The best food trails around Cairns and Port Douglas

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Oh, how I love the wisdom of Virginia Wolf. She had my life mapped out when she wrote,

One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.

Personally, I can’t do anything even moderately well if my taste buds are not fired up for adventure. So when it comes to a holiday in Cairns and Tropical North Queensland, I like to put a little Wolfism into my getaway and feel that ‘one simply cannot do the Great Barrier Reef well or the rainforest well, without dining well’.

Luckily this entire region – and I’m talking the 320km that runs from Cape Tribulation in the north to Mission Beach in the south – is literally a crock pot of trails for foodies, full of astoundingly good restaurants, fresh-from-the-farm produce and days of mooching between normal holiday adventures.

Cairns and Port Douglas food trails map |

If you have just 24 hours, then apart from shorting yourself of one of the greatest destinations in the world, you really have to hotfoot it around. Stick to our 24 Hours of Eating in Cairns itinerary to sample local produce straight from the markets, daily roast coffee and a local’s preferred beachside noshery. Or just loll by the hotel pool and save your energy for our 10 of the Best Restaurants in Cairns.

Foodies with two more days to spare should consider our 48 hours of grazing on the Atherton Tablelands itinerary to see overfed dairy cows, cheery little chickens, coffee plantations and lakeside cafes that offer scones with lashings of double clotted local cream. Beware, this is not a place for weight watchers! You might just have to run up the range to run off those calories.

Port Douglas has never been a secret for serious foodies so we’ve dosed up the days and come up with 3 days of feasting in Port Douglas covering everything from rainforest to beachside and inlet dining. Remember to bring your smartphone and the perfect pout. This place is a haunt for the Hollywood crowd and you never know which A-lister you might end up dining next to.

So with that mapped out, the only thing left is to wish you “bon appetit … mate!”

Have you ticked off any of these food experiences?

  • Rocky Travel Blog

    I toured the Atherton Tablelands and Cape Tribulation last year on road trip and I loved every minute! Definitely something to add to the travel itinerary when visiting Cairns.