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There’s No Place Like It On Earth.

Cairns is the heart of Tropical North Queensland. It’s fringed by reef, enveloped by rainforest and ringed by the Savannah - it is like nothing else you’ve ever experienced. We love it here and know you will too.

Why Cairns

Why Cairns

Cairns is an amazingly vibrant town, with all the benefits of a big city squished into a easily negotiated tropical paradise nestled between the reef and the rainforest. The lifestyle is laid back and the locals are easily accommodating and friendly. Cairns is a great place to study. Weekends spent on a pontoon feeding clown fish, or lazily spend an afternoon reading a book under a palm tree on the Esplanade.  Perfectly positioned between the rainforest and the reef, it’s no wonder Cairns is the world’s most liveable tropical city.

Every year, thousands of students choose to study in Cairns whether it is for a few days on a study tour program or at any one of our colleges or Universities for a Internationally recognised qualification. Cairns offers a broad range of industry leading programs within a diverse cultural environment.

Regardless of your career choice, Cairns has your course covered! And regardless of what course you are studying, MiHaven Student Living has every accommodation option available for students living in Cairns.

Places of interest

  • Esplanade + Lagoon
  • Cairns Library
  • Port Douglas
  • Northern Beaches Precinct – Explore seven unique beaches!
  • Rusty’s Fresh Produce Market
  • Cairns Museum
  • Cairns Regional Gallery
  • Flecker Botanic Gardens
  • Sugarworld Waterslide Park
  • The Reef Hotel Casino

Cairns is truly an oversized resort town, with the freedom and safety to explore at your leisure. MiHaven Student Living are excited to offer an activities program for all of the Residents who are living in the student accommodation in Cairns.

Discover Cairns

Discover Cairns

Cairns is truly the gateway to Far North Queensland and the bounty of attractions it has to offer. As one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, Cairns has plenty of wonderful sights to see and activities to do. From the outback to the reef, to the rainforest to the city centre, Cairns has something for everyone. The area is home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World – the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef – and to the world’s oldest rainforest, the Daintree Rainforest.

Things to do

  • Drop in to the Great Barrier Reef for snorkelling and diving
  • Scout around the Daintree Rainforest, look for the elusive cassowary
  • Relax on unspoiled, sandy beaches and islands
  • Locate the seven beaches within cooee of Cairns
  • Go shopping at large shopping centres OR
  • Explore the hidden city lanes for small boutique shops!
  • Eat in fabulous international restaurants, or find the closest street food van
  • Party in nightclubs or discover the intimate gin and whiskey bars tucked away in hidden alleys
  • Sit back in the airconditioned Cinemas and theatres
  • Be active on the Golf courses, tennis and basketball courts and soccer fields
  • Saddle Up a horse and go on an expedition
  • Be Brave: White water rafting, Bungee Jumping, Sky Diving
  • Soar on a Hot air balloon
  • Spend your pennies at the local handmade markets

Transport options in Cairns

Cairns is easy to get around. Transport providers around Cairns are easy to navigate, and have safe and modern facilities:


MiHaven Student Living is less than 1km away from Tafe North, and the nearest bus stop to take you either into the city or the major shopping centres, Cairns Central, DFO or Stockland Earlville.


MiHaven Student Living is less than 4 minutes drive from CQU Cairns Campus, 6 minutes drive to JCU Cairns Campus, 4 minutes to the Cairns Base Hospital and less than 10 minutes drive to all of the other campuses and educational institutions. Cairns City is easy to navigate and parking can be found easily.

Excellent sealed highways link Cairns with the national road network. All tourist attractions are easily found, and closer than most people think.

International & Domestic Airport

Cairns Airport  There are daily flights to and from most key international and Australian destinations.

Taxis and shuttle bus services are available to and from the City Centre, and only a ten minute drive.


Linking the City Centre and almost every Cairns suburb. Student Discounts are available, and this service is quite regular and very safe. Drivers are friendly and will be able to assist with payments and directions.


Connecting Cairns to Queensland’s Capital, Brisbane (1729 km to the South) and beyond on modern trains with both sleeper and seat options. The Kuranda Scenic Railway is also a very popular way to visit Kuranda, a quaint marketplace village at the top of the range right behind Cairns.

Taxis & Uber

Black and White Taxis – 24-hour taxi service.

Taxi meeting points or ‘ranks’ are in the central city areas and at shopping centres.

Uber is also a new and popular option for ridesharing within the city limits – not available for onger rides to tourist attractions such as Port Douglas or the Daintree.

Cruise Liner Terminal

Far North Queensland’s busiest cruise port with over 150 international & domestic cruise ship visits a year. A wonderful splurge for a weekend away is the short cruises on last minute sales departing directly from Cairns. Don’t forget to tell the MiHaven Student Living Guru if you are going to be away for the weekend!

Car Rentals

Local and International Car Rentals companies are located throughout the city centre, airport and at some of the northern beaches.

Bicycle hire

The compact, easy city layout with wide pedestrian and bicycle pathways makes it convenient for cycling around the city. MiTribe discount cards have negotiated a great rate for our residents. Ask the MiHaven Student Living Guru for more information


There are several daily bus services linking the major cities and towns around Australia. McCafferty’s, Greyhound and Oz Experience offer student rates for our residents.



In April 2018, Cairns will host the Commonwealth games preliminary basketball rounds, much to the excitement of locals and tourists alike. This kind of event does not go without fanfare, and a 12 days Festival 2018 will accompany the games.  The program consists of artist displays, international singing acts, parades and breath-taking theatre pieces. This will be the highlight of the Cairns Events Calendar and will be spoken about for years to come.

Cairns is a delightful mix of cultures and ethnic background, and therefore the locals have embraced a complete diversity of events on the social calendar. Most weekends are jam-packed with colourful markets and vibrant parades. The perfect weather conditions make Cairns the perfect destination for enjoying your weekends to the fullest.

Due to the high number of Chinese visitors and expats, the Chinese New Year is embraced and celebrated through a week-long festival, culminating in dragon dancing and feasts – Oh! The food! Dumpling anyone?

Fancy a little bit of sport and fitness? Cairns is home to the Asia- Pacific Ironman Championship in June every year. Bringing sports men and women from around the world to compete in this International event, it is a great weekend for spectating and celebrating wins! Get a good position on the esplanade and cheer your home country in, or head out to trinity beach early to see the swimming leg.

When a challenge is set, it is hard to back down. The Great Pyramid race is another local sporting event to book in you calendar. Super-fit humans travel far and wide to run up and down a very steep hill. The Pyramid is a great photo opportunity in itself – but being part of the race is a pretty awesome thing to put on your bucket list.

Nearly every weekend in Cairns there is a local market, a great opportunity to see local arts and crafts that has a tropical feel and is not found anywhere else in the world. In particular, the Tanks markets is held on the last weekend of the month, nestled amongst the greenery of the botanical gardens, and kept cool under the shade of the rainforest trees. Great handmade gifts and trinkets, as well as local food and beverage artisans to keep you sustained as you meander through the stalls. Don’t miss this!

A Safe Tropical City

A Safe Tropical City

Being one of the northern most cities in Australia, the dangers in and around Cairns are usually associated with nature rather than crime! Locals will tell you to be smart and you will be safe, just like any Australian city. A few tips to get you through –  Walking alone at night has an element of risk involved – regardless of where you are. Pick a buddy or get a taxi. A night out on the town requires a wingman to keep an eye on each other, and your drinks.

Ubers and Taxis are quite safe, with cameras installed in most modes of transport. When going out for a morning jog, keep to well populated areas, rather than back roads and concealed footpaths. If you have an injury whilst exercising, you will have more immediate help. A great place to test your fitness is the Red, Blue and Yellow Arrow at Edge Hill. Mornings and afternoons are extremely popular with locals wanting a natural gym alternative.

Listen to your mother – don’t talk to strangers…. Offering you free lifts in cars! If you are looking to hitchhike cross country or across town, go through a reputable rideshare app or Gumtree. Get to know your co-driver in a public space before jumping in the car with them. Trust your gut and do some research. There will always be another lift around the corner if this one does not feel right.

Crazy Creepy Creatures of Cairns

So Cairns is quite a safe place. Unless you want to do something fun – like swim in a creek or the ocean! Keep an eye out for signs and you should be ok.

  • Crocodiles – harmful and dangerous, they will kill you so keep an eye on the signs and take a dip in the Esplanade Lagoon.
  • Snakes and Spiders – keep well clear, and do not be a nature warrior by picking these critters up. They will eventually find a new home, or we can call a professional to move them on.
  • Sharks – even though the Great Barrier Reef forms a natural barricade for larger biteys, we often do have smaller fish close to the coast and in creeks that will take a nibble.
  • Mozzies and the smaller critters – there are many products sold at the supermarkets that can deter a bit from the mozzies.

Unsure of anything?

Not ready to secure a room just yet? Send us your question and we’ll answer all your queries.

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© 2019 MiHaven Student Living