Things to do in
Port Douglas

From 5-star resorts, tropical rainforests, and the Great Barrier Reef, there’s something for everyone here.

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Our most recommended things to do in Port Douglas

Daintree, Mossman Gorge & Cape Trib Tour with Cruise & Lunch

1. Daintree, Mossman Gorge & Cape Trib Tour with Cruise & Lunch

Start your adventure with a scenic coastal drive from Cairns to Port Douglas, the far north’s very own great ocean road with panoramic views of the sparkling Coral Sea. The first stop is Mossman Gorge, which is in the southern sector of the world-famous Daintree National Park. The gorge has been carved out by the cold mountain waters of the Mossman River, which winds through large granite boulders, bordered by lush green rainforest. It’s a magical place and you’ll be welcomed by the traditional owners, the Kuku Yalanji people, who will also cleanse you of evil spirits during a smoke ceremony. Also, enjoy a refreshing swim in the cascading waters. Cross the mighty Daintree River and head to the beach for lunch. Experience waterfront dining and enjoy the sand between your toes. After lunch, it’s time to explore the ancient rainforest environment on an interesting guided tour of the Marrdja Botanical Boardwalk. Highly trained guides will give expert rainforest interpretation, which will inform and impress. Be amazed at the huge diversity you will encounter, you will discover everything from low-lying ferns and shrubs, to the massive rainforest canopy and even mangrove ecosystems - all in one short easy walk. You can choose to taste locally made ice cream, at your own cost, and prepare for a photo opportunity at the Alexandra Range Lookout, which provides sweeping views over the Daintree River, its rainforest delta, and out to the Coral Sea. In the afternoon, experience a wildlife cruise on the river. During the cruise, you may see a crocodile, while learning about the fragile ecosystem of this impressive serpent-like river system. On the return journey to Cairns, drive through Port Douglas, a picturesque beachside village with a laid-back vibe and loads of bars and cafes.

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Port Douglas: Low Isles Snorkel Tour

2. Port Douglas: Low Isles Snorkel Tour

Join a snorkelling experience in the water around a beautiful, secluded island. Enjoy some time aboard a comfortable and spacious vessel as you travel to the Low Isles with only 23 guests. Relax with plenty of space onboard during the journey and enjoy a light refreshment as you spot the Low Isles in the distance. Spend a few hours snorkelling and exploring a picturesque coral bay. Snorkel in the calm lagoon or view the reef from the glass bottom boat. The crew will provide tours for guests to learn and appreciate the incredible Great Barrier Reef. Access to the reef is very easy, either from the back of the vessel or from the beach as the reef hugs close to the island. Explore the coral reef and its inhabitants without the crowds. Walk through the sandy paths and through the vegetation. See first hand the historical lighthouse, the lighthouse keeper's home and the Weather Station where local weather data is collected. 

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Port Douglas: Sunset Sailing Cruise on Luxury Catamaran

3. Port Douglas: Sunset Sailing Cruise on Luxury Catamaran

Check-in at the Sailaway office at the marina at 4:30 PM for a 5:00 PM departure. Climb aboard a luxury catamaran for a 1.5-hour evening cruise. Depart from the marina and feel the wind in your hair as the spectacular vessel moves smoothly and comfortably across the ocean. Receive a complimentary glass of beer, wine, or champagne. Savor a delicious selection of freshly prepared hot and cold canapes. Relax and unwind whilst enjoying the fantastic views of the coral sea and Daintree coastline. Enjoy pure sailing, great music, ambiance, and first-class service. After the sunset cruise, return to the marina at 6:30 PM.

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Quicksilver Outer Barrier Reef Full-Day Cruise

4. Quicksilver Outer Barrier Reef Full-Day Cruise

Climb aboard a Quicksilver catamaran for a full-day cruise to Australia’s renowned Agincourt Reef, a jewel-like ribbon reef on the edge of the Continental Shelf. Showcasing unsurpassed coral formations, colorful marine life and exceptional underwater visibility, you can snorkel or view the sights from the comfort of a semi-submersible. The Quicksilver's stylish wave piercing catamaran transports you in air-conditioned comfort. From the spacious activity platform, moored in a protected lagoon, enjoy the widest range of activities for swimmers and non-swimmers alike. Friendly and attentive crew, including professional marine biologists, are on hand to ensure you gain the most from your day. Snorkel among the coral gardens, or stay dry and explore the reef from the comfort of a semi-submersible. Enjoy an informative reef commentary and see the reef from an underwater observatory. Add on exciting optional activities for a complete adventure. Get an introductory dive of the reef, or enjoy certified diving, helmet diving and marine biologist-guided snorkel tours. You can even take a scenic helicopter flight and fly over the reef to see it from another perspective.

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Port Douglas: River Drift Snorkelling Tour in the Daintree

5. Port Douglas: River Drift Snorkelling Tour in the Daintree

Benefit from a complimentary pickup from your Port Douglas or Mossman accommodation. Arrive at the Daintree Rainforest's Mossman River after a short drive north through historic sugar cane fields. Get fitted out with a wetsuit, boots, and a snorkel mask with the help of your river-trained guide. Step into the cool, crystal clear water and drift with the current as you explore life under the water’s surface. Watch fish dart in and around the river stones and keep your eyes out for the occasional turtle. Try to spot the elusive platypus that calls this river home. Try to spot lizards, butterflies, and rainforest birds on this river adventure. Enjoy an unforgettable time drifting under the rainforest canopy. Arrive back at your accommodation after a short drive back south.

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Daintree & Cape Tribulation Small Group 4WD Tour

6. Daintree & Cape Tribulation Small Group 4WD Tour

Explore Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation on a small group tour. Ride a 4WD vehicle as you spot wildlife, catch incredible views, and try regional food along the way. After being picked up in a 4WD around 7:00 AM, make your way north along the Captain Cook Highway. Stop first at the Daintree Cruise Centre for a cup of coffee and biscuits before setting out to explore the Daintree River on a 1-hour guided cruise. During your cruise, you may spot estuarine crocodiles, from youngsters to massive 4-meter adults. Learn about the birds and wildlife that make this area their home. Then, make your way to the Alexandra Range Lookout, located in the heart of the rainforest, to enjoy spectacular views of the rainforest, the ocean, its surrounding reefs, and the majestic Daintree River. At the Jindalba boardwalk, you'll go on an informative 45-minute guided tour to experience the Park's beauty up close. See ancient 900-year-old palms, and keep your eyes peeled for the elusive Boyd’s Forest Dragon. Enjoy lunch at Lync Haven, an animal refuge, where you'll be treated to BBQ lunch steaks and tasty garden fresh salads, fish, or a vegetarian burger. After lunch, have a look at some of the animals here which include different species of python snakes and Boris the Estuarine Crocodile. You can even hand-feed some of the Kangaroos in care — an amazing experience. Your journey continues, heading further north to Emmagen for an afternoon tea stop. You’ll have ample time to enjoy a beautifully refreshing swim in this amazing freshwater mountain stream. Then, indulge in a feast of exotic tropical fruits and enjoy a sample cup of traditional Billy Tea, made in a traditional Australian Billy (by your guide) and damper, all of which enhance the tranquil surroundings. Head to Cape Tribulation beach itself for a leisurely stroll along the beach to admire the views. Those feeling a little more energetic can take the short botanical boardwalk to the Cape Tribulation beach lookout. After Cape Tribulation beach, if there's time, stop at Daintree’s hidden secret, the Daintree ice creamery. Your taste buds will be tantalized with exotic tropical fruit homemade ice cream. As the day comes to the end, head back toward Cairns. You will be dropped off at your accommodations at around 6:30 PM.

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Port Douglas: Low Isles Afternoon Cruise on Luxury Catamaran

7. Port Douglas: Low Isles Afternoon Cruise on Luxury Catamaran

Embark on an afternoon departure on the luxury "Sailaway" catamaran. Upon arrival, delight in freshly-brewed Tropical North Queensland tea or Jaques coffee with a light lunch. Take off for a leisurely 15-kilometer journey to the Low Isles. After some slow and smooth cruising, Sailaway will moor in the sheltered blue lagoon for 3 hours. The crew will set you up with complimentary snorkeling equipment and optical masks (and seasonal lycra snorkeling suits or wetsuits and flotation devices if required). Relax on the island, join the guided snorkel tour lead by a marine naturalist, take a trip on the glass-bottom boat and join the guided heritage walk. The marine biologist will provide in-depth information about the reef and its colorful inhabitants. Cure your curiosity - there will be plenty of opportunities to ask questions. Afterward, enjoy afternoon tea and coffee with fresh homemade scones and a fruit platter. Then, enjoy a delicious selection of canapés with a glass of wine, beer, or soft drink in hand as you admire the sunset over the Coral Sea. The spectacular sunset sail back to port will showcase beautiful views of the Daintree mountains. End the tour back at the Marina at 6:30 PM and continue your evening in beautiful Port Douglas.

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Daintree Rainforest, Cape Tribulation, & Mossman Gorge Tour

8. Daintree Rainforest, Cape Tribulation, & Mossman Gorge Tour

Get picked up at your hotel and stop at the renowned Mossman Gorge, the first sight on your Daintree Forest tour. Embark on a guided walk and then hop aboard a river cruise on the Daintree River, home to the elusive estuarine crocodile. Observe stunning native and migratory bird life, butterflies, and breathtaking scenery. Cross the Daintree River, journey to Alexandra Lookout, and enjoy sweeping views extending from the Daintree River Estuary to the Coral Sea. Stop for morning tea under the canopy of this prehistoric rainforest. Have some muffin biscuits, coffee, Daintree Tea, and water.  Continue on to Cape Tribulation, with a stop at Kulki Lookout for unparalleled views of the rainforest and beach. Stop at Noah Valley, a World Heritage private property that plays host to some of the most spectacular, pristine rainforest found anywhere in the world. Take a stroll along The Gateway to Paradise and see one of the most primitive flowering plants still in existence. Enjoy a refreshing swim in the crystal-clear rainforest stream while your barbecue lunch is prepared in a private retreat surrounded by rainforest. Savor a lunch of steak, fish, and sausage, served with salads and a warm damper (Australian-style bread) followed by a tropical fruit platter. Follow lunch with an interpretive guided rainforest walk through the heart of the Daintree rainforest. Discover how all living parts of the Daintree Rainforest depend on each other for survival. Conclude the tour with a visit to Daintree Ice Cream Company.

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Cairns: Shared Airport Transfer to/from City and Beaches

9. Cairns: Shared Airport Transfer to/from City and Beaches

Arrive at Cairns Airport and be greeted by a friendly uniformed airport concierge or driver. Be guided to your waiting transport, where your driver will check your name and destination. Enjoy a welcome onboard and receive helpful information from your driver. Sit back and relax as you enjoy your journey to your hotel. Expect a journey time of 20 minutes to Cairns CBD and 25 minutes for Palm Cove hotels. For Port Douglas, drive for 1 hour and 15 minutes along the picturesque Great Barrier Reef Drive. At the end of your stay, take a transfer from your hotel to the airport. Feel calm and relaxed in the knowledge that you will arrive on time to meet your departing flight from Cairns International Airport.

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Cape Tribulation Ocean Safari Tour

10. Cape Tribulation Ocean Safari Tour

An exhilarating ride to snorkel the pristine untouched Great Barrier Reef off the Daintree Coast at Cape Tribulation. This half-day eco-tour visits two different snorkel destinations, each with an extraordinary array of marine life and coral species. The tour begins at Cape Tribulation beach where guests board the vessel bound for the tropical waters of the Great Barrier Reef. The Ocean Safari vessel takes a maximum of 25 passengers allowing guests to experience tropical paradise and the pleasure of a small group. After a fast 25-minute ride, guests are ready to snorkel two fabulous locations at Mackay and Undine Reefs. On most days, the rainforest can be seen along the mainland beach whilst snorkelling the Great Barrier Reef alongside sea turtles, which are found in abundance swimming over reefs full of colourful coral, along with myriads of tropical fish, eagle rays, giant clams, and starfish. The vessel is based on the original design of a rescue craft and is a rigid inflatable boat driven by 700hp engines. The experienced Skipper and Eco Host ensure the trip is filled with fun and appreciation of the Great Barrier Reef and the coastal rainforest of the Daintree, two world heritage areas side by side. Magical memories like these sometimes only happen once in a lifetime.

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What people are saying about Port Douglas

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 1,819 reviews

This is a great experience for all ages. We did this same tour last year and as we were back at Port Douglas again, we know we wanted to do it again. The pilot is also the tour guide and he was very knowledgeable. Told us lots about the reef including coral, fish and the rest of the marine life. We had a great time snorkelling at our leisure.

This is my second d time on this trip and it didn’t disappoint. Great food, friendly staff including very informative marine biologist and lovely comfortable boat. The island is a mini paradise with so much sea life including turtles, sharks and loads of fish. Great day out, would definitely recommend!

Absolutely Epic! If you don’t love to be out in the sun all day long then this half day is awesome. The crew were full of humour & great to see the reef so alive!! Turtles, little sharks & tones of tropical fish. Loved it!!

Professional staff with a good sense of humour. Lots of fun and laughs while flying high above the cloud topped mountains. Beautiful!

Have morning coffee before you hop in. It’s a great trip but bring lots of snacks.