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How To Get To Fitzroy Island?

Updated Thu 29 Sep 2022

Which Boat Tours Go To Fitzroy Island?

Fitzroy Island is a continental island located 38 kilometres or 45 minutes by ferry from Cairns, Australia. Cairns is a city situated in Tropical Far North Queensland and known most famously as the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. If you’re looking for a land-based alternative to the Barrier Reef pontoon experience, and to see the underwater world of sprawling coral and unique marine life in a world heritage-listed site, you should book the next ferry to Fitzroy Island. The Fitzroy Island ferry is the most popular way to get to this stunning island just off of Cairns. If you’re seeking a thrill, arrive at Fitzroy on Thunderbolt. Thunderbolt is more than just a ferry, it's an adventure in itself! You'll cruise over the reefs below as you quickly make your way to the island at a whopping 80km/hour for a thrilling and wild ride. Or, if you have your own boat, why not charter yourself there and moor your vessel in Fitzroy Island Resort’s secure anchorage?

With an array of exciting tours and family-friendly options to deliver you to the exquisite Fitzroy Island, chat with our local travel agents to get you there seamlessly, your way!

Fitzroy Island Ferry in water

Where to catch the ferry to Fitzroy Island?

Pick up your Fitzroy island ticket from the Fitzroy Island Booking Centre at Shop 2/1 Spence St Cairns at least 30-minutes prior to departure to complete the check-in process. Catch your ferry to Fitzroy Island from Marlin Wharf Berth 20. Boarding commences 30 minutes prior to departure, so head there first to select the best seat.

two girls walking on the Marlin Marina

What times can I catch the Fitzroy Island ferry?

Ferries to Fitzroy Island usually leave Cairns at 8am, 8:30am 10am, 10:45am, 11am, 1:30pm and 4:30pm. Vessels in use are subject to change depending on what ferry you have booked. Please check your booking for the correct time. There are different departure times, for Half-Day and Full-Day Adventures.

Fitzroy island Ferry moving in water

What to do on Fitzroy Island?

There is so much to see, do and explore on Fitzroy Island. You can walk through the leafy rainforest, swim in the calm waters of Welcome Bay, see the stingrays swarm underneath the jetty or build sandcastles at Nudey Beach. Also, it is a great place for hiking with four walking tracks established on the island. Other popular activities you can do on Fitzroy Island are

Snorkel Safari

Experience the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef with a snorkel safari. With quality snorkels, masks, fins and lycra stinger suits available for hire, you can dive into fringing coral reefs and rub shoulders with tropical fish, friendly sea turtles and maybe even spot a giant clam!

Snorkel Safari on fitzroy island


Escape, unwind and sunbathe on the beaches of Fitzroy Island. Picture-perfect beaches lined with coconut trees. Step off the resort and lay on the beaches of Welcome Bay. Or for the scenic route, take a short 15 minute walk to Nudey Beach(this is not a nudist beach). Be sure to slap on some reef-safe sunscreen before laying under the sunshine. 

Three people sun bathing on nudey beach


Cruise the idyllic island water on a stand up paddleboard or a Kayak and enjoy an abundance of water activities on offer from Fitzroy Islands Sports Hub. Keep an eye out for friendly green sea turtles, they love to nest in this area.

aerial shot of lady paddleboarding in the ocean

Hike to the lighthouse

Head to the heart of the island and surround yourself with the gorgeous tropical rainforest and beaches of Fitzroy island. Enjoy the stunning views of the bush walking tracks. The full loop of the island is about 2.5 hours long and best enjoyed in the morning with plenty of water on hand. Once you reach the lighthouse summit, enjoy 360 breath taking panoramic views.

Three people with gear, hiking on the beach at fitzroy

Glass Bottom Boat Tour

Get up close and personal with the wonderful marine life, seen from the glass bottom boat. This tour is designed for the more relaxed explorer and is suitable for all ages. An educational interpretive talk is included, where you can learn more about the different types of fish and corals that surround Fitzroy Island.

Girl getting onto glass bottom boat

Visit the Turtle Rehabilitation Centre

See how the rehabilitation Centre on Fitzroy Island help sick and injures turtle. Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre on Fitzroy Island (CTRC) is a volunteer operated, non-profit organisation. The Great Barrier Reef is home to six of the world’s seven species of marine turtles. A number of these are seriously threatened by a diverse range of natural and, more significantly, human induced factors. Visit them on your time at Fitzroy, help a turtle out.

Turtle in the ocean

Stay on Fitzroy Island

With so much to do on the island, why not stay a night? Accommodations on site include; camping, bungalows and the luxurious resort! The resort has 99 rooms, a restaurant open for daily breakfast, Foxy's bar, a pool bar and a general store with wine and beer available to purchase and enjoy at the beach. 

Nudey beach aerial shot

Let the good times roll as natural marvels amaze you on your adventures in paradise through paradise! Look for other day trips during your stay in Cairns. Check out some of our other reef tours we have available!

Planning a visit to the picturesque Fitzroy Island during your Cairns getaway?
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