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Cruises from Cairns: Deals and top picks for 2020-2021

A detailed guide to cruises departing from Cairns, their itineraries and the places they sail to.

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Are you planning a cruising holiday? Ships from Cairns can take you to Cape York, Malaysia or the Pacific Islands to explore pristine beaches and tropical wonders.

With the Australian 2018/19 cruising season gaining momentum, this may be the perfect time to book a cruise for your next relaxing vacation.

Cruise itineraries from Cairns come with a wide range of destinations, duration and fares. In this easy guide, we've laid out useful information about cruises from Cairns to help you make an informed choice.

Places you can cruise to from Cairns

Cruises leaving from Cairns sail around Australia and New Zealand, as well as the Pacific Islands, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, and South-East Asian destinations such as Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.

Cruise durations range from three-day trips to Willis Island to three-week trips covering Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Philippines and Malaysia.

Which cruise lines sail out of Cairns?

Cruises from Cairns to Papua New Guinea

Embark on a cruise from Cairns to explore the unspoiled natural beauty and diverse culture of Papua New Guinea.

Due to its proximity to North Queensland, a wide range of cruise itineraries depart from Cairns. Almost every itinerary is available as a round trip or continues further to another destination.

Cruise duration ranges from a 4-day round trip to Alotau to a 17-day circumnavigation around the whole island before reaching Darwin.

Cruise lines that offer sailings from Cairns to Papua New Guinea:

Our picks: Top cruises from Cairns to Papua New Guinea

Cruises from Cairns to Darwin

Discover the tropical north of Australia with cruises from Cairns to Darwin. Itineraries range from 11-25 days.

Cruises of shorter duration leave from Cairns and stop at a few places in North Queensland and the Northern Territory, or Papua New Guinea. Longer cruises circle around Papua New Guinea or sail to Malaysia, calling in at the Philippines, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

Cruise lines that offer sailings from Cairns to Darwin:

  • Azamara Club Cruises
  • Coral Expeditions
  • Silversea

Our picks: Top cruises from Cairns to Darwin

Cruises from Cairns to Cape York

Sail to the northernmost point of the Australian mainland on a luxurious cruise to Cape York from Cairns.

Cape York is a stopover for cruises from Cairns sailing to the Philippines and Darwin.

The journey lasts from three to five days depending on the number of stops en route. Some itineraries to Cape York include stopovers in Lizard Island, Stanley Island and Forbes Island.

Cruise lines that offer sailings from Cairns to Cape York:

  • Coral Expeditions

Cruises from Cairns to Vanuatu

Vanuatu is renowned for luxurious resorts with access to sea, sun and sand along with picturesque tropical islands. Cruises to Vanuatu take your luxurious and relaxing holiday to a whole new level.

However there's no available sailing for this year.

Cruises from Cairns to Brisbane, Fiji, New Zealand, Whitsundays

Cruises from Cairns generally don't sail to Brisbane, New Zealand and the Whitsundays though do depart from other major Australian ports such as Brisbane or Sydney.

Where do cruises depart from Cairns?

Cruises from Cairns leave from Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal in the Port of Cairns. The cruise terminal is within easy reach from Cairns Airport. The Line 121 bus from the airport takes 15-minutes and drops you half a kilometre from the terminal.

Cairns airport transfers

If you want to be dropped right at the terminal, you can take a taxi, shuttle or Uber and reach the port within 10 minutes. You can pre-book one of the following shared shuttle services from Cairns Airport to the port, which also stops at several hotels in Cairns CBD. Shared transfers start from $15 and can be booked straight away through Viator

Cairns cruise ship deals


Up to $400 OBC worldwide cruises

Expires 31 Aug 2022
Available on select cruises from 2022–2023 on destinations including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Alaska, Europe and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to 45% off Australia and New Zealand cruises

Available on select dates in 2022–2023 with Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America Line and more. Sample rate is for a 3-night cruise with Carnival Cruises.

Up to $100 OBC + 50% off deposits on cruises

Verified Today Expires 4 Jul 2022
Available on select travel dates from 2022 – 2024. Destinations include Hobart, Moreton Island, Sydney, Noumea, Cairns, Port Douglas and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to 35% off worldwide cruises with Norwegian Cruises

Expires 30 Jun 2022
Available on select cruise dates from 2022 – 2024 for the first and second guest. Destinations include Alaska, Bahamas, Portugal, Croatia, Australia and more.

Up to $200 OBC on Australia cruises

Expires 30 Jun 2022
Available on select sail dates from 2022–2024. Destinations include Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Newcastle, Kangaroo Island, Adelaide and more.

Up to $500 Visa card credit + free drinks with Celebrity Cruises

Expires 30 Jun 2022
Available on select voyages from 2022–2023. Destinations include Vanuatu, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Australia and more.

3+ nights last-minute cruises from US$89

Available on select travel dates with Royal Caribbean, MSC Cruises, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and more. Sample rate is for a 3-night Bahamas cruise with Carnival Cruises. Destinations include Australia, Japan, Vietnam, Italy, Alaska and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to 71% off holiday cruises

Available on select cruises in 2022–2024 with Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruises, MSC cruises and more. Destinations include Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Singapore, Caribbean, Bahamas and more.

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