Cairns Travel Guide
Quicksilver floating pontoon at Agincourt Reef
As the weather begins to turn a bit colder and a bit gloomier in the US, we're already seeking out a winter "light at the end of the tunnel." While doing some wanderlust brainstorming, along with a wide variety of flight searches, we recently came upon the option of escaping the blustery Northern Hemisphere for a littleor a lotof sunny, summery Southern Hemisphere.
What screams Middle-of-January escape more than a diving trip to some of the most beautiful coral reefs on the planet? We knew that would get your attention. Celebrating its 30th anniversary as being named a World Heritage Site, the Great Barrier Reef lies just off the coast of Northern Queensland in Australia. Don't worry, this is no where near the floods from last year and, we mean, it's more than 600 miles away.
Qantas / V Australia / Airlines / Airfare Sales / → All Tags
As we get closer and closer to the launch date for V Australia's virgin flight from the U.S. to Sydney, it's no surprise that flying kangaroo Qantas is coming out with some extra-special deals. And we're loving it.
This month's deal is not bad at all: Qantas is offering a free stopover if you fly from Los Angeles, San Francisco or New York and end up in the northern Queensland town of Cairns, gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. For your stopover you can choose from Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne, and even Auckland in New Zealand. Given that distances are truly vast Down Under, this is a great way to see two completely different parts of the country.
Airfares with the free stopover start from $898 (plus taxes) from the west coast which makes it comparable to V Australia's. The fares are valid for May through September (if you book by February 27) which might not seem the best time to visit Australia--remember, they're going through their summer heat wave right now--but if you're going to tropical Cairns, then you'll hit the dry season which is a great time to visit.