were incredible!), and the spring rolls and fried wontons at the stall I just can’t remember the name of! I even made a mental note because they were my favourite (and so cheap!) but now I can’t remember for the life of me! I’m sorry, I know that’s not very helpful – I will update after I visit the markets next!

I didn’t have any of the desserts tonight – I was so full from all of the savoury food! I plan to go back one night soon and just devote the evening to desserts (it’s a hard life!). I absolutely love this event and we only get it for a couple of weeks a year so I plan to make the most of it!