Cairns Esplanade is a public open space that includes the constructed lagoon as well as lots of water play areas for
kids along the foreshore. The lagoon is about the size of an Olympic swimming pool, but is triangular in shape
with a gentle slope from one end of the pool to the other. The maximum depth is around 1.6 metres. The water
in the pool is salty and crocodile-free.
Above: Cairns Esplanade Lagoon
(Source: By Photnart
- Own work
CC BY-SA 3.0
There is a huge variety of people who visit the lagoon, ranging from local families to backpackers to the local rugby team who I saw
finishing off their training with some hydrotherapy. From the water you have a view out over the Coral Sea that is only interrupted by the pairs
of legs passing by at eye level along the foreshore promenade. The cool water is a welcome relief in the tropics where the beach is out of bounds
due to crocs, stingers and mudflats.
On any given day or evening there will usually be some sort of activity happening along the Esplanade including fitness activities,
concerts and a weekly market.
Other Information Before You Go:
Cairns Esplanade, Cairns, between Shields and Aplin Streets
Head east by foot from the Cairns town centre or north along the Esplanade
from the ferry terminals
Public toilets, change rooms, bbqs, picnic tables. Numerous restaurants and cafes across the road
Maximum water depth:
Minimum swimming proficiency required:
Prohibitions including whether you can bring your dog:
No dogs or glass permitted
Shade available out of the water under some trees and shade cloth
Always open, but only patrolled by lifeguards from 6am-10pm Oct-Mar and 7am-9pm Apr-Sep.
Closed for cleaning Weds 6am-midday
Wheelchair accessible paths around the lagoon
There is no camping at the Cairns Esplanade Lagoon. If you want to stay overnight
near the lagoon, you can try the following options, all within a short stroll from the lagoon. All distances below are by foot.
Cairns Regional Council
The Great Barrier Reef
Before you head out, make sure to read the
swimming safety information
and check with the managing authority for any current change of conditions.
The marker indicates the approximate location of the lagoon.
If you would like to leave a comment about this swimming spot, please fill in the comment box below.
I am particularly interested in your experiences after visiting, and any changes in conditions, etc.
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