There’s something magical about Far North Queensland. From the lush, green rainforest and the fringing red dirt deserts to the vibrant reefs and spectacular beaches, it’s truly unlike anywhere else in the world. And if you want to marvel at its unparalleled natural beauty while still having city comforts (ie. an array of cool places to eat, drink and shop) Port Douglas is the place to stay.
In recent years, the tropical paradise has developed into a bit of a trendy metropolis — filled with upmarket resorts, chic bars and cool shops. It also happens to be home to one of Australia’s best beaches (as voted by TripAdvisor users), Four Mile Beach! So, if your idea of the perfect vacay is soaking up the sun during the day and taking in the nightlife in the eve, add Port Douglas to your travel list, STAT.
Read on for our guide on where to eat, stay, play and shop. Where to eat
No trip to Port Douglas would be complete without a visit to Betty’s. Not only is the cute cafe ridiculously Instagrammable, but they serve up delicious, fresh local produce — including options for vegetarian and vegan options. Word on the street is that the buckwheat pancakes are a must-order!
Check out Betty’s Bohemian Beach Cafe.
If you’re ready to soak up the holiday vibes in style, head to Barbados. The super chic cocktail bar overlooks the Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina. As you laze on a daybed, sipping cocktails in the tropical warmth, you’d be forgiven for thinking you were actually in Barbados!
Check out Barbados Port Douglas.
Where to stay
What we love about QT Hotels is that although they all have the same ultra-modern, boutique vibe, each hotel is influenced by the location. So, although you’ll still find the same quirky room finishings, incredible buffet and cool bars, the QT Port Douglas definitely feels like a tropical resort with its sparkling pool and tropical gardens. You’ll feel so relaxed, we guarantee you won’t want to leave!
Check out QT Port Douglas.
While many people head to Port Douglas for some serious chill time, you can’t go and not check out the incredible natural scenery. And if you ask us, the best place to do just that (away from all the tourists) is the Trinity Bay lookout. Offering one of the best views of the iconic Four Mile Beach, the vantage point can be reached via a short uphill hike.
Port Douglas is arguably most famous for its proximity to the worlds largest reef, The Great Barrier Reef. Whether you snorkel the reefs, go on a boat tour or gawk at its beauty from above via helicopter, this is one unmissable North Queensland experience.
The best place to shop til’ you drop in Port Douglas is undoubtedly Macrossan Street. Located in the heart of town, you’ll find everything from chic fashion boutiques, homeware stores, souvenir shops and Indigenous art shops in this lively shopping strip. Oh, and don’t worry, there’s plenty of great cafes and restaurants to refuel at! Taking a detour at Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast? Check out the area’s best healthy cafes.