About Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree

Places to Visit

Places to Visit

There are so many places to visit while you are in the Port Douglas and Daintree area. Port Douglas is the closest town to the Great Barrier Reef, so a visit to this precious World Heritage listed natural beauty is a must do. We also encompass the site of an equally spectacular piece of nature, the World Heritage listed Daintree Rainforest. Why not visit Cape Tribulation, the only place in the world where these two sites, the reef and rainforest meet?

Get up close with wild Daintree River crocodiles at Daintree Village, swim in the spectacular Mossman Gorge or venture out to some of the surrounding outback areas to Port Douglas and the Daintree.

Wherever you choose to visit, you can be assured there is a special place for you in Port Douglas and the Daintree. See you in paradise soon.

News By Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree

Save the date for Carnivale !

Save the date for Carnivale

By Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree

20 Dec 2016

Dates have been announced for the annual Port Douglas Carnivale from 26th - 28th May 2017.

Showcasing the best of Tropical North Queensland from local food and wines to talented musicians and friendly, family fun, Port Douglas Carnivale is one of Australia's most exciting and diverse events.

Crocs, Cassowaries and Kangaroos: Where to Spot Wildlife in Far North Queensland

Crocs, Cassowaries and Kangaroos: Where to Spot Wildlife in Far North Queensland

By Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree

20 Dec 2016

Part of what makes Port Douglas and the Daintree so unique are the interesting creatures that call Tropical North Queensland 'home'. From wild crocs to croc feeding, kangaroos, and of course the ancient and elusive cassowary, here is your guide to finding them.

The Great Barrier Reef

What to spot: turtles, manta rays, tropical fish, dolphins and whales

One of the primary places to spot beautiful creatures is of course under the sea! Take a day trip out to the Great Barrier Reef, grab some fins and a snorkel, stick your head under the water and be prepared to be astounded by the variety of life see. While Africa has ‘The Big 5’, the Great Barrier Reef boasts ‘The Great 8’. The eight iconic residents of this magnificent underwater ecosystem include manta rays, clown fish (aka ‘Nemo’), reef sharks, turtles, the Maori wrasse, potato cods, giant clams and humpback whales. You’re pretty likely to spot one of these striking creatures on a trip out to the reef so have your underwater camera ready!

Wildlife Habitat

What to spot: all kinds of native Australian animals from the local area

If you’re looking to get up close and personal with native Australian wildlife, make a beeline for Wildlife Habitat in Port Douglas. I’ve visited the habitat a few times now and since I go weak at the knees at the sight of cute and cuddly marsupials, it’s one of my favourite things to do when in Far North Queensland. Entirely independently funded, the Wildlife Habitat is committed to the conservation of wildlife and provides a quality ecotourism experience.

Unlike many other parks, the Wildlife Habitat provides a fully immersive wildlife experience for visitors. The various habitats are open and interactive, allowing guests and wildlife to mingle in a spacious natural setting. You literally walk right through the animals’ habitats on a series of elevated boardwalks while they go about their business and roam freely. Pick up some kangaroo feed from the entry and stop to feed the roos and wallabies – they’ll come right up and nibble from your hand!

The Daintree River

What to spot: saltwater crocodiles, frogs, snakes, bats and birds

Along the beaches and estuaries in Far North Queensland, you might seen the big, yellow ‘WARNING’ signs about crocodiles inhabiting the area. Trust me, they’re there for a reason. This area is home to ‘salties’ – large and fearsome predators that inhabit tidal rivers, saltwater creeks and even the shallow beaches. While attacks are rare, they do happen and most likely occur as a result of carelessness around the water’s edge. While you certainly don’t want a nasty surprise by one of these beasts, they are marvellous, prehistoric creatures that are fascinating to observe from a safe distance.

One of the best places to see them is on the Daintree River where a number of operators run croc-spotting wildlife cruises. I’d highly recommend heading out on a one-hour cruise with the eco-friendly Solar Whisper. The quiet and clean electric boat allows you to get up close to the wildlife without disturbing it or polluting the river. There’s a 99% success rate of spotting crocodiles (if you don’t spot one, you can come again for free), as well as a range of other wildlife including snakes, frogs, fish and bats. Within only a couple of minutes of boarding the boat, we spotted this 2.5 metre crocodile known as ‘Gump’ swimming alongside the bank.

Daintree Rainforest

What to spot: southern cassowary, frogs, flying foxes, birds, lizards and snakes

The World Heritage listed Daintree Rainforest is one of the only places in the world where the rainforest meets the reef but it is its antiquity that really sets it apart. It’s the oldest tropical rainforest on earth and is thought to be between 110 – 200 million years old. To put that into perspective, the Amazon Rainforest is only about seven million years old. It’s a complex ecosystem and a place of striking biodiversity; it boasts the highest variety of plants and animals found in any tropical rainforest on the planet. It’s also home to some of Australia’s most beautiful wildlife including the endangered southern cassowary, ulysses butterflies, tree kangaroos, white-lipped tree frogs, Boyd’s forest dragons and much more.

The best way to learn about the rainforest, its history and the creatures that live in it is at the Daintree Discovery Centre, located 10km north of the Daintree River. The centre has an advanced ecotourism accreditation with every structure having been built off the ground to allow for minimal environmental impact. Grab an audio guide (try the indigenous interpretive commentary) and make your way across the spectacular 11m-high aerial walkway towards the canopy tower that reaches 23m high. From up here, you’ll be able to spot all kinds of wildlife that you wouldn’t otherwise see from down below. Afterwards, explore the rainforest via the elevated boardwalks which allow you to see, smell and experience the rainforest first-hand without disturbing the fragile root systems.


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