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Portsmith Cairns

Portsmith Cairns: Your 2024 Guide

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Portsmith Cairns

Portsmith is a suburb in the Central Cairns area, with a population of less than 500 people. However, the small population is explained by the land use. The suburb is mainly small industrial and port facilities.

Portsmith, Qld

Portsmith also has a significant amount of light industry. There are small manufacturers, carriers, meat and seafood suppliers and businesses relevant to the marine sector.

Indeed, the area is also home to the State Government’s Northern Fisheries Facility and the TAFE Queensland, Great Barrier Reef International Marine College.

However the industry providing the most employment to residents of the suburb has nothing to do with the port. Indeed the biggest employer of people actually living in Portsmith is ‘Aged Care and Social Assistance’.


The suburb lies within Division 5 of the Cairns Regional Council local government area. At the state level it is completely within the Cairns electorate, while at the federal level Portsmith is within the electorate of Leichhardt.

International Marine College

The Great Barrier Reef International Marine College (GBRIMC), is located at 55-61 Tingira Street in Portsmith Cairns. The college provides maritime training to local, national and international clients.

As part of the TAFE Queensland GBRIMC is at an industry leader in delivering high quality maritime education and training to seafarers.

International Marine College
International Marine College

Portsmith Cairns Dump

Waste facilities are located at the western end of the suburb, bordered by Chinaman Creek, Ray Jones Drive and Trinity Inlet. These include the old Cairns landfill (which was closed earlier this century), the council waste transfer station and the buyback shop.

Indeed at the waste transfer station is where residents can drop off items that don’t belong or cannot fit in household rubbish bins. Indeed household recyclables can be dropped off for free along with scrap metal and many other items.

Portsmith Transfer Station
Portsmith Transfer Station

Portsmith Cairns Map

Climate Change

Cairns Regional Council has produced a map that shows the Portsmith area. This map is of a topographical nature and highlights the risk of storm surge inundation and flooding in this area.

The entire suburb is flat low-lying land. It is less than 10 metres above sea level. Consequently, sea-level rise is impacting the suburb, parts of which are underwater at times of King Tide.

Portsmith Cairns
Portsmith Cairns

Boat Ramps and Boating

There are two modern boat ramps located in the suburb. Consequently both offer easy access to Trinity Inlet. They are the Fearnley Street boat ramp and the Tingira Street boat ramp, both of which have easy access and lots of room.

The suburb is also home to the Cairns Cruising Yacht Squadron which offers a range of marine services including a marina with a courtesy berth, secure boat storage area and private boat ramp.  Consequently the club overlooks Smith’s Creek and the mountains behind.  

Portsmith Cairns FAQs

What is the postcode for Portsmith?

The postcode is 4870.

Is there a post office in Portsmith?

There is no post office in the suburb.

Are there any schools in Portsmith?

There are no primary or secondary schools in the suburb. However, the Great Barrier Reef International Marine College is located in Portsmith.

Central Cairns

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3 responses to “Portsmith Cairns: Your 2024 Guide”

  1. […] the wet season, people are often aware of flood vulnerability in suburbs such as Portsmith, Bungalow, Cairns North and the Cairns CBD. However, they are not as aware of the possibility of […]

  2. […] Cairns for our purposes includes the Cairns CBD and the nearby suburbs of Portsmith, Bungalow in Parramatta Park […]