Monday, November 26, 2012

Port Douglas

Port Douglas is a tiny town devoted to very high end tourism. It's the most northern town that is a significant gateway to the great barrier reef. After 2 nights in a hostel and three nights on a boat, we though it would be a good break.

Port Douglas Water Front

The town is surrounded by expensive resorts including amenities like golf courses, heli pads, moorage, charter boats, exclusive reef access and pet maori wrasse.

This one's name is Greg.

Located on a peninsula, one side hosts an estuary with mangrove swamps complete with crocodiles and jelly fish (stingers). The other side is 4 mile beach and home to spit ball crabs.

4 mile beach with swimming net

The harbour complete with salt water crocs.

Though the crocs rarely venture around the peninsula to bother the swimmers, they are in the harbour, so don't fall overboard. Even the locals are fearful of falling in, which should tell you something.

Crocodile at the wildlife retreat

Waterfront sign

The stingers, which are also potentially fatal, do make it over to the beach though. Because of that, for the spring and summer months, all swimming is strongly encouraged to stay within the netted area. (That doesn't stop some folks who head out in the open water anyways, some even without stinger suits.)

The most entertaining animal is the spit ball crabs however. Technically called sand bubblers, they sift through sand looking for food creating little balls as they go. The beach is covered in them and they scurry away when you get close.

Spot the crab

All in all, Port Douglas is a lovely little quirky town. If you plan on visiting, bring lots of money and stay at place with a nice pool, especially in the warm months.

Beach Review # 5: 4 mile beach
Rating: 2/5
Best Use: Sun tanning, and in winter, kite surfing.
Cool Stuff: This beach would have received a 0 as any beach with multiple deadly animals can't really be that great (and you could get sharks here too.) But, the crabs were really cool and the water was a balmy 27'C, making it almost worth visiting.

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