Cairns Regional CouncilEconomic profile
Skip to content


Visitors and nights

In the 5 years up to 2017/18, there were an average of 775,774 international visitors to Cairns. Average length stay for international visitors was 6.1 days, lower than the average for Queensland.

Tourism is an important part of the economy. Tourism Research Australia (TRA) run annual visitor surveys to measure the size and composition of the tourism market in each area, and this data is presented here. Tourism may include overseas visitors in the country for a holiday, business or education, Australian visitors staying overnight, or local day trippers visiting the area. These different types of tourists will utilize different services within the economy, so understanding the different tourism markets is important for Local Government and businesses.

Tourism Research Australia – Survey data

International visitors
Cairns - 2010/11 to 2017/18CairnsQueenslandCairns as a % of Queensland
YearVisitorsVisitor nights % change from previous yearAverage length of stay (days) VisitorsVisitor nights% change from previous yearAverage length of stay (days)VisitorsVisitor nights
5 year average775,7744,721,510--6.14,021,03448,270,134--

Source: Tourism Research Australia , Unpublished data from the International Visitor Survey 2017/18.

Note: "--" represents unavailable data or data that has been suppressed due to a sample size of 40 or less. Suppressed figures are still used in the 5 year average calculations.

International visitors
International visitors 2017/18, Cairns: 820,166 people 2016/17, Cairns: 855,026 people 2015/16, Cairns: 824,382 people 2014/15, Cairns: 722,125 people 2013/14, Cairns: 657,169 people 2012/13, Cairns: 676,471 people 2011/12, Cairns: 591,231 people 2010/11, Cairns: 615,313 people
Source: Tourism Research Australia, Unpublished data from the International Visitor Survey 2017/18.