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Anyone here ever been to Port Douglas?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by lil, Mar 15, 2005.

  1. Dave and I are heading to the (seemingly) beautiful Port Douglas at the end of April and I thought I'd find out if anyone here has been and if so, what do you recommend/condemn (!).

    We're looking at doing a Quicksilver outer reef tour, hiring a car for two days and having a look at Cape Trib and Cairns. The main idea of the trip is to relax, so we don't want to fill up our whole seven days....we need some quality beach time! Also, good value is a must as funds are tight....

    Any ideas?

    :D :D :D


     
  2. Yep, been there done that :)

    We stayed at the YHA in PD for a week and then the Radison Treetops resort. You'll love it, very nice place to go if you want to chill. Also plenty of local shops and nice restaurants.

    I also did the Quicksilver outer reef tour, make sure you go for the try dive scuba option, their other trip is also good (out to a desert island for the day).

    Also go for a Cape Tribulation rain-forest trip and an early ride in a hot-air balloon. The actual beach in PD is not that great (ants) but if you're in a decent hotel with pools, who cares. We didn't hire a boring old car though....we hired a cool 800 custom bike to cruise around on 8)

    + Cairns itself is nasty, don't bother going there.

    Hope you both have fun!
     
  3. I only spent one day there but the two places I visited were:
    Th Courthouse Hotel is a good night out especially if there is bike racing on at the time (multiple TV sets).
    Zinc restaurant is really nice but may put a hole in the buget. I had a five course (set menu) meal there with (nice) wine for $76 per head.
    Pity you don't have the bike. The roads through the Tablelands are awesome. If you get the car, head up to Mt Molloy for a hambuger. You'll be lucky if you can finish it!
    Cheers,
    Pete
     
  4. yeah do the quicksilver thing and theres also some dusk dinner cruises which are good for putting you in the mood because you know he deserves it ;)

    i did the camping/caravan park thing for the tight budget which is always fantastic, meeting new people is good.

    you can quite easily waste several days pottering around the rainforests, bird sanctuary’s etc.

    get a few things from the info joint at the airport and just play it by ear or fly by the seat of your pants if you will ;)
     
  5. Yeah the Roads through the Tablelands are great. Another great drive is the road along the coast between Cairns & Port Douglas.

    We went up there our honeymoon & got a good deal on an MX-5 rental car.

    Great way to see Port Douglas!
     
  6. Most of the resorts are great. Take a look at the aqueous http://resortsclub.breakfree.com.au/resorts/?resort=69 - brand new 4 star - loses a star because it doesn't have a restaurant (opens April 1). I've stayed previously at the portsea http://www.breakfree.com.au/resorts/default.asp?resort=24 which is decent but a bit further out of town. Definitely find a resort with a nice pool (if you intend on lounging around) because, as said above, the beach isn't that great. Food is great within Port Douglas and don't really need a restaurant.

    In cape trib - if you are planning on the resort again look into http://www.ferntreelodge.com.au/ - owned by the same people as coconut beach (the expensive cape trib resort). Camping is great there too - lots of camp sites that have showers etc. available for use (and some camp sites are virtually on the beach).

    Lots of great day trips around there.

    Palm Cove is another nice resort town with a much nicer beach than port - in fact it was voted as one of Australia's cleanest beaches. The only problem is that it takes longer to get to the outer reef - you can still do it though. It also tends to be busier than Port too because it is that much closer to Cairns.
     
  7. Good point Steve,
    The Captain Cook Highway is a great drive/ride!
    Cheers,
    Pete
     
  8. its a great place,plenty of tourist.
    make sure u fly virginblue!!!! cos i wrk for them.
     
  9. We've already booked and paid for accommodation and flights (staying at Villa San Michele on Macrossan street and flying Jetstar...best prices we could get!), so just need recommendations for activities. I would love to ride while we're up there, but I'm not going to take my gear with me and I WILL NOT rent gear....so car it is.

    Steve, who did you get the deal for the MX-5 with....it seems there is only Avis and Thrifty in Port Douglas, so competition is not fantastic.

    Also, is it possible to drive to Cape Trib up the coast in a normal car? I put the details into whereis.com and it gave me a VERY long trip....240kms in 9hrs :shock: :?

    Thanks for the feedback...keep it coming, cos I NEED a GREAT holiday!

    :D :D :D
     
  10. If you need a great holiday, may I suggest a week of PS2, coke, beer, and pizza?

    *sighs*

    I'm sleeping on the couch methinks ...
     
  11. roflmao @ Dave :D :D

    Sounds like a bloody brilliant holiday to me too mate :p
     
  12. Certainly is! My wife and I did it in a toyota camry when we were last up there. The road is fully sealed etc. It is 100 k/hr most of the way. I think it took us about 2 hours (relaxing drive) to get to the ferry, and then a further 2 hours to get to our accomodation (which was at the far end of the only road along cape trib). (see http://www.dctta.asn.au/itineraries.htm )

    If you like coffee - you may wish to check out coffee works in Mareeba (http://www.arabicas.com.au)! It is a nice stop on a day trip to Paronella Park ( http://www.cairnsattractions.com/a_paronella-park.html ). The sky-rail ( http://www.cairnsattractions.com/a_skyrail.html ) was ok, but nothing too exciting. If you like exotic birds/ wildlife - definitely do breakfast with the birds (at the Rainforest habitat in Port Douglas - you may need to book ahead of time).
     
  13. the drive between cairns and port douglas is awesome! its so scenic with the beach on one side and the rainforest on the other :D

    check out the mossman gorge, especially if its raining :D

    the tablelands drives are great too... if ur up for it, go for the twistier and shorter highway out of the ones through the tablelands. its 10x more fun than the other one :)

    check out the bigger of the 2 volcanic lakes (forget its name). oh and u can drive up the mountain to where the skyrail goes, i drove up and down twice one night just cos of the fun factor (rental cars are great for thrashing :D )

    all in all its a very scenic and pretty area, with lots of awesome driving/riding to be done. wish i could remember more of the place names to help u out but if u take at a look at a map u'll know what i mean :)

    mikk
     
  14. I'd prefer to skip Paronella park. Been there, wasn't impressed by the "castle" or the entry price.

    Nice grounds though.
     
  15. It been 10 years since I've been to Port Douglas. Great place.
    My recommendation is to avoid the really large tours. Look for some of the small operators for a more personal and relaxed experience.

    Some things we did when we were there
    Cape Trib 4 wheel drive trip. 4 passengers and was run by a wildlife photographer. A great lesson in photography and a brilliant day.
    Sail boat cruise out to the reef (with scuba diving when we got there). Was on a small catermaran, about 10 people on board (brilliant!!!)
     
  16. We hired it from a small rental place in Carins lil (sorry - can't remember the name. We stayed at Yorkey's Knob ( :LOL: ) and drove everywhere from there.

    Not much of a place but a good base to start from.

    Crystal Cascades in Redlynch is nice too. If you go up there at night take a torch. Don't turn it on until you get near the top. Flash it quickly just once and all the fireflies go bezerk.

    Looks pretty cool.
     
  17. HI LiL, I have now moved up to Townsville again, If your looking at the city, I think Townsville has it over Cains, lot more to do and easier to get out to the reef and, its only 3 hrs from here to Cains by bike. P/Douglas is a great ride, Like the great ocean rd but much shorter, make sure you do the daintree area and markets which are set in the rain forest up in cains and, Malanda is great riding country too, if you like to meet up in Cains while yr there give me a yell I nead another weekend run
    cheers have a great time Steve st1100