An exclusive Port Douglas accommodation destination, the Far North Queensland Resort is ideally positioned, nestled between two World Heritage listed sites, the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. It is situated on the northernmost peninsula of a 2km stretch of protected, pristine, and untouched coastline. The ambience here offers a heavenly retreat where time seems to stand still and the views are panoramic. Traveling here and staying at the Far North Queensland Resort, you will be enthralled by nature and likely embark on excursions of the Far North Queensland coast from Double Island to Cape Tribulation, and from the sparkling waters of the Great Barrier Reef to the World Heritage Forests that cover the coastal ranges of the resort.
Sited where World Heritage Rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef, a tropical landscape caresses the resort’s private beach frontage providing a natural setting for travelers to unwind in nature while still being within easy access of The Great Barrier Reef, Cairns, Port Douglas and the Daintree Rainforest. The Far North Queensland Resort is complemented by the backdrop of the ocean road from Cairns with the dramatic rainforest mountains to one side and the sparkling Coral Sea to other, as you head towards Port Douglas and the resort’s private reserve.
Turning into the 145 acres of private reserve grounds, the driveway weaves through a coconut plantation and past the private bungalows set discreetly in tropical gardens until you arrive at the impressive main building and the reception area at the Far North Queensland Resort.
There are four different accommodation options at the Far North Queensland Resort, these are Jungle Walk Bungalows, Eucalypt Bungalows, Coral Sea Bungalows, and The Sandpiper Suite, which is the resort’s premium accommodation.
Conservation and sustainability is a top priority for the resort and guests are encouraged to tread softly and appreciate the local environment.
The resort contains some unique habitats ranging from rainforest, open woodlands, mangrove forest, grasslands, regrowth areas, a rich coastal marine environment and the coconut plantation, all surrounded in world heritage forest.
The hotel itself is situated amongst a natural stand of Eucalyptus forest/dry woodland forest. The dominant species through this forest are the Eucalyptus platyphylla (commonly called Poplar Gums). The lodge is locally famous for its fine display of these beautiful eucalypts. Sugar Gliders and Striped possums are frequently seen feeding as they move through these trees and roust in the tree hollows during the day.
Dry rainforest or vine thicket forest, as it’s sometimes described, verges the mangroves and sand dune systems. Rich in ground ferns tall canopy trees and vines this type of forest is rare on the coast these days. It contains many mixed species of plant life, some of which are very rare and endangered. This is an area you may come across bird life not often seen in other parts of the property. Orange footed scrub fowl nest here in large mounds of composting vegetation and have done so for many generations. A path makes its way gently through this forest continuing on to other habitats as it continues its circuit.
Behind the sand dunes of oak beach stretching to the southern end of the beach is a system of mangroves containing tidal creeks and lagoons with a rich array of salt resistant mangrove plants. Some of these areas are easily accessed and our guides would be happy to enlighten you on these biologically rich tidal forests.
Grassland and regrowth areas are areas sugar once thrived, now pioneer trees and a mix of grasses dominate making it perfect habitat for grazing wallabies.
The resort is located amongst an abundance of wildlife. During your experience you may be lucky enough to spot some of these unique animals in their natural existence.
Sparse or rare in Australia the Striped Possum can be spotted at the resort's reserve if you are lucky – recognisable by the black and white striping running the length of its body. There are four species of striped possum, three found in New Guinea and one in Australia. Sleeping during the day in a leaf lined nest in a tree hole – it emerges during the night to leap through the forest canopy and feed on wood boring insect larvae. Very little is known about the reproductive biology of this elusive marsupial.
Typically 285 – 400 mm the Musky Rat Kangaroo is the smallest of the macropod family. It sleeps at night in a nest of vegetation and forages by daylight hours on the forest floor for fruit and insects. It is only found in a limited area in North Queensland and lives a solitary existence.
Another unique Australian spotted at the resort is the Red Eyed Green Tree frog. Strikingly coloured with a green back, deep yellow underside and a pair of bright orange irises it is easily recognisable. Growing to a length of 65 mm and mainly spotted in wet coastal rainforest the males are mainly heard calling from October to February – during and after heavy rain.
A common visitor to the locale is the Australian Brush Turkey. Typically 60-70cm in length and is easily identified by its yellow wattle hanging under its neck. The Brush Turkey is a common sight in North Queensland and it is normally spotted in forests and dense vegetation. The brush turkey incubates its eggs in a large mound of leaf and vegetable matter – which is constructed by the male of the species.
Often heard before it is seen – the Laughing Kookaburra emits a boisterous ‘laughing’ call. It is the largest of the kingfisher family and has a large bill that it sometimes uses to tackle small reptiles.
“I have been birding for 30 years and this is the best area in Australia,” says David, our bird and butterfly expert. “In the whole of Australia there are some 750 species and up here we have over 400. This is because of the different habitats and climates we have. Rainforest, open forest, dry country, swamps, mountains and the sea all next to each other!”
You will be thrilled at the colour and variety of species to be found at the resort. An early start to hear the first chorus of birds in full song is a wonderful way to welcome a new day.
In the early 1970’s Rob & Oonagh Prettejohn purchased the 145 acre Peninsula. At the time the resort only had 45 acres of the original forest. The balance of 100 acres had been cleared and was a degraded, unsustainable sugar cane plantation. Environmental sensitivities were not as they are today and planning approval at the time would have allowed for a 700 bedroom hotel to be built! Fortunately as locals with a feel for a low impact on this wonderful environment, this was not their style. They planted many thousands of indigenous plants to rehabilitate the area and start its return back to a wild natural state. The lodge is built out of natural sustainable materials in a low impact style that does not set out to dominate the surrounding landscape.
The resort is proudly supporting the environmental charity the Australian Rainforest Foundation. The Australian Rainforest Foundation (ARF) is an incorporated not-for-profit organisation dedicated to education, research and habitat rehabilitation for Australia’s rainforests.
The ARF builds global awareness and support for Australia’s rainforests by funding enhancement programs made possible through investment, sponsorship and donations from corporate and private citizens.
Although endorsed and supported by the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments the ARF believes that Australia’s Rainforests can not survive without the help of ‘every day’ citizens from Australia and around the world.
Contribution to Conservation
The resort is a beacon of hope as mankind progresses from being the demolisher to the conserver and now to the environmental benefactor. Over a period of 30 years, owners Rob and Oonagh Prettejohn have shepherded the re-establishment of complex forests on land that was once cleared and devastated by extractive farming. With the return of the forests, wildlife populations have exploded bringing their pulsating natural energy.
Rob and Oonagh employ wildlife specialists who are on hand to guide guests in the forests, the beaches or along the rocky headlands. This is done in a personalised quiet and unregimented fashion. Complimentary tours are designed so guests can enjoy the thrill of making their very own discoveries. They might see rare snub-finned Dolphins, followed soon afterwards by a resident Osprey diving for fish to feed her chicks. Then delicately treading along sandy paths through the magnificent rainforest with its many species of tropical birds and butterflies. Guests are encouraged to add new sightings to the growing lists recorded. The resort has many permanent guests. They are recognizable by their wild temperament and generous covering of fur, feathers or scales. They are constantly surprising and delighting the transient humans. At night there is an observatory where guests are taken time travelling to the far reaches of The Milky Way.
Working with Local Communities
Recognising the importance of the spirit of our local indigenous communities the resort invites the elders of the KuKu – Yalanji community to take our guests through the journey of their culture. From healing plants to bush food the elders bring in leaves and seeds for guests to handle and learn their history and importance to the survival of this wonderful community. Musical instruments so important to the rites and rituals of the ancient peoples of this ancient land are a part of the resort’s experience. At the lodge, we always grateful to the KuKu-Yalanji elders for their eagerness in sharing their ancient knowledge.
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Daintree National Park: AUSTRALIA
Locale: Rainforest. Great Barrier Reef
Daintree, North Queensland: AUSTRALIA
Bedroom(s): 15 (Villas)
Locale: Daintree Rainforest. Great Barrier Reef
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