Exploring the Daintree RainforestAs the only place in the world where two World Heritage listed sites co-exist, Port Douglas is not only beautiful, but also a haven for reef and rainforest adventures to suit every type of traveller and taste. Here are five must-try tips for your next visit to the tropical paradise that locals affectionately call “Port”.
Daintree River Cruise
The Daintree River, approximately 50 kilometres north of Port Douglas, is one of the world’s most diverse river eco systems and rated one of the most fascinating World Heritage listed sites on the planet (as part of the Daintree Rainforest).
There are many operators who cruise the mighty Daintree but if you want an authentic experience, Dan Kirby (the barefoot bushman), is your man. With a smaller launch than other charters, Dan can take you deeper into the river and closer to its banks where resident crocodiles – some growing as big as four metres – like to bask. He also operates a service to see the river on sunset and, if you are really brave, nightfall, when the wildlife likes to feed. Expect to see saltwater crocs, frogs, snakes, butterflies and birds in their own stunning natural habitat while Dan explains the history of this vibrant river eco-system.
Flames in the Forest
Be taken deep into the rainforest, where an open-air ballroom awaits complete with candle lit surrounds, chandeliers and welcome champagne. Feast on a sumptuous banquet of fresh local produce, sip wine and listen to dreamtime stories and the haunting sounds of the didgeridoo played by local indigenous artists.
And if that does not sound enticing enough, share your meals with others at beautifully styled communal tables, try kangaroo and bush tucker fruits, and be picked up and delivered right to the door of your hotel in a courtesy bus.
This award winning dining experience is considered a highlight of the Tropical North dining scene and fuses exceptional food and performances in a breathtaking private outdoor amphitheatre.
Wujul Wujul with the Walker Family
For a unique experience focusing on the ancient traditions, heritage and culture of the Kuku Yalanji people, join the Walker family who have called the Daintree Rainforest home for tens of thousands of years. Wujal Wujal is a small Aboriginal community and their lands encompass the spectacular Bloomfield falls (of which they are named after) near Mossman.
Join a trek to the falls via the rainforest track where plants, animals and birds will be identified and unique bush tucker and medicinal foods explained. From using tree bark as a tranquiliser to stun fish in a billabong, to the super vitamin c hit you can get from licking a green ant’s bottom – this tour will fascinate, educate and enchant as the gentle and passionate Walker family proudly show you around their home.http://www.adventurenorthaustralia.com
Daintree Ice Cream Factory
A great drive that the whole family will love is a trip to the Daintree Ice Cream Factory. Head north from Port Douglas to the Daintree River Ferry crossing where the kids will love crossing the mighty Daintree river by car. Another 14 kilometres drive north through pristine rainforest you will find tropical ice cream heaven. Home grown and home made, all ice cream is blended onsite from the tropical fruit grown in the family orchard. Flavours include a tropical North Queensland selection of regular favourites like banana, lychee, mango and mulberry, but also an exotic selection with lessor known varieties, including soursop, mangosteen, yellow sapote, rollinia, sapodilla, jackfruit, malay apple, mamey sapote, breadfruit, and davidson plum, just to name a few.Wander through the tropical fruit orchard and plant nursery, pick up a souvenir gift, or just take your time considering the flavours. A special four taste cup is available for those that find it impossible to choose just one.