There are 4 ways to get from Cairns to Mackay by plane, train, bus or car

Select an option below to see step-by-step directions and to compare ticket prices and travel times in Rome2rio's travel planner.

Recommended option

Fly  •  5 h 32 min

  1. Fly from Cairns (CNS) to Mackay (MKY) CNS - MKY

$190 - $572

Cheapest option

Bus  •  12 h 35 min

  1. Take the bus from Cairns Central Station to Mackay Gx411

$65 - $120

2 alternative options

Train  •  11 h 6 min

  1. Take the train from Cairns Central Station to Mackay Spirit of Queensland

$85 - $120

Drive  •  9 h 32 min

  1. Drive from Cairns to Mackay 459.9 miles

$65 - $95

Questions & Answers

Yes, there is a direct bus departing from Cairns Central Station station and arriving at Mackay. Services depart once daily. The journey takes approximately 12 h 35 min.

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Yes, there is a direct train departing from Cairns Central Station station and arriving at Mackay. Services depart three times a day. The journey takes approximately 11 h 6 min.

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The distance between Cairns and Mackay is 591 km. The road distance is 735.8 km.

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The best way to get from Cairns to Mackay without a car is to train which takes 11 h 6 min and costs .

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It takes approximately 5 h 32 min to get from Cairns to Mackay, including transfers.

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Cairns to Mackay bus services, operated by Premier Motor Service, arrive at Cairns Central Station.

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Cairns to Mackay train services, operated by Queensland Rail Travel, arrive at Cairns Central Station.

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The best way to get from Cairns to Mackay is to fly which takes 5 h 32 min and costs . Alternatively, you can train, which costs and takes 11 h 6 min, you could also bus, which costs and takes 12 h 35 min.

Mode details

There is no direct flight from Cairns Airport to Mackay Airport. The quickest flight takes 3 h 10 min and has one stopover.

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Cairns to Mackay bus services, operated by Premier Motor Service, arrive at Mackay station.

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Map of how to get from Cairns to Mackay.
Launch map view
  • Distance: 369.2 miles
  • Duration: 5 h 32 min

What companies run services between Cairns, QLD, Australia and Mackay, QLD, Australia?

Qantas, Virgin Australia and two other airlines fly from Cairns to Mackay every 2 hours. Alternatively, Queensland Rail Travel operates a train from Cairns to Mackay 3 times a day. Tickets cost $85 - $120 and the journey takes 11 h 6 min.

Airlines
Qantas
Website
qantas.com
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Townsville
Ave. Duration
4 h 27 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday
Estimated price
$170 - $700
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Brisbane
Ave. Duration
5 h 47 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$180 - $800
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Brisbane, Rockhampton
Ave. Duration
6 h 15 min
When
Monday, Wednesday and Friday
Estimated price
$170 - $700
Virgin Australia
Website
virginaustralia.com
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Brisbane
Ave. Duration
5 h 33 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$190 - $850
Jetstar
Website
jetstar.com
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Townsville
Ave. Duration
3 h 10 min
When
Monday and Friday
Estimated price
$170 - $700
Flights from Cairns to Mackay via Brisbane
Ave. Duration
6 h 55 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$210 - $1,000
Train operators
Queensland Rail Travel
Phone
1300 131 722
Email
reservations@qr.com.au
Website
queenslandrailtravel.com.au
Train from Cairns Central Station to Mackay
Ave. Duration
11 h 6 min
Frequency
3 times a day
Estimated price
$85 - $120
Book at
Queensland Rail Travel
Bus operators
Premier Motor Service
Website
premierms.com.au
Bus from Cairns Central Station to Mackay
Ave. Duration
12 h 35 min
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$75 - $110
Schedules at
premierms.com.au
Greyhound Australia

Greyhound Australia is the country’s only long distance bus operator running services in all states and territories. Greyhound Australia has been operating for 110 years and is the leading bus company in Australia. The extensive network now covers most of the Australian mainland and services more than 5 million passengers every year. Buses are equipped for the long journeys, with free WiFi, air-conditioning, full disability access, USB chargers in every seat and an on-board restroom.

Contact Details
Phone
1300 473946
Website
greyhound.com.au
Bus from Cairns to Mackay
Ave. Duration
12 h 55 min
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$65 - $120
Book at
Greyhound.com.au
Saver
$65 - $95
Flexifare
$80 - $120

Want to know more about travelling around Australia

Rome2rio's Travel Guide series provide vital information for the global traveller. Filled with useful and timely travel information, the guides answer all the hard questions - such as 'How do I buy a ticket?', 'Should I book online before I travel? ', 'How much should I expect to pay?', 'Do the trains and buses have Wifi?' - to help you get the most out of your next trip.

More Questions & Answers

Cairns to Mackay train services, operated by Queensland Rail Travel, arrive at Mackay station.

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Yes, the driving distance between Cairns to Mackay is 736 km. It takes approximately 9 h 32 min to drive from Cairns to Mackay.

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Jetstar, Virgin Australia and Qantas offer flights from Cairns Airport to Mackay Airport.

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There are 76+ hotels available in Mackay. Prices start at $62 USD per night.

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The best way to get from Cairns to Cairns Airport is to shuttle which takes 15 min and costs .

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