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You have three routes to travel from Macky to Cairns, but the route via A1 and bruce highway1 is better. It is a short route and has many opportunities to relax and have fun. It is a 733 km long route that may take 8 hours and 33 minutes by car.
Mackay to Cairns road trip (The Easy Way)
|8 hours 33 minutes
|12 hours 28 minutes
To cover this long route with ease but with a lot of entertainment, you should stop at a few beautiful places to relax. I recommend you stop at the following places while you are on the way to Cairns from Mackay.
Mackay to Bloomsbury
Driving Distance: 87 km
Driving Time: 1 hour by car
Top attractions in Bloomsbury
Some of the top attractions to visit in Bloomsbury includes the following:
Accommodation in Bloomsbury
For accommodation following are the affordable hotels with better services.
Restaurants in Bloomsbury
To have a tasty dining experience, I recommend you the following restaurants.
- bp Truckstop
- Sealand Takeaway & Cafe
- Proserpine Palace Chinese Restaurant
- The Point Tavern
Bloomsbury to Proserpine
Driving Distance: 38. 7 km
Driving Time: 26 minutes by car
The town is famous for its rural vibe. It is one of the major destinations to explore cattle grazing and sugar cane. You have many parks and beautiful natural tourist attractions that are worth seeing.
It is located on the edge of the beautiful tropical coast of Queensland, giving visitors a perfect view. People are hospitable, markets are arranged, and roads are well-paved. Many things are waiting for you in Prosperine; you must stop at Prosperine.
Top attractions in Proserpine
Prosperine has many beautiful attractions, but I recommend the following places you must visit when you are in Prosperine.
- Proserpine Historical Museum
- Honeyeater Lookout Trail
- Whitsunday Crocodile Safari
- Colour Me Crazy
Accommodation in Proserpine
For accommodation, you can visit the following hotels in Prosperine.
- Discovery Parks – Airlie Beach
- Prince of Wales Hotel
- Proserpine Motor Lodge
- A & A Motel
- The Grand Central Hotel Proserpine
Restaurants in Proserpine
During your stay in Prosperine, you can visit the following restaurants.
- Blaze Pizzas Whitsunday
- West End Cash Store
- Proserpine Palace Chinese Restaurant
- Hotel Metropole Proserpine
- Red Rooster
Proserpine to Bowen
Driving Distance: 67.4 km
Driving Time: 51 minutes by car/3 hours and 4 minutes by bus
Okay, you want some more fun? Just a 51 minutes drive from Proserpine, you have another place to stop: Bowen. It is the smallest town, almost 67 kilometres from Prosperine via Bruce Highway 1 route.
You can also go there by bus; it takes more than 3 hours which is not a better option than a car. Many things are in this small coastal town for you to explore. You have many places to visit in Bowen; even you can stay for 2 or 3 days if you have ample time.
There are many beaches to relax and have a romantic time. Explore the big reef and hikes in Bowen. The town has special importance in cultivating fruits in Australia, especially Mangoes. You have many other tourist attractions in Bowen to have fun and relax.
Top attractions in Bowen
Never miss visiting the following tourist attractions while you are in Bowen.
- The Big Mango
- Bowen Historical Society & Museum
- Euri Gold Farms
- Bowen Yoga Room
- Watertank Murals
Accommodation in Bowen
- Queens Beach Tourist Village
- Birch Motel Bowen
- Harbour Lights Caravan Park
- Queens Beach Hotel
- Birch Motel Bowen
Restaurants in Bowen
You can go to the following restaurants to have spicy dining.
- The Cove Restaurant
- LIP’S KITCHEN
- Fellows Fish Bar
- Grand View Hotel
- Bowen Noodle Bar
Bowen to Condon
Driving Distance: 206 km
Driving Time: 2 hours and 19 minutes by car/ Approximately 4 hours by bus
Condon is the next stop on your way to Cairns from Mackay to stay and explore beautiful attractions. It is almost 206 km from Bowen; it takes 2 hours and 19 minutes to get there by car.
Bus service is also available, but it takes almost 4 hours; you can use the bus if you are without a car or have ample time. Both follow the Bruce Highway A1/ A1 route.
Many things are waiting for you to visit in Condon. It is a suburban area but is rich with beautiful tourist attractions.
Top attractions in Condon
You can visit the following attraction for a picnic party or relaxation.
- ReefHQ Aquarium
- Castle Hill
- Magnetic Island Ferry Terminal
- Maritime Museum of Townsville
- Museum of Tropical Queensland
Accommodation in Condon
Following are the best hotels for accommodation in Condon if you are with the family.
- Hotel Grand Chancellor Townsville
- Clarion Hotel Townsville
- Cedar Lodge Motel
- Carlyle Gardens
Restaurants in Condon
If you feel hungry, the following are the restaurants for tasty meals.
- Carlyle Cafe Restaurant & Bar
- Irish Finnegans
- Hog’s Breath Cafe Cannon Park
- Cannon Park Dining & Entertainment
Condon to Ingham
Driving Distance: 108 km
Driving Time: 1 hour and 14 minutes by car/ 2 hours and 42 minutes by bus
The next stop on your route to Cairns from Mackay via the A1 route is Ingham. You can reach it in 1 hour and 14 minutes by car. If you take a bus, it will take almost 2 hours and 42 minutes to get there.
Ingham is a small town in Australia that is famous for the sugar industry and sugar mills in Australia. But many other things are there for tourists to explore besides the sugar industry.
You have opportunities to enjoy the world’s single-falling waterfalls, natural hill areas, green areas, and much more. The visitors can spend a few hours to enjoy among nature, plan a picnic, and have time to rest at this calm destination.
Top attractions in Ingham
If you are in Ingham, you must visit the top attractions to make your visit to Ingham memorable.
- Hinchinbrook Visitor Information Centre
- TYTO Wetlands
- Garbutt Park
- Ingham Golf Course
Accommodation in Ingham
No worries about the accommodation; you can go to the following hotels for affordable accommodation in Ingham.
- Lees Hotel
- Motel Ingham
- Ingham Tourist Park
- Ingham Herbert Valley Motel
Restaurants in Ingham
You can enjoy the versatile recipes in the following restaurants in Ingham.
- Mick’s Bread Kitchen
- Brick’s and Penny’s
- Hotel Hinchinbrook Restaurants
Ingham to Cardwell
Driving Distance: 53.7 Km
Driving Time: 37 minutes by car/Approximately 1 hour by bus
It is approximately 53.7 km from Ingham; it will take only 37 minutes by car and 1 hour by bus. You can go via any mode of transportation. Bruce HWY/A1 is the best route to get there.
Currently, it is the fastest route with traffic conditions. You have tropical rainforests and pools to spend a beautiful time among the lush green trees.
The visitors can enjoy the beaches and waterfalls. It is a perfect destination for a picnic.
Top attractions in Cardwell
Cardwell have many natural tourist attractions to explore, but the following are the must-visit attractions.
- Cardwell Forest Reserve
- Cardwell Forest Reserve 2
- Attie Creek Falls
- Cardwell Lookout
- Cardwell Park Rest Area
- Cardwell Jetty
Accommodation in Cardwell
For accommodation following are the best hotels in Cardwell.
- New Life Pastures
- Cardwell Van Park
- Cardwell Beachfront Motel
- Cardwell Beachcomber Motel Tourist Park Cardwell
- Cardwell Beachfront Motel
Restaurants in Cardwell
You have the following options to dine in Cardwell.
- Bearleys Bakery
- Seabreeze cafe longue
- Marine Hotel
- Terry and Mamiko’s
Cardwell to Tully
Driving Distance: 43.5 km
Driving Time: 30 minutes by car/45 minutes by bus
My next recommendation for a stop on your route to Cairns is Tully. It is almost 44 km from Cardwell via Bruce Hwy/A1. You can get there in only 30 minutes by car and 45 minutes by bus.
It is a small rural village famous as Australia’s wettest land. You can enjoy the best time among the tall Golden Gumboots in Tully. Green hilly areas have many natural attractions to rest, dine and have fun.
Tully suits everyone, from kids to seniors. Its best parks, Greenlands, hilly areas, sugar-producing mills, beautiful houses, and roads are amazing. Your time in Tully will be memorable.
Top attractions in Tully
You have many attractions to visit in Tully but never miss seeing the following attraction when in Tully.
- The Golden Gumboot
- Reinsdown Horse Riding
- Tully Cemetery
- Tully Aerodrome
- Tully Showgrounds
Accommodation in Tully
Visit the following places for easy and affordable accommodation in Tully.
- Tully Caravan Park
- Tully Motel
- Mount Tyson
Restaurants in Tully
You have many restaurants to dine at, but the following restaurants have special tastes, so you must visit there.
- Tully Hot Bread
- Tully Pies
- Ripe Harvest Cafe
- Tully Bakery
Tully to Innisfail
Driving Distance: 53.3 km
Driving Time: 40 minutes by car/ 1 hour and 18 minutes by bus
Next to the Tully, Innisfail is a beautiful tourist destination to stop at and have fun. It is about 40 minute car drive from Tully. To cover that 53.3 km distance bus takes 1 hour and 18 minutes via Bruce Hwy/A1.
Innisfail has a beautiful tourist attraction that is worth visiting. You have the museums to explore the art and history of Chinese Pioneer and local Australians. The waterfalls and beaches view is amazing. You can spend 4 to 5 hours on the beaches.
Never miss seeing the large banana gardens in Innisfail. It’s delicious, and sweat banana is famous around the world. Be careful when near the Waterways because crocodiles are very dangerous in Innisfail.
Top attractions in Innisfail
Among its beautiful attractions following the top attraction that you should visit.
- Sweeney Park
- Loth Park
- Warrina Lakes Botanical Garden
- Callender Park
- Dalry Maple Park
Accommodation in Innisfail
For accommodation, visit the below hotels; they offer the best facilities.
- Innisfail City Motel
- Goondi Hill Hotel
- Black Marlin Motel Innisfail
- Moondara Motel
Restaurants in Innisfail
There are the best restaurants to enjoy tasty meals in Innisfail.
- The Crown Hotel
- Hungry Jack’s Burger
- Domino’s Pizza Innisfail
- Timmsey’s Seafood
Innisfail to Gordonvale
Driving Distance: 64.7 km
Driving Time: 48 minutes by car/ 1 hour and 53 minutes by bus
After Innisfail at 64.7 km on Bruce Hwy/A1, Gordonvale is the best destination to stop and explore many natural tourist attractions. You can get there by crore bus, the car will take only 48 minutes, but the bus will take almost two hours.
Gordonvale is a clean and beautiful locality close to Cairns city that is rich with many natural attractions. You can explore the beautiful Aboriginal trees, beaches, hilly areas, and parks.
You can reserve a day to visit as many attractions as possible. The parks, museums, Greenlands, roads, mountains, and lush green trees all are amazing in Gordonvale.
Top attractions in Gordonvale
To have a beautiful time in Gordonvale, you can visit the following top attractions.
- Mulgrave River Environmental Reserves
- Greenpatch Camp Ground
- Mulgrave Settlers Museum
- Southside Paintball Club
- Norman Park
Accommodation in Gordonvale
You can enjoy the best accommodation facilities in the following hotels in Gordonvale.
- Pyramid Residential Care Centre
- Cairns Gateway Bed and Breakfast
- Thomas Street
Restaurants in Gordonvale
Following are the best restaurants to visit in Gordonvale.
- Parkview Hotel
- Piefection Bakery
- Kate & Time Pizzeria
- Coco Sushi
Gordonvale to Cairns
Driving Distance: 22.9 km
Driving Time: 24 minutes by car/ 54 minutes by bus
After Gordonevale, the next place is your final destination Cairns City. It is only a 42 minutes car drive from Gordonvale; if you take the bus, it may take an hour via Bruce Hwy/A1.
Cairns has many tourist attractions to explore, but it is famous as a Gateway to reefs because of its tropical rainforests. You have hundreds of places to have a good time in Cairns.
You must stay a minimum of two days to explore more and more things in Cairns. Its parks, beaches, tall green trees, and paved green-covered roads are amazing. Cairns is a safe city for tourists; by all means, it has hotels, restaurants, easy transportation, and better security.
Top attractions in Cairns
During your stay in Cairns, you must visit the following attractions for more fun.
- Woodwood Park
- Cairns Skating Centre
- Cairns Botanic Gardens
- Glacier Rock
- Clohesy River Fig Tree
- Shady Waters Camping
- Davis CK Mountain Bike Park
- Moody Creek Park
Accommodation in Cairns
Following are the best hotels to stay in Cairns.
- Bohemia Resort Cairns
- Cairns City Backpackers Hostel
- Shangri-La The Marina, Cairns
- Pacific Hotel Cairns
- Crystalbrook Riley
Restaurants in Cairns.
Below is the list of ideal restaurants to visit in Cairns for tasty meals.
- Crystal Garden Restaurants
- Jade Chinese
- Samgasat Thai Cuisine
- Rosario’s Pizza, Pasta & Ribs
- The Red Pepper Wood Fired Pizzeria
How should I travel from Mackay to Cairns without a car?
What is the best month during the year to visit Cairns?
Cairns is a moderate destination you can visit any time during the year. But June to August is the best time to get to Cairns. The temperature during these months remains between 16 to 26 degrees. The weather remains dry and clear you can enjoy sailing and boating.
How many days do you reserve for a visit to Cairns?
What to be careful of in Cairns?
Cairns is a famous tourist destination, but you must be careful when visiting the rainforest. There are thousands of wildlife species, most of which are not dangerous, but you have to care for marine stingers, crocodiles, cassowary, spiders, and snakes.
What is the most convenient and cheap way to get from Mackay to Cairns?
Car is the best and cheapest way to travel from Macky to Cairns. It takes almost 8 hours and costs you up to 90$ for fuel. You can also stop at different places as much as time you want.
A road trip to Cairns from Mackay via Bruce Highway has many opportunities to have fun, dine, relax and explore natural attractions. While planning, you must plan a week’s trip and must spend two to three days between Mackay and Cairns. It will be a memorable journey for you.