Category Archives: Port Douglas

— Port Douglas —

100 Incredible Travel Secrets #85 Osprey’s Restaurant, QLD

WRITTEN BY EDITOR • APRIL 3, 2013

  • A side of ocean or mountain views?

    Osprey’s Restaurant, Port Douglas, Qld

    It’s all about local food and views at Osprey’s Restaurant at Thala Beach Lodge, just south of Port Douglas.

    The modern-Australian menu uses ingredients grown onsite, while the views go beyond the private beach to the ocean and nearby mountains.

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      Osprey’s Restaraunt

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    — Port Douglas —

    Port Douglas – The Australian Traveller Guide

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • NOVEMBER 25, 2012

    A popular getaway destination for Australians to wait out winter, Port Douglas offers palm trees and sarongs, as well as sun-drenched streets with flashy eateries and trendy boutiques. Although it can explode to double its size during high season, Port Douglas still manages to retain the charm of a sleepy fishing village. Normally home to just 3000 locals, this picturesque town is less than 70 kilometres north of Cairns, and is a gateway to the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree rainforest.

    WHERE TO STAY

    Port Douglas suits any kind of traveller, with a wide variety of options. For solo travellers, it’s easy to meet people at Dougie’s Backpackers Resort with its pool, barbeque area and bar. It also provides one-man tent accommodation, so it’s easy to save some cash and skirt the dorm-room anxiety.

    There is a plethora of apartments to choose from. Try the affordable one-bedrooms of Martinique on Macrossan, which are clean, simple and feature a colourful pool area with décor straight out of Alice in Wonderland. For something upscale and luxurious, try the Sea Temple resort & Spa. A little way from the centre of town, it can be a much-needed oasis to escape the tourist bustle.

    If the plan is to splash out in Port Douglas, then experience ultimate luxury at Thala Beach Lodge, located on a private stretch of coastline. It boasts a suite and themed bungalows, spread throughout the forest canopy, allowing guests to have an unobstructed, intimate encounter with nature. Unique activities on offer include a coconut tour, bird watching, kayaking, access to a secluded beach, guided nature walks on the grounds and evening talks with the KuKu-Yalanji people. Although a good 16 kilometres from the Port Douglas’ centre, a shuttle service operates to town.


    WHAT TO DO

    Local favourite Four Mile Beach takes in the endless stretch of white sand with a backdrop of palm trees and tropical forests. If you don’t consider “beaching” itself an activity, then jet skis and snorkelling sets are also available for hire, or for the more ambitious get qualified for a PADI open water scuba dive at Tech Dive Academy, a five-minute drive away. Port Douglas Yacht Club hosts free sunset sails every Wednesday evening for 90 minutes.

    There are plenty of activities to see you through days that are not quite so sun-drenched. Stroll through Wildlife Habitat with all the benefits of a zoo, except the animals are in enclosures that imitate their natural environment. There are also rare opportunities to view the wildlife in a different way, including Breakfast with the Birds, Lunch with the Lorikeets and a visit to the Wildlife Care Centre, which has a VIP Behind the Scenes Tour. Finish off your night with a unique gourmet experience, Flames of the Forest, just ten minutes from Port Douglas, but worlds away in its breathtaking scenery. Enjoy storytelling and performances by indigenous locals, or begin an unforgettable Saturday eve with smoked kangaroo bruschetta dining under the brightly lit canopy, enveloped by the rainforest.

    If you want to get out of town, make sure to take advantage of its location and take a daytrip to explore the Great Barrier Reef, or cruise for a few days to get to the less damaged diving sights further out. If you prefer dry land, then consider a 4WD guided safari of the Daintree Rainforest, preferably one that includes Cape Tribulation and the stunning Mossman Gorge.

    WHEN TO TRAVEL

    The most popular time of year to go is winter, where average day-time temperatures are in the mid-20s, and nights are cool. If you do miss out on the winter months, consider going in May when Port Douglas hosts their own Carnivale, complete with street parade and unique events to taste the local cuisine and wine. The rainy season, December to February, translates to good accommodation deals and a totally different experience of this tropical destination.

    TRANSPORT
    The best way to get to Port Douglas is to go via Cairns International Airport, which is serviced by all the major domestic airlines. For the one-hour trip north, catch a private limousine or coach with Exemplar (from $160 one-way/ $33 one-way, 07 4098 5044), or a cab ($150, 07 4048 8311). Hiring a car from Cairns Airport is also an option.

    — Port Douglas —

    100 Best Views In Australia #14 Mossman Gorge, QLD

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • APRIL 1, 2012

    Where is it? In the southern section of the World Heritage-Listed Daintree National Park, about 20km west  of Port Douglas in tropical north Queensland

    How to see it for yourself?

    This image was taken from the base of steps down to the waterhole at Mossman Gorge. The the best way to see this view first-hand is on fivefoot. Guided walks are available, which encompass other sites that are culturally significant to the local Kuku Yalanji people. The vivid green of the water pictured tends to happen after extended periods without rain. According to the photographer, for ultimate serenity, the best time to visit is early in the morning before the crowds set in.

    Why I love it

    “Towards the end of the dry season the rapids of Mossman Gorge have usually disappeared. By then, the calm waters offer a perfect place to take a dip and escape the heat of Tropical North Queensland. I really love this view because the shades of green in the water and surrounding rainforest are truly remarkable.” – Mark Gray

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    — Port Douglas —

    Port Douglas: Northern Star

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • APRIL 22, 2011

    Port Douglas is a Tropical North Queensland town well-loved for its proximity to the reef and rainforest. It’s known as a retreat for celebrities and wealthy retirees, but Elisabeth Knowles wonders what it’s like for the rest of us. Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Affordable Summer Holidays: Port Douglas

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 20, 2010

    AT’s guide to the best cheap accommodation for summer and Christmas holidays

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    — Port Douglas —

    Enjoy a taste of Paradise at Port Douglas Carnivale

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • APRIL 30, 2010

    Port Douglas will be alive with food, music and fun filled activities between May 20 and 30 this year, with Port Douglas’ Carnivale shaping up to be one of the best ever. By Anna Hager Continue reading

    — Port Douglas —

    Gourmet Experience #099 Feed your soul at Flames of the Forest

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • APRIL 1, 2010

    Since writing about Flames of the Forest two years ago for our 100 Great Things To Do In Australia You’ve Never Heard Of, this sublime dining experience has undergone some changes.

    With the sounds of the forest and nearby mountain creek providing accompaniment, the entire experience is food for your soul.

    For starters, having picked up the marquee and moved two minutes along the bush path to a new site, the restaurant can now cater for up to 900 people. Luckily the concept hasn’t changed – guests dine under a protective covering beneath the canopy of a Port Douglas rainforest.

    The staff just finished hand-beading crystal chandeliers and installing new candelabras that cast a twinkling glow over the larger patch of rainforest. Add thousands of twinkling candles, champagne on arrival and beautiful food prepared onsite and Flames of the Forest returns bigger and better.

    Now you can choose between two experiences: a night of Aboriginal storytelling or a romantic evening for two. The Aboriginal cultural performance by Gary and Robert Creek follows a six-course banquet with storytelling and didgeridoo performances. With the sounds of the forest and nearby mountain creek providing accompaniment, the entire experience is food for your soul.

    A three-course meal is served at tables set for two on Saturday nights, so indulge in a night away from the rest of the world with your special someone.

    Where: In the rainforest 10mins from Port Douglas, Qld. (07) 4099 3144, www.flamesoftheforest.com.au

    Did you know: Staff at Flames of the Forest are always on hand to make sure guests are enjoying their meal, and in fact have happily pointed out the perfect spot to pop the question on several occasions.

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    — Port Douglas —

    The Other Port Douglas

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • OCTOBER 27, 2009

    AT Reader Shandos Cleaver from Thirroul in NSW has discovered her favourite secret holiday spot is Port Douglas – although not the one in Far North Qld. This one is a secluded bay on SA’s Eyre Peninsula.

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    — Port Douglas —

    The [W]right House Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes

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    — Port Douglas —

    Villa Empat Puluh Dua Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Si Como No Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Shambhala Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Oak Beach Villa Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Mystique Beach House Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    Mali Mali Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

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    — Port Douglas —

    Horizon Vista Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

    Australian Traveller Magazine’s 100 Great Australian Holiday Homes

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    — Port Douglas —

    Bali Hai Holiday House

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 10, 2009

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    — Port Douglas —

    The Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • JULY 24, 2009

    Imagine an absolute beachfront oasis nestled between the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest, and you have Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas. Continue reading

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    — Port Douglas —

    100 Best Towns In Australia #3 Port Douglas,QLD

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • MARCH 25, 2009

    Port Douglas is a traditional boom and bust kind of town. In 1877 the village boomed like any good Australian town when gold was found in the nearby river system. And when the railway snaked into southern rival Cairns 14 years later, it was all bust for Port Douglas, dwindling to a small fishing village of 100 in the 1960s. Which is right about the time arch white-collar criminal Christopher Skase stumbled upon it and decided to build a world-class resort.

    His development of the Sheraton Mirage on Four Mile Beach marked the beginning of the revival that saw Port Douglas become a playground for the rich and in/un and just famous. It has a number of excellent restaurants (AT’s pick is Harrisons), bars and nightlife for the young at heart, as well as activities for the kids. Trips to the reef can be less hectic and crowded than from Cairns, and nearby Mossman Gorge, Daintree rainforest and other activities mean most wishes of holidaymakers are met – especially during the idyllic months of April to October.

    “Any town whose property has tripled in value in a decade must have something going for it. Sealed roads end here, so savour the moments, even if the markets now stock organic miso soup rather than handmade coconut shell etchings.” – Justin Wastnage

    The final say goes to local AT Reader Helen Whyte, who loves the following about her hometown: “Rainforest to reef and Coral Sea, tropical balmy weather, fresh-caught seafood at a myriad of great restaurants, and its ’Mango Season’, when all of us who live here go a little troppo.”

    Where? // Around 70km (1hr 15min) north of Cairns along the pretty Captain Cook Hwy.

    Did you know? //
    Once known as Terrigal, Island Point, Port Owen and Salisbury, Port Douglas was also President Bill Clinton’s only vacation stop on his 1996 Aussie tour. Five years later and out of office, Clinton returned to Port Douglas. It’s reported that he was advised of the September 11 attacks while dining at the Salsa Bar & Grill. He returned to the states the very next day.

     

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    — Port Douglas —

    Go Troppo in Port Douglas

    WRITTEN BY ADMIN • SEPTEMBER 25, 2008

    Too much sun can get you a little kooky. But that only makes things better for the future festivities in tropical town Port Douglas. Continue reading

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