Butterfly Sanctuary

Butterfly Sanctuary is a must-do when visiting North Queensland.   When your visiting Cairns the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is the largest exhibition of butterflies in Australia.

The sanctuary includes a  laboratory that breeds around 30,000 caterpillars each year to ensure that we will always have butterflies in our gardens.

Open daily with over1500 free-flying butterflies from a variety of species. If you wear white, pink or red which attracts the butterflies to interact with you.

Once you arrive at this all-weather attraction, you can wander through beautiful Rainforest Gardens.

About the Sanctuary

The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is home to over 1,500 brilliant tropical butterflies, making it the largest in the Southern Hemisphere!

Kuranda’s  Butterfly Sanctuary designed to replicate the butterfly’s natural Rainforest environment. As you wander through the aviary,  enjoy close up encounters with these beautiful butterflies.

The Sanctuary includes a butterfly museum, with a display of 584 butterfly and moth species showcasing butterfly species from all over the World.

Included in the 30 minutes guided tour is an informative, educational experience.  That explains the life of a butterfly.  While your there you may visit the butterfly breeding laboratory.

Discover the best ways to attract butterflies into your garden.    There are lot of butterflies and moths that are only found in the tropical rainforest of North Queensland which is why this fantastic exhibition is located here so don’t miss visiting the Butterfly Sanctuary when your in North Queensland.

Fun Facts

Cairns Birdwing Butterfly is Australia’s largest butterfly.  With a  wingspan on the females can be 5.9 inches.  Its favoured habitat is in the Wet tropic rainforest of North Queensland.

Discover the World’s largest moth, the Hercules Moth. Found only in North Queensland and New Guinea.    The Hercules Moth, features in the Guinness Book of records with a wingspan of 36 centimetres.

During your visit see the beautiful Ulysses Butterfly.  With its magnificent iridescent blue and a wingspan of 10.5 centimetres. The Ulysses butterfly is a large swallowtail butterfly.


Host an Event

The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is available to host your next event.  This great location is ideal for weddings, corporate events and parties.


Centrally located the Butterfly Sanctuary is just a short walk from the Kuranda Scenic Railway Station.

  • Largest butterfly flight aviary in Australia.
  • Over 1,500 butterflies including Ulysses and Cairns Birdwing.
  • Free guided tours.


Included in your Butterfly experience

  • Starting with FREE guided tours included in the cost of your admission. Next, learn about the butterfly’s life cycle and elaborate courtship rituals.
  • Then see the world the way a butterfly does in the UV light display!
  • Entrance into the Laboratory.  Learn all about caterpillars as you see them in their various stages of development.
  • Use the sanctuary’s state of the art microscope. Next, Using the lens, you will see the intricate details of the butterfly’s anatomy.  The microscope is easy to operate for all ages!
  • Entrance into the educational exhibits.  Then watch the Cairns Birdwing emerging video, and the silk moth Caterpillars live display.
  • Entry into the butterfly museum. View 584 different butterfly species from around the world!
  • Be sure to wear your brightest pink or red shirt to attract the butterflies!
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Camera
  • Hat and water

The Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is located at 8 Rob Veivers Drive, Kuranda Village.

Self Drivers

Start travelling North from Cairns along the Captain Cook Highway and crossing over the Barron River.

Next, continue through roundabouts past Machans Beach, Holloways Beach and Yorkeys Knob.

Then at the Smithfield roundabout, veer left to the Kuranda Range along the Kennedy Highway.

Along the way, stop off for great views and photo opportunities at the Henry Ross lookout.

After continuing passing over the Barron River Bridge and turning left following the Kuranda Village signs.

Then take a left-hand turn into Rob Vievers Drive and arrive at the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary.

Train and Skyrail

Choose the free shuttle or a leisurely walk when you arrive on the  Kuranda Skyrail or the Kuranda Train.




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