Port Douglas has been lauded for its beauty and abundance for centuries, and is home to one of Australia’s most remarkable natural landscapes – the Daintree Rainforest.
The traditional owners of the land – the Eastern Kuku Yalanji and Yirrganydji peoples – have enriched the area with Indigenous cultural heritage and taken care to preserve the unspoilt scenery that we are lucky enough to visit. With so many natural wonders, a bounty of wildlife and a community with a deep appreciation for the land, it’s no surprise ecotourism is thriving. Here are a few of our favourite sustainable activities in Port Douglas.
Explore the waterways on a Lady Douglas River Cruise
Spend some time floating down the mangrove-lined channels of Dicksons Inlet while you learn about the history of the area from a rather funny, super informative skipper. You’ll spot plenty of birds and wildlife, maybe even a crocodile or two, as you wind through the waterways before heading out to soak up views of the coastal ranges.
Visit Mossman Gorge Centre
Go hiking with Back Country Bliss Adventure
For active travellers, spend the day exploring the best Port Douglas hiking trails with the team at Back Country Bliss Adventures. They’re an eco-certified tourism operator with a true dedication to preserving and celebrating the natural beauty of the area. You can choose from a range of exhilarating trails depending on your fitness level and interests.
One of the best is the Manjal Jimalji trail, elso known as Devil’s Thumb. In the heart of the Daintree National Park, this full day hike takes you through a variety of landscapes, offering gorgeous sea and mountain views at every turn. For something a little more low-key, charge up your camera and set out for a walk through the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area.
Visit the Daintree Discovery Centre
A visit to the Daintree Discovery Centre is a must. The award-winning facility is the central hub for exploring this incredible feat of nature. There are a series of walking trails that set out from the centre, including the elevated Rainforest Skywalk which allows you to wander through the tree canopy and see the rainforest from above. The Interpretive Display Centre is a great place to begin the day. Here, you’ll watch immersive videos, read interesting stories and learn about the rainforest, its inhabitants, threats it is facing and how we can protect it.
Cycle along Four Mile Beach
This is easily one of the most popular activities in Port Douglas. There’s something about cruising along the esplanade that just screams “tropical holiday.” There are plenty of bike rental options in Port Douglas. You can often organise rental through your hotel concierge or you can find one of the many providers online.
Bike Shop and Hire has been around for years and has a range of bike and ebike options. Leaving the shop, head towards the Esplanade and join the beach at Port Douglas Surf Club. This stunning stretch of beach has a nice, firm surface so you can actually ride along the shoreline for over 4-kilometres. Of course, don’t forget your helmets and plenty of sunscreen.