For scenic things to do in Cairns, you just can’t go past the Kuranda Scenic Railway in regards to visual beauty and a good old trip down memory lane. Hence it’s popularity as a top tourist Cairns attraction.
Operating since 1891, the Kuranda Scenic Railway boards initially from Cairns station, then slowly heads up into the beautiful mountains of Cairns, past the breathtaking Barron Falls and up to its final destination of the charming Kuranda village, which is one of my favourite places to visit in Cairns.
Along this stunning route, you can also get on or off at the Freshwater Connection, where you can enjoy a delicious meal inside beautiful antique carriages, visit some history at the railway museum and pioneer cottage, or even head into the gift shop for that special something to remember the day.
Some of the carriages are over 90 years old, so you are truly getting the authentic old world experience when you take the trip. Honestly, when you have a few things to do in Cairns, the experience on the rail will be one of the most relaxing you will experience. Also, knowing that most of the railway was built by hand (and not with modern tools and machines) is quite a wonder in these modern days.
Once you are in Kuranda, there is an abundance of activities and places to visit, so just be sure you keep track of time! The train leaves daily from Cairns Station, departing at 8.30 am and 9.30 am and departs Kuranda Station at 2.00 pm and 3.30 pm, giving you plenty of time to discover the wonderful village of Kuranda.
There are 3 classes to choose from in regards to price, each one with its own st of included features, ranging from the standard class (Heritage Class) to premium (Gold Class). The difference between Heritage and Gold is significant, however most of the time you will be looking out the windows, so for most, the Heritage Class should be sufficient. There is also the option to package the trip with Skyrail and the indigenous marvel that is the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park.
So if you’re looking for scenic Cairns attractions and are in the mood for a relaxing chilled out day, be sure to check out the Kuranda Scenic Railway. As a visual experience, you will be hard pressed to find another land tour that compares in both beauty and wonder.