A Travel Price Comparison for Australia Torquay vs. Cairns for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Torquay or Cairns?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Torquay or Cairns, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Torquay

Located on the eastern end of the Great Ocean Road, Torquay is a seaside town of Victoria famous for its surfing and beaches. Surf town through and through, it is also the headquarters for the Quiksilver and Rip Curl surf gear companies, and home to the Rip Curl Easter Pro, the world's longest running surf contest held on Bells Beach.

Cairns

Most travelers go to Cairns specifically to visit Great Barrier Reef. The city itself is surprisingly large and cosmopolitan with a population of approximately 140,000. The city's economy is almost exclusively based on tourism, although you will find some jobs centered around agriculture, or more specifically sugar cane, bananas, coffee, tea, wine, and some tropical fruits. The city itself is surrounded by rainforest and makes a great base for exploring Kuranda, with the Barron Gorge National Park and the Daintree offering a quieter tropical getaway than Cairns.

Which city is cheaper, Cairns or Torquay?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Torquay is $80, while the average daily cost in Cairns is $87. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Torquay and Cairns in more detail.



Accommodation

The prices for places to stay in Torquay can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $36, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $72.

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $78 in Cairns For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Torquay $36
    Cairns $39
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Torquay $72
    Cairns $78

Food

The price of a meal in Torquay can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $23 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $9.20 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

Food in Cairns costs travelers about $26 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Torquay $23
    Cairns $26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cairns

For Cairns, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Spirit of Dinner Cruise: $77
  • Cairns Aquarium by Twilight with 3 Course Dinner: $99
  • Small-Group Afternoon Cairns City Tour with Harbour Dinner Cruise: $154

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Torquay than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $36 on transportation in Torquay on average per day.

Cairns's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $11 per person, per day on transportation in Cairns.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Torquay $36
    Cairns $11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cairns

Also for Cairns, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Cairns to Mission Beach Private Transfer: $303
  • Cairns to Port Douglas Private Transfer: $252
  • Premium Van, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Port Douglas.: $244
  • Luxury Van, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Port Douglas.: $171
  • Corporate Bus, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Palm Cove: $171
  • Premium, private bus transfer. Cairns City - Cairns Airport.: $135
  • Premium Van, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Palm Cove.: $125
  • Port Douglas Transfers between Cairns Airport & Port Douglas (Private Chauffeur): $118
  • Cairns Airport (CNS) Departure Transfer (Cairns Hotels to Cairns CNS Airport): $112
  • Premium Van, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Trinity Beach: $107
  • Premium Van, Private Transfer, Cairns City - Cairns Airport: $89
  • Luxury Van, Private Transfer, Cairns Airport - Palm Cove.: $89

Is it cheaper to fly into Torquay or Cairns?

Prices for flights to both Cairns and Torquay change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Entertainment

Sightseeing expenses in Torquay, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $10 per day, per person.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Cairns can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $34 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Torquay $10
    Cairns $34

Tours and Activities in Torquay

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Torquay.

  • 3 Day Private Tour Of Phillip Island, Great Ocean Road & Mornington Peninsula: $1,040
  • Cruise Ship Shore Excursion - Private Great Ocean Road Full Day Tour (12 Hour): $448
  • Great Ocean Road & 12 Apostles Tour: $83
  • Great Ocean Road Full Day Private Experience: $561
  • Great Ocean Road Sunset Private Experience: $561
  • Great Ocean Road Tour Plus Koalas, Forest Walk And Morning Tea.: $105
  • Private Express Experience - 12 Apostles: $445
  • Private Great Ocean Road Full Day Tour - 1 Day Tour: $421
  • Private One Day Great Ocean Road Tour: $377

Typical Entertainment prices in Cairns

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Cairns's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Scuba Diving
    $41

Tours and Activities in Cairns

For Cairns, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 1.5-Hour Segway Tour of Cairns and Botanic Gardens: $72
  • 14-Day Cape York Camping Tour: $2,350
  • 2 Day Liveaboard Yacht Great Barrier Reef Tour: $358
  • 2 Day Reef & Rainforest Adventure: $619
  • 2-Day Cape Tribulation and Daintree Rainforest Tour from Cairns /Port Douglas: $221
  • 2-Day Green Island Cruise and Kuranda Day Trip: $316
  • ATV Buggy Adventure & Rainforest experience Half-Day Tour: $102
  • Aboriginal Cultural Daintree Rainforest Tour from Cairns or Port Douglas: $210
  • Atherton Tablelands Waterfalls and Rainforest Day Tour Departing Cairns: $95
  • Barron Gorge and Kuranda National Park Half Day Rainforest and Waterfall 4WD Tour from Cairns: $124
  • Barron River Half-Day Rafting Tour from Cairns: $88
  • Best of the Kuranda Rainforest Full-Day Tour: $203

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Torquay, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $6.84.

Typically, people visiting Cairns spend on average $12 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Torquay $6.84
    Cairns $12

Sample the Local Flavors in Cairns

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Cairns:

  • Tablelands Food & Wine Tour: $233


When comparing the travel costs between Torquay and Cairns, we can see that Cairns is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Pacific, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Torquay vs. Cairns Travel Comparison

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