Planning a Trip to Port Douglas

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Where To Start Planning Your Port Douglas Trip?

Port Douglas is a stunning destination in Far North Queensland, Australia. It’s one of Australia’s very best vacation spots, with great hotels, abundant restaurants and of course, access to the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest.

Visitors to Port Douglas come here to enjoy a tropical climate, the beach, to scuba diving and snorkel, spot local wildlife and enjoy the natural environment. With two national parks colliding here, you can be sure that our natural surroundings should stay unspoiled.

Port Douglas Australia planning a trip
Plan your trip to beautiful Port Douglas with our guide.
Port Douglas at sunset
Sunrise or sunset, Port Douglas shines.

Planning a Trip To Port Douglas

Step one, decide when you can visit Port Douglas. You can visit at any time of year and you can take a trip to the Great Barrier Reef year-round unless the weather is particularly bad, but it would be sensible to not visit in January or February. That’s when we tend to see the worst weather.

That said, if the wet season is your best time to visit, come, it will be nice and quiet! I’ll tell you a bit more about visiting during The Wet further down the page.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. – Lao Tzu

Tropical weather is hot and humid and we can see cyclones in Port Douglas, it’s rare, but it can happen. A tropical storm can bring days of torrential rain, plus flooding and landslides, which in late 2023 closed roads in the region. At the time of writing (February 2024) parts of the Daintree Rainforest and Cape Tribulation are still inaccessible to tourists because of damage to the roads.

Port Douglas Australia planning a trip
Plan your trip to beautiful Port Douglas with our guide.
Port Douglas at sunset
Sunrise or sunset, Port Douglas shines.

How will you be getting to Port Douglas? Most visitors arrive by plane at Cairns International Airport. Port Douglas does not have its own airport, Cairns Airport is closest and it’s about an hour away. Cairns is a very small airport and doesn’t have many international flights, but you can normally fly to Cairns from Singapore, Japan and Bali, plus all of the Australian airports, of course.

You can of course drive to Port Douglas or there is a train (or bus) to Cairns, from there you’ll need the section below.

Under rare conditions there are boats from Cairns to Port Douglas, for instance during the road closures in December 2023 / January 2024. This isn’t normal. The road is now open.

Planning How To Get To Port Doulas From Cairns?

There’s not much by way of public transport in Far North Queensland, but there are shuttle buses and various services that will get you to Port Douglas from Cairns.

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Alyson Long

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