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What to Eat in Great Barrier Reef

Most visitors head to Cairns when they want to explore the reef, so it's hardly surprising that one of Queensland's most diverse dining scenes can be found here. Popular eateries include the French-inspired C'est Bon Restaurant Français, the Indonesian-focused Bayleaf Balinese Restaurant and Tha Fish Restaurant, where local seafood staples like fish and chips, seared tiger prawns and grilled Moreton Bay bugs (small lobsters) are on the menu. Travelers can also enjoy an array of local brews at Cairns' Barrier Reef Brewing Co.

For those who plan to linger farther south in Townsville, Australian restaurants like A Touch of Salt, JAM and IMC Steak House are available. Aussie dishes served throughout the city include grilled barramundi (a type of seabass native to Australia) and roasted lamb, and craft brews can be savored at Townsville Brewing Co. A few specialty restaurants, such as Chico Rio (a Brazilian dining venue) and GYO Japanese Tapas Bar Restaurant, are located in Townsville as well.

Travelers visiting the Whitsundays will find the bulk of the islands' eateries on Hamilton Island. Because of its proximity to the water, Hamilton Island offers a variety of seafood-focused restaurants, including Bommie (which is part of the Hamilton Island Yacht Club) and Mariners Restaurant (located within the Hamilton Island Marina complex). Australian pub grub and Asian and Italian fare are also available.

Find the Best Restaurants in Great Barrier Reef

  • #1
    Mi Piace Espresso Bar
    #1 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 117 reviewsTripadvisor (117)
    $ - $$ | Cafe, Australian
    119 Sheridan Street Opposite Munro Martin Park, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #2
    Snoogies
    #2 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 229 reviewsTripadvisor (229)
    $ | Cafe, Australian
    82 Grafton St Between Lake and Grafton streets, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #3
    Cruze Coffee
    #3 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 408 reviewsTripadvisor (408)
    $ | Cafe
    105 Grafton St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #4
    Cairns Burger Cafe
    #4 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 539 reviewsTripadvisor (539)
    $ - $$ | American, Fast Food, Australian
    15 Aplin St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #5
    Trinity Beach Kebab House
    #5 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 124 reviewsTripadvisor (124)
    $ | Fast Food, Middle Eastern
    1 Rabaul St, Trinity Beach, Cairns, Queensland 4879 Australia
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  • #6
    Devine Gelato
    #6 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 955 reviewsTripadvisor (955)
    $ |
    Shop 3 5 Aplin St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #7
    Gelocchio
    #7 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 723 reviewsTripadvisor (723)
    $ | Italian
    9/93 The Esplanade (50 metres up Aplin street From Esplanade-Aplin corner, walk up Aplin, 50 metres on the left., Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #8
    Vitalia's Italian Restaurant
    #8 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 337 reviewsTripadvisor (337)
    $ - $$ | Italian, Pizza, Mediterranean, Romana, Lazio, Sicilian, Sardinian, Central-Italian, Southern-Italian
    Shop G9 2 Pierpoint Rd, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #9
    Waffle On Cairns
    #9 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 5 based on 369 reviewsTripadvisor (369)
    $ | Cafe, Australian
    64A Shields St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #10
    Fusion Art, Bar & Tapas
    #10 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 447 reviewsTripadvisor (447)
    $ - $$ | Contemporary, Fusion, Australian, Wine Bar
    12 Spence St Shop 5, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #11
    Marinades Indian Cuisine Cairns
    #11 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 560 reviewsTripadvisor (560)
    $ - $$ | Indian
    43 Spence St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #12
    Tha Fish
    #12 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1461 reviewsTripadvisor (1461)
    $ - $$ | Seafood, Contemporary, Australian
    Shop g7b Pier Pt Rd, Pier Shopping, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #13
    Dundee's at the Cairns Aquarium
    #13 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 347 reviewsTripadvisor (347)
    $ - $$ | Australian
    5 Florence St Cairns Aquarium, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #14
    Apex Milk Bar
    #14 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 290 reviewsTripadvisor (290)
    $ | Fast Food, Diner, Australian, Street Food
    24 Hoare St Manunda, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #15
    Bang and Grind
    #15 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 684 reviewsTripadvisor (684)
    $ | Cafe, Australian
    Shop 8 14 Spence St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #16
    Blackbird Laneway
    #16 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 240 reviewsTripadvisor (240)
    $ | Cafe, Australian
    67 Grafton St Oceana Walk Shop 13, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
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  • #17
    C'est Bon Restaurant Francais
    #17 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1022 reviewsTripadvisor (1022)
    $$ | French, European, Gastropub
    20 Lake St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #18
    JaffleHead
    #18 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 270 reviewsTripadvisor (270)
    $ | Fast Food, Cafe, Australian
    39 Lake St, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #19
    Piato
    #19 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 411 reviewsTripadvisor (411)
    $ - $$ | Seafood, International, Mediterranean, European, Greek
    1 Pierpoint Road Shop G4A, The Pier Marina, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »
  • #20
    Tamarind
    #20 of 590 Places to Eat in Cairns
    Tripadvisor Traveler Rating 4.5 based on 1014 reviewsTripadvisor (1014)
    $$ | Contemporary, Fusion
    35/41 Wharf Street, Cairns, Queensland 4870 Australia
    Read More »

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