I stay at the International for 6 months (worked there as receptionist). Best job ever!
Stayed in various rooms throughout my stay - there's large 10,6,4 bed dorms to double, twin, single rooms. The dorms are shared (both female and male) but you can request an all female/male form if you wish. There's also balcony dorms which have views over the lagoon (huge swimming pool) beside the sea and infront of the hostel. Bathrooms are shared - sperate female and male. Take your own towel, soap, shampoo etc. It is a hostel your staying and not a hotel - hence the price. Hostel is cleaned very regularly. There's also a TV room - huge tv and pool table with balcony overlooking sea and lagoon. Also there's a roof terrace with sun lounges - nice and quiet up there as not too many people know about it. Fantastic veiws of the boats coming in and out of the docks.
The reception is open from 6.30am to 10.30pm. Tour desk from 9am to 10.30pm. (uyou get good deals with the tour desk if your staying in the hostel) There is also an Asian helpdesk. There's PC's with internet are open same time as reception. Though it works out cheaper to go to Global Gossip. (There's two of them within 5min walk of hostel). You get free meal next door in Rattle n Hum every evening. There's also very cheap deals in the Woolshed in the evenings - you can get a huge dinner for $10.
Also there's night markets right next door to hostel - open till round 11pm. Has everything for tourist and lots of different foods for very cheap.
Supermarkets - huge Woolworths which has everything you need is within 5min walk. There's also a massive Shopping centre within 10 min walk.
All nightlife - pubs n clubs are all within 2-10min walk. Lots of promotions always on - happy hours etc. Lots of taxi's. Cairns is a pretty safe city (more like a town), i lived there for 7 months and never had any problems. Its a very laid back place and the weather is always fab.
Cairns also close to Kuranda, Port Douglas, Daintree rainforest, Cape Tribulation, Hartleys Croc Farm - they are must see's when your up the coast that far. And off course the GBR (Great Barrier Reef) - there are so many different ways to see it - plane, boat - fast, slow etc, snorkelling, scuba diving. I did them all and its an amazing place. They say the coral reef will be gone in next 20 years due to humans so you should visit and make the most of it whilst you can.
Car rentals are very cheap in Cairns (bargain with them) - so i'd recommend renting a car with A/C and just take a road trip up the coast to Cap Trib, stop over at the various sights and attractions on way, you might get to see a few croc's! Then stay over in PK's in Cape Trib and enjoy. We did jungle surfing up there (with hangovers), excellent!
Humid season is Nov - Dec, be prepared for the heat and very very humid conditions. A/C is your only hope! But u do eventually get use to the humidy.
Wet season is from Jan - March, when it rains, it really rains! This can last up to a few wks, but your actually abit thankful of it as its usually very humid.
From Feb - Nov is fab weather... lots and lots of sun! You'l never need a jacket!
Once you stay in Cairns you wont want to leave!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.