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About Cairns 

From marine science to tropical medicine, Cairns offers specialised fields of study that harness the region's unique environment.

This friendly, regional Queensland location is internationally renowned as a vibrant, multicultural education city. It has a growing reputation as a global hub for academic excellence in tropical health & medicine, agriculture, marine science, aviation, tourism, hospitality, engineering, creative arts, research and more. 

Cairns offers quality education, cultural diversity, affordable living and an active lifestyle in one of the most unique destinations in Australia.

Two students conducting research in the lush Daintree Rainforest  

Daintree Rainforest

A snapshot of Cairns

Education providers

James Cook University, CQ University Australia, TAFE Queensland and The Great Barrier Reef Marine College


Over 156,000

Iconic environment

The region of Cairns is home to the Great Barrier Reef and Wet Tropics World Heritage Rainforest 

A dive instructor leads introductory divers to a giant clam

Upolu Cays National Park. Image courtesy of Tourism and Events Queensland.

The cost of living in Cairns is generally lower than in other major Australian cities. It also has a thriving tourism industry, which provides many job opportunities for you while you study.  

Cairns may be a small city, but it has all the conveniences of a major city with world-class restaurants, bars, shops and cultural events. It also has an international airport with non-stop flights to many Asian countries.

When you’re out of the classroom, there’s so much to do! You can learn to scuba dive, snorkel beautiful reefs, have a barbeque on the beach with friends, visit ancient rainforests and swim in waterfalls.

Visit the Study Queensland website to find out more about studying in Cairns.

Queensland information and support

1800QSTUDY is Queensland’s international student hotline providing phone support and information related to studying in Queensland. The hotline is available 24/7 and free when you call from an Australian landline or mobile provider so you will always have access to support when you are studying in Queensland.

More study locations in Queensland