One of my husband’s oldest school friends got married over the weekend and the location of choice; Cairns. It was always going to be a destination wedding with the bride originally from Perth, the groom from Brisbane and the couple living together in Canberra. The weekend offered guests the chance to attend the wedding and enjoy the beautiful Cairns surroundings.
Having never been to Cairns, I found it reminded me of a collection of places – Townsville, rural New Zealand and Fiji all rolled into one! It definitely wasn’t the same as any one of those places but it had a certain sense of familiarity to me. There were also a few quirky places to visit, such as The Courthouse Hotel and the Cairns Casino.
Prior to becoming a hotel, The Courthouse was the only place in town for trials and other legal tribulations. In 1992, a new courthouse was built in a separate location of town, leaving the old courthouse deserted. It then wasn’t until 1998 that renovations began to preserve the hotel’s existing form and turn the premises into a hotel.
It is actually a bit of a treat to eat here, with the front area looking a bit like a German beer garden.
The Cairns Casino is also quite unique, as there is a high ropes course and wildlife centre at the top of the dome. It is described as ‘your zoo in the city’. To learn more about the Cairns Wildlife Dome, visit here.
Nearly all of our long weekend was spent in Cairns but we did manage to visit Port Douglas one evening. Port Douglas is roughly an one hour away from Cairns or one rotation of a Wiggles CD. It is also a fantastic hub for day trips to the reef and fine foods. It is also not without its quirks. This is the Ironbar we stumbled upon.