Photo: Scenic Port Douglas Far North Queensland
Over the last thirty years, Port Douglas has grown from a sleepy seaside village to an international standard resort town. With that, there are more than 50 restaurants and more than 150 tours on offer, many to the beautiful Great Barrier Reef and the spectacular Daintree, Mossman and Cape Tribulation rainforests.
Hiring a car is the best way to get to Port Douglas from the city of Cairns. The drive from Cairns to Port Douglas affords some of the best coastal scenery in Australia, taking you past wonderful swimming beaches to the shopping and restaurants of Port Douglas and Palm Cove.
En route you will discover Cairns’ idyllic northern beaches. Stop of at Yorkey’s Knob, Machans, Trinity, Holloways or Ellis Beach, or head to the stylish village of Palm Cove for a paddle, a cold ale and freshly cooked fish and chips overlooking the waters.
Much is to be said for unwinding on Port Douglas’s own gorgeous Four Mile Beach, a stretch of golden sand studded with shady palm trees just perfect for lazing under.
If you feel like a few quiet days of relaxation on a beach, accommodation ranges from well-appointed, self-contained beach front or beachside units and apartments, to comfy cabins and caravans with uninterrupted water views.
In the Daintree and Mossman, you can stay in a range of lodges and resorts from stylish treehouses perched in the forest canopy to comfortable cabins among the trees.
Port Douglas restaurants are some of the best to be found! For one of the best dining experiences in the world head to the Nautilus at 17 Murphy Street, Port Douglas- it is often frequented by visiting celebrities (including President Bill Clinton) and both cuisine and open air tropical surrounds are exquisite. Phone (07) 40995330.
Another experience not to be missed would be the ’Breakfast With The Birds’ at the Rainforest Habitat, an amazing park showcasing the natural inhabitants (both animals and plants) of the Tropical North.
Sunday is the day for visiting the Port Douglas market by the sea. You’ll find everything from handwoven hammocks and fresh coconut milk straight from the nut, to exotic herbs and tropical fruits grown on the Atherton Tableland.
Croc spotting, barramundi fishing and bird watching are the most popular pursuits on the river. Take a tour of the rainforest here or in nearby Mossman Gorge. You’ll see bush turkeys, timid jungle perch suspended in crystal clear pools, and water rushing over mossy rocks in this pristine wilderness.
One of the best ways to experience the World Heritage listed Wet Tropics rainforests is to join local Aboriginal woman Hazel Douglas on her personalised Native Guide Safari of the Daintree, Mossman Gorge and Cape Tribulation forests. The tour takes a maximum of 11 people. The tariff includes pickup from Cairns or Port Douglas including Daintree River Ferry, four wheel driving and picnic lunch. Hazel Douglas’ Native Guide Safari Ph (07) 40 982 206.
Travelling to Tropical North Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef has become faster and smoother aboard Quicksilver’s Silversonic luxury super cruiser.
More time on the reef and more comfort getting there is what the 29 metre vessel offers divers and snorkellers wanting to explore one of the world’s Seven Natural Wonders.
Silversonic travels daily to three sites on the spectacular Agincourt Reef and has permits to access other sites to make the most of weather and sea conditions.
See a map of the Far Tropical North showing Cairns and the Surrounding Region : Tropical North - Cairns Map.
See the weather for Cairns Weather North Queensland Australia.
Thought about work in Queensland? See about requirements and opportunities for work in Australia - Work in Australia.
Accommodation in places like Cairns is plentiful, with everything from quality backpacker lodges and self-contained apartments to beachfront B&Bs and world class resorts on offer. Accommodation throughout Australia, see Hotels in Australia.
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Photo: Beach and Jetty at Palm Cove