Welcome to Fitzroy Island

The Indigenous Gunggandji people hunted and fished from the island for centuries; in 1877, it was used to quarantine Chinese immigrants bound for the Palmer River goldfields. Today, Fitzroy is a national park, with a resort occupying but a small section on the western coast. It's popular as both a day trip from Cairns and as an overnight getaway from the mainland.

Top experiences in Fitzroy Island

Travel guides

Starting at $38.99

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Fitzroy Island activities

$61.05 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Fitzroy Island Day Trip from Cairns

Fitzroy Island is one of the most unspoiled islands on the Great Barrier Reef, located only 18.5 miles (30 km) from Cairns. The ocean and reef surrounding the island are protected as Marine National Park and are teeming with turtles, clown fish, hard and soft corals allowing a great snorkeling experience right off the beach.Your day begins with check-in at the Reef Fleet Terminal in Cairns from 8:15am for the Fitzroy Island high-speed ferry departing at 9am. Keep an eye out for dolphins and other marine life during the 45-minute crossing or simply relax inside the cabin. On Fitzroy Island, you can enjoy the day swimming and relaxing on the beach. If you like to explore on foot, the island features excellent hiking trails that wind through the rain forest and along the coast. The underwater world offers plenty of wonders as well, with multitudes of colorful fish and coral that can be spotted when snorkeling. Admire the rainbow colors of the parrotfish, watch clown fish darting in and out of anemones and see how many types of other marine critters you can spot in the wonderland of the Great Barrier Reef. Upgrade to the Activity Pass that includes a glass-bottom boat tour, snorkel gear, the use of stand-up paddle boards, paddle skis and a floating ocean trampoline. A delicious picnic lunch is also included as part of the Activity Pass. You may be able to check out water floats and other gear for children depending on availability, making this a family-friendly way to enjoy your island experience.

$107.52 Water Sports

Fitzroy Island Sea Kayaking

Catch the high-speed ferry from Cairns and arrive at Fitzroy Island in just 45 minutes. Walk to the activities hut located close to the ferry landing to meet your guide for your kayak tour. After introductions, receive safety instructions and your gear, which includes snorkeling equipment. With your gear in hand, it’s time to pair up with a friend and hit the water in double kayaks. Follow your guide through the warm turquoise waters and learn fascinating facts about the ecology, history and marine life of Fitzroy Island and the Great Barrier Reef. Paddle past pristine coastline and tempting beaches with lots of time to stop for snorkeling. Your guide can answer any questions about the colorful fish, coral and other natural features that you encounter in this slice of paradise. After about three hours of kayaking and snorkeling, return to the beach where you started. There you are provided with a tasty picnic lunch that you can take with you to enjoy during your free time in the afternoon. Lunch includes a chicken wrap, a ham and cheese roll, fresh fruit, an energy bar, juice or other beverage and bottled water. The vegetarian lunch option can be requested when you book.For the rest of the afternoon, enjoy free time to do as you please. You may want to walk to the lookout point for panoramic views, head to Nudey Beach for more snorkeling (you can keep your snorkel gear for the afternoon) or purchase a cold drink at the bar. At the designated time, catch the ferry to the mainland after a day in paradise on the Great Barrier Reef.

$290 Air, Helicopter & Balloon Tours

Cairns to Great Barrier Reef: 30-Minute Helicopter Flight Tour

When visiting Cairns, a flight over the world’s largest living coral system is a must. You’ll depart from Cairns airport for the Great Barrier Reef where you will gain a true appreciation of the largest natural wonder of the world. This flight includes views of beautiful Green Island and Fitzroy Island and on low tide, Vlasoff Sand Cay and Upolu Sand Cay. Sightings of manta rays, turtles and other marine life are not uncommon. If you’re flying with us in the winter months, there is even a chance of spotting whales! Be sure to bring your camera on this once-in-a-lifetime flight!

$162.37 Day Trips & Excursions

Fitzroy Island Stand Up Paddleboard and Snorkeling Day Trip from Cairns

Catch your boat from Cairns Marina at 7am for a 45-minute transfer. Upon arrival on Fitzroy Island, enjoy a 3-hour stand up paddleboard tour. If you've never been paddle boarding before- don't worry as you will be provided with a safety briefing, equipment familiarisation and theory session before you get started.Midway through your tour, jump off the paddle-board and enjoy snorkeling (route is dependent on the weather conditions on the day of travel). Take the opportunity to snorkel and learn about the reef and abundant sea life from your well informed professional guides.Return to shore on your paddle board and enjoy a complimentary snack. Take the rest of the afternoon as free time to explore the island, hike the summit, join a glass bottom boat trip (payable direct), or just kick back and relax on the beach.Return transfer back to Cairns departs Fitzroy Island at 3pm

$1875.55 Air, Helicopter & Balloon Tours

Cairs Helicopter Tour: Outback, Undara, Great Barrier Reef

Enjoy a complimentary pick up from your accommodation in Cairns and be transferred to Cairns Airport. Your expert pilot will provide a safety briefing before take off. Departing the airport your helicopter will track south of Cairns to Mt Bartle Frere and Mt Bellenden Ker, the highest mountains in Queensland, before heading west up the spectacular Johnston River Gorge. Enjoy the change in scenery from the coast and the lush tropical rainforest of the Great Dividing Range, to the orange and reds of the Queensland Outback as you arrive at the Undara Volcanic National Park. Take a guided tour of the Undara Lava Tubes - the longest single lava flow in the world. See extinct volcanic craters and the incredible lava tubes that wind their way through the National Park. Learn the history of the lava tubes, how they were formed and how long ago the volcanos were active. Enjoy lunch at Undara Central before jumping back in the helicopter and heading south. Fly over the stunning Blenco Falls and Wallaman Falls - the tallest single drop waterfall in the Southern Hemisphere. A truely spectacular sight from the air. Your pilot will then turn north for home, tracking up the coastline over the Great Barrier Reef and the rugged ridge lines of Hinchinbrook Island, Dunk Island, Frankland Island and Fitzroy Island. Once safely landed in Cairns you will be transferred back to you accommodation. During the tour your experienced pilot will be in constant communication, pointing out significant landmarks and provide expert commentary.

$2302.04 Multi-day & Extended Tours

13-Day Great Barrier Reef Marine Conservation Program from Cairns

Arrive in Cairns on day 1 and meet your guide that afternoon for your welcome briefing. The next 5 days are dedicated to your learn-to-dive adventure. If you are doing your Open Water course you will spend the next 2 days doing theory and pool after which you will head out on a 3-day/ 2-night live aboard trip to the Great Barrier Reef trip. Participants doing their Advanced Open Water, Nitrox or Rescue courses will join the Open Water students on the boat, and complete their respective courses while on the reef. After your diving trip enjoy a free day in Cairns. In the evening on day 7 you get to enjoy a Marine Biology presentation, which will prepare you for the conservation part of the trip. The next 4 days will be spent on the 25-metre high performance catamaran Passions of Paradise where you will undertake a number of underwater monitorings of various reef sites under the watchful eye of your eco-guide. Your task will be to complete underwater surveys as divers called Rapid Monitoring. All findings will be uploaded to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's database. The last day is a non-dive day. Participants travel to Fitzroy Island and volunteer at the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre. Get to know the patients, help out behind the scences and learn about how the hospital functions on a daily basis.