The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. The course is at Cairns Esplanade, Cairns. The course is run on a mixture of concrete paths and bitumen paths. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Cairns parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Runners wishing to run with a dog are welcome, but please keep the dog on a short lead or harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are also welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Cairns parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

Start/finish at parklands at the northern end of the Esplanade (corner Esplanade and Smith Street).
Loop 1: From the orange sculpture on the concrete path, run/walk south past the volleyball courts and two BBQ areas. Turn right just before Muddy's Café (look out for the "Watch out for crocodiles" sign). Cross over the entrance into the Skate park car park. Turn right at the tennis courts and run/walk on the shared bitumen path, past the finish area and over the entrance into the Fun Ship car park.

Out-and-back: Continue to run/walk north along the footpath to the traffic circle at Lake Street. Return the same way, but at the entrance to the Fun Ship car park, turn left.

Loop 2: Run/walk along the concrete path and you will go past the orange sculpture again. A few 100 metres south, turn right at the memorial row of trees. Turn right onto the bitumen path and run/walk to the finish.


Getting There

Location of start

The run starts at parklands at the northern end of the Esplanade (corner Esplanade and Smith Street).

Getting there by public transport

Northern end of Cairns Esplanade. The public transport service, Sunbus, operates throughout the city, running from the northern beaches to the southern suburbs via the CBD.
For information about zones, fares, tickets, ticket types, ticket prices and concessions, visit or phone 4057 7411.

Getting there on foot

Parklands at the corner of Esplanade and Smith Street, northern end of the Cairns Esplanade.

Getting there by road

Drive along Sheridan Street and turn into Smith Street. Meet at the corner of Smith Street and Esplanade at the northern end of the Cairns Esplanade.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in Muddy's Cafe, Muddy's Playground, 174 Esplanade, Cairns - please come and join us!