Tropic Weekender: Our guide to the best events and things to do in Cairns

Margaritas, beachside tunes, markets and more live music than you can keep up with ... we're looking forward to this weekend! 

There's also two great theatre productions on, next to some comedy and a Japanese film festival. 

The weather could be a little wet and stormy on Saturday, but clearing up on Sunday. 


Friday 12 November

Tequila-based cocktails, tacos and tostadas sound like an ideal Friday night in our books. The Chambers is tonight throwing La Mexicana, a pop-up street food and margarita night. Five courses plus appetisers, $75pp. Bookings essential.

Shakespeare’s Othello, featuring renowned Far North actor Jimi Bani and untold stories of the Torres Strait’s integral role WW2, premieres at Bulmba-ja this weekend. The Queensland Theatre production is running matinee and evening performances across Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $34pp. 

Local jazz master JC Stylles is bringing The Mike Price Quartet at the Cairns Colonial Club, featuring tenor saxophonist Andrew Butt, Tommy See Poy on organ and Joe Vizzone on drums. 7pm start, tickets $30pp. 

If you’re a big fan of bands like AC/DC, Rose Tattoo, Led Zeppelin, head down to the Tanks tonight for The Brazilians, supported by Swamp Donkey. 7.30pm start, tickets from $20.

Rondo Theatre is hosting Things I Know To Be True – a story of love, family and growing up, featuring war veteran Brett Neale. Playing at 8pm on both Friday and Saturday night, as well as several shows next week. Tickets are $31.50pp.  

Saturday 13 November

Mareeba Markets are on again, packed with around 180 stalls selling all things local produce and handcrafts. 7.30am to 12.30pm.

It’s Makin’ Whoopee Christmas Market time, woohoo! With more than 30 local makers and creators, there’ll be plenty of gifts and treats to choose from. 9am to 2pm, Croswell Hall at Cairns State High School.

Munro Martin is home to free live Music in the Park this Saturday, bringing together Black Image Band, Naomi Wenitong, SeeBreez, and the Warrigan Band. The CIAF art market opens at 4pm, ahead of the concert’s 5pm start.

The Tanks is tonight hosting R.3.B, supported by Miss V and the Cold Water Band, as part of its big local line-up. Show starts at 7pm, tickets from $20.

Some stand-up comedy and quality food can be found at Wild Thyme this weekend, with Jacques Barret in the house. Paired with a two-course dinner for $60pp, the show starts at 7.30pm.

Sunday 14 November 

The Japanese Film Festival Satellite is in town, featuring two free films – a kaleidoscopic anime about two boys raised by dugongs, and a heartfelt family drama with an Okinawan setting! 10am and 1pm, Cairns Central Cinema.

Surely one of the tropical north’s most laidback locations, Ellis Beach Bar & Grill, is hosting local singer Big Pups for a lazy Sunday arvo session. Plus, $1 oysters!