Beaches & foreshores

The Cairns region has some of the most beautiful coastline in Queensland, and our tropical beaches are a popular destination all year round.


Council provides lifeguard services on the beaches listed below.

All lifeguards and volunteer lifesavers are fully trained in first aid and in the treatment of stings from dangerous marine stingers, and have direct contact with emergency services.

For up-to-date information, contact North Queensland Surf Life Saving (during working hours) on 0429 501 380.  Swim safely and only swim at beaches patrolled by a lifeguard.

  • Ellis Beach
  • Palm Cove
  • Clifton Beach
  • Kewarra Beach
  • Trinity Beach
  • Yorkeys Knob
  • Holloways Beach
  • Bramston Beach

Stinger season

Stinger season generally runs from November to May. The stinger resistant swimming enclosures at local beaches give a high degree of protection against Box Jellyfish (but are not 100 percent 'stinger proof').

Beaches may be closed when stingers are present. Closures remain in place until weather patterns change and drive stingers away from the coastline. Always heed lifesavers' warnings and do not swim when beaches are closed.

You can reduce your exposure to potential stings by wearing protective clothing (wetsuit or full-body lycra suit) and enter the water slowly as stingers will often swim away, given the chance.

If you are stung at a beach without a lifeguard, get out of the water and apply liberal amounts of vinegar, which can be found on all main beaches. Monitor the patient's breathing and send for urgent medical attention.

Beaches status

For the current status at the beaches, view Surf Lifesaving Queensland's North Queensland Marine Stinger Season Update website.

Boat ramps and jetties

The Queensland Government provides a number of boating facilities such as boat ramps, pontoons and jetties within the Cairns Regional Council area. For a list of locations and facility types, including amenities, restrictions and site conditions, visit the Maritime Safety Queensland website and search "boating facilities".

Weddings and events

Our beaches are a popular place for weddings, receptions, photographs, parties and other gatherings. In most cases you need permission and the relevant permits - for instance if you are serving food or alcohol, putting up any kind of structure or setting off fireworks - from Council to use public land and facilities for your wedding or event.

Last updated: 04 October 2018