Port Douglas and Surrounds from the Air
If you want to see Port Douglas and surrounds from the air there are several options open to you.
GBR and Sky Safari offer Helicopter flights along 4 Mile Beach, to the Great Barrier Reef, over rainforests and to the outback. The flights vary in length from 30 minutes to 4 hours and offer spectacular views of the coastline and reefs, ranges and rainforests and the outback.
For the more adventurous, Port Douglas Microlights and Updraught offer two other flight options. Microlight aircrafts and Hanggliders are often seen overhead in Port Douglas and off Rex Lookout just south of Port Douglas. These flights offer open cockpit flying over the Coral Sea, the Daintree River and Cape Tribulation.
Adrenalin Water Sports also offer a birds eye view of 4 Mile Beach. Parasailing is available over the water along 4 Mile Beach and involves being towed by a boat whilst floating in the air attached to a parachute. It is a gentler, less frenetic way to take in the view.
SKYRAIL – Perhaps one of the most popular aerial views of the Daintree rainforest is from Skyrail cable car. The cable car begins just north of Cairns at Carivonica Station and travels 7.5 kilometres across the range to Kuranda. The journey takes around 1.5 hour with a stop at Red Peak station where you can take a 175 metre guided walk with a ranger. The second stop at Barron Falls station offers access to three viewing platforms with stunning views of the Barron Gorge and the 260 metre Barron Falls.
The final stop is at Kuranda the “Village in the Rainforest.” The town has many tourist attractions , cafes, markets and art galleries. If you wish to escape the tourist trail, there is a 3km rainforest walk through Jumrum Creek along the banks of the Barron River to the Kuranda Railway Station.
The return journey can be made via the cableway or train. The construction of the 37 kilometre railway to Kuranda commenced in 1886 as a supply route to the gold fields and took 5 years to complete. It was a feat of engineering perched precariously on the mountainside. In places, the track is laid in dense forest, through swamp land and over deep ravines. The Kuranda Scenic Railway runs twice daily across the range from Freshwater Station at 8.50 am and 9.50 am and returns at 2.00 and 3.30 pm. The journey is approximately two hours in duration.
Visit www.skyrail.com.au for further information.
BALLOONING AND SKYDIVING
If you are up for an early morning balloon flight, just south west of Port Douglas, several balloon companies operate in the Mareeba area. Watch the sun rise over the range and view the rich agricultural land surrounding Mareeba township.
Skydive Cairns operates a JUMP THE BEACH tandem jump from 14,000 feet and solo jump training. The flight offers spectacular views taking in sites over the Great Barrier Reef , the rainforest and the landing on the beach.