Port Douglas is a beautiful tropical town just north of Cairns, though it’s touristy reputation can make it expensive. We’ve gathered a list of free activities and places to see in Port Douglas that are all suitable for kids.
1. Mossman Gorge
Travel 20 minutes to the spectacular freshwater swimming hole that is Mossman Gorge. A great place to visit with kids, Mossman Gorge is surrounded by lush rainforest and a variety of walking tracks to explore the surroundings.
2. Four Mile Beach
Arguably the most popular place in Port Douglas, Four Mile Beach is known for its beautiful sandy shores and blue water. The beach is patrolled year-round by lifeguards, including stinger nets during stinger season. Four Mile Beach is a great safe place to swim and relax.
3. Flagstaff Hill Lookout
Accessible by car, bike or foot, Flagstaff Hill Lookout offers sweeping views of 4 Mile Beach. The best viewing point in Port Douglas is even more spectacular during the hours of sunrise and sunset.
4. Rex Smeal Park
A picturesque park with a large grassy area and palm trees hanging over the water. The park offers beautiful views of the sea and islands beyond, particularly special during hours of sunrise and sunset.
5. Heritage Trail
Grab a walking map from the Port Douglas Tourist Information Centre and embark on a trip back in time as you discover historic landmarks and learn about the town’s rich history. While history may not sound fun for kids, everyone will enjoy a leisurely walk around the stunning, laid-back town of Port Douglas.
Port Douglas boasts a number of reputable fishing spots, including Four Mile Beach, Rex Smeal Park, Shipwreck Wharf, Dickson Inlet, Mowbray River and many more. There is a spot for everyone, with land-based as well as river and estuary fishing.
7. Port Douglas Markets
Every Sunday from 8am-2pm at Market Park, adjoining Anzac Park the Port Douglas Markets are held. A large variety of different stalls means there is truly something for everyone, with arts and crafts, jewellery, fresh produce, food, souvenirs, books, coffee and more!
8. Great Barrier Reef Drive
From Cairns to Cape Tribulation along a magnificent coastline you can experience the beauty and splendour of the Great Barrier Reef Drive. The drive from Cairns to Port Douglas looking out over pristine tropical beaches is truly something special. Stop to get out and have a look or walk on the beach to keep kids entertained.
9. Bump Track
Something for the fit and adventurous, the bump track is a 6km moderately steep trail through the forest. The views of the sea are spectacular and there are many opportunities to see unique wildlife. The track is suitable for walking, mountain bike riding and horse riding; making it ideal for different ages and abilities.
10. Local shops
In Port Douglas there’s a strip of shops which makes for a nice stroll with the family. There’s touristy shops, clothes stores and shops which house carved wooden furniture. Regardless of what you’re interested in, there’ll be something for you to look at and take in the friendly atmosphere.
There’s a variety of parks in Port Douglas which make fantastic locations for picnics or a place to play. Bruno Reidweg Memorial Park, Port Douglas Market Park and Rex Smeal Park all house playgrounds, meaning your little ones have something to entertain them once they finish their lunch and gain some extra energy.
12. The Marina
The Marina is a great place to visit even if you’re not going on a cruise to the Great Barrier Reef. While the view alone is beautiful, a nice walk along the pier and around the paths will freshen up any day. And if you get hungry, there’s always restaurants nearby. Choo Choos in particular has a kids meal with all items priced $10.
13. St Mary’s by the sea church
If you’re looking for something historical in this small town, then St Mary’s by the sea is the way to go. This small, heritage-listed church sits in a gorgeous location surrounded by palm trees, and makes for a lovely attraction.
14. Mossman markets
If you head over to Mossman on a Saturday then you’ll be treated to the Mossman markets. Held every week from 7am to 1pm, these markets sell local produce and handmade items, giving you and the family something new to see each time you visit.
15. Mossman Gorge
Mossman Gorge is widely regarded as one of the best swimming holes in Queensland. Situated in the heart of the rainforest, it’s the perfect place to cool off. You might even see some interesting flora and fauna while you’re there!
16. Janbal Gallery
Janbal Art Gallery is an Aboriginal art gallery run by the Kuku Yalanji people. It gives visitors an accurate representation of Aboriginal culture and art, allowing you to view painted items such as didgeridoos, boomerangs and jewellery.