Looking for what to do in Port Douglas? A popular destination for backpackers and honeymooners, if you’re after a carefree beach holiday, Port Douglas at the tip of Queensland, Australia has got it all. Taking less than an hours drive to get from Cairns to Port Douglas, it is a perfect base to explore Australia’s natural landscape. After checking into your Port Douglas accommodation, waste no time and head out to the Great Barrier Reef for snorkeling scuba diving and boat cruises. The Kuranda Rail is a must do experience, taking you past rainforest and waterfalls.
A visit to the world heritage Daintree rainforest Cape Tribulation and Low Isles are essential to understanding the beauty of Port Douglas and the region. If you haven’t organised car rental in Port Douglas there are plenty of tours in and around the area. Simply browse our catalogue for all things to do in Port Douglas. If a Port Douglas luxury experience is more your style, be prepared for pampering with deluxe spas, villages and resort style accommodation. In addition, if you're looking for more information on what to do in Queensland as a whole instead of just what to do in Port Douglas, or even an efficient Port Douglas Itinerary for stays of varying lengths, be sure to check out our detailed information pages!
The Top 10 Things to Do in Port Douglas
At the Northern tip of Queensland, Port Douglas is a tropical paradise. As it is on the ‘Reef and Rainforest Coast’, Port Douglas offers abundant natural beauty. Enjoy the perfect tropical holiday by visiting the Great Barrier Reef and the World Heritage rainforests, Daintree and Cape Tribulation.
1. Take a cruise to the reef
Port Douglas is the closest mainland point to the Great Barrier Reef, making it easy and fast to get there. You cannot miss experience this stunning natural wonder! Take a cruise there and be amazed as you snorkel or scuba dive with colourful coral and other marine life.
- Join Australia’s most-awarded reef cruise to experience the outer Barrier Reef and its unsurpassed vibrant coral formations and spectacular marine life.
- One day on the reef is often not enough. To better experience the magnitude and diversity of this natural living underwater wonder, purchase a 3 Day Ultimate Reef Pass, which allows you to choose and experience three different reef adventures.
- Treat yourself to a sunset cruise. Relax and unwind over the Coral Sea and take in the spectacular sunset as you enjoy a glass of wine or beer.
2. Visit the nearby tropical islands
Port Douglas is in close proximity to beautiful, unspoiled tropical islands. Two must-see islands are Low Isles and Green Island.
- Board a luxury catamaran to Low Isles, an idyllic coral cay island, in the Great Barrier Reef. As daily visitor numbers are limited, you will enjoy a quiet and intimate experience with nature; relax on the beach, take a guided walk or go on a snorkelling tour, then enjoy a delicious tropical lunch buffet.
- Visit Green Island and Low Isles, as well as outer regions of the reef, with a 3 Day Ultimate Reef Pass.
3. Visit the nearby World Heritage rainforests
- Take a guided tour through Cape Tribulation or a walking tour through the Daintree Rainforest. Explore where the Daintree rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef. You will love the wet tropics, primitive animals and gorges in these World Heritage listed rainforests!
- To fully immerse yourself in nature, join an overnight tour of the World Heritage listed rainforest, Cape Tribulation.
- Experience the natural beauty of this mountaintop rainforest and visit its traditional markets, as well as other attractions on a Kuranda day tour.
- Visit the Rainforest Nature Park in Cairns. Get up, close and personal with the native wildlife and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature.
4. Take in some culture
- Learn about Aboriginal culture by visiting the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. You will be able to engage in interactive activities, see theatrical performances and obtain and deeper understanding towards the culture and traditions of these people.
- Give yourself the Australian Muster Experience. Enjoy the beautiful scenery on horseback or try out some of the fun activities that include some exciting adventure rides. Immerse yourself in the spirit of the outback.
- Try the Flames of the Forest experiences for an unforgettable evening. The rainforest at night is a magical place and this creates the perfect setting to learn of Aboriginal traditions and to indulge in some exquisite Aussie food and wine.
5. Meet the wildlife
- Visit the Wild Life Habitat in Port Douglas. This unforgettable experience will bring you closer to nature and also give you the chance to indulge in some delicious local breakfast or lunch, depending on the time of your visit.
- Visit the Australian butterfly sanctuary. Explore the largest butterfly flight aviary in Australia. You will come across over 1500 tropical butterflies and enjoy this unique, colourful experience.
6. Go extreme
If you enjoy extreme sports then Port Douglas has a few activities that will complete your trip. Bungy jumping, rainforest surfing and white water rafting are simply the tip of the iceberg.
- Jump from a 50 metre tower in the midst of 7 acres of unique rainforest land. Choose from 16 different jump styles when you bungee jump in the adventure capital of Australia, Cairns.
- If you are looking for an adrenaline rush, try out White Water Rafting. Get your heart pumping faster as you enjoy this thrilling ride that will take you through some beautiful scenery as well.
- Explore the Daintree Rainforest by jungle canopy surfing. This is a great adventure that can be experienced by the entire family and flying through a rainforest is one experience that is unforgettable.
7. See the scenery from the sky
- Take a scenic helicopter flight and enjoy views of Port Douglas and its surrounding natural attractions from above. Take a 20-minute ride over Mossman Gorge, a 30-minute ride over waterfalls and Low Isles, or get dropped off on a secluded tropical island!
- Take in the spectacular views with a Hot Air Balloon ride. Enjoy a typical Aussie breakfast before taking off into the sky to enjoy a birds eye view of Port Douglas.
8. Take a scenic ride through Kuranda
- Enjoy panoramic views this lush mountaintop rainforest, as well as of the Coral Sea, by gliding above it on a Skyrail Rainforest Cableway ride.
- Starting at the top at the historical Kuranda Railway Station, make your way down the mountain, enjoying views of waterfalls, the rainforest and the sea on a Kuranda Scenic Railway train ride.