Do I need a car in Port Douglas?

Aug 8th, 2003, 12:47 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 17
Do I need a car in Port Douglas?

We will be at the raddison in port douglas in November for 6 days. I dont really want to rent a car - can I make do without it? we want to be beach bums for a while, take some GBR trips and maybe a rainforest trip. can I get by without one?

Also - I have heard that you can do "resort dives" if you are not a scuba diver. Is this true? If not, do I have time to take lessons prior to our trip?
Ilsa is offline  
Aug 8th, 2003, 03:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 107
YOu do not need a car. Most of the daytrips will provide transportation to and from. Also, airport transports are not that expensive and each night you can walk to dinners or jump on the shuttle provided around town.

For tour recommendations see my trip report entitled Trip Report - Part 2 Port Douglas.

Sorry - can't answer about the resort dives but if it interests you I would get certified before going on your trip!
and enjoy the GBR with experience under your belt.
DawnF is offline  
Aug 9th, 2003, 12:09 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,313
We stayed at the Raddison Port Douglas a few weeks ago and you do not need a car but I would probably recommend having one, especially if there are two or more of you. Walking into Port Douglas for dinners from the Radisson is not a great option unless you really like to do alot of walking. Shuttles add up cost over time as well as transportation to/from Cairns airport. Daytrips are also rather expensive and many such as Kuranda you can do easily by yourself with a car. I find that a car offers alot of freedom to do what you want when you want. I suspect the cost of having a car or using shuttles etc may be pretty close, especially if there are two or more of you.
The beach at the Raddison is about a 5 to 10 minute walk so that should not be a problem.
There are resort dives available but you will enjoy it more I think if you were certified before so you could dive apart from the novices and be more comfortable underwater so you could enjoy the reef instead of worrying about what you are doing.
mjs is offline  
Aug 10th, 2003, 11:43 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 54
My husband certified scuba a few weekends before we left for our trip and was very thankful he did. He had only done his certification dives before we left the states, so his first real dives were on the GBR which was an experience of a lifetime. If you can swing it save yourself the time while you are away to enjoy other things or diving rather than the hours of intruction you will need if you do it there.
elz1 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2003, 08:00 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 96
With the resort dives you get about 30 mins induction on the trip out to the Reef. An instructor will take you down in a small group and keep an eye on you.
mpoll is offline  
Aug 11th, 2003, 04:27 PM
Posts: n/a
Ilsa, you don't need a car in Port Douglas, the area is quite flat and you can walk.There a shuttle buses evry half an hour everyone in port Douglas.
Take my advice and do a Reef Trip to the outer reef and a Daintree/Bloomfield Falls trip, your Tour Desk will help you.We booked direct and had no problems.Let me know if you need more information.
Aug 14th, 2003, 10:23 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 17
Thanks for all the advice. Its just my husband I and since we are pretty adapt to walking and I dont mind the extra exercise - so we will probably skip the rental car. I dont know what we will do about the scuba diving certification issue. Jane - I will do those trips, thanks for the advice.
Ilsa is offline  
Aug 15th, 2003, 07:56 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 747
I did the "resort" dives with one of the smaller boats, and enjoyed it. I wouldn't want to do it in the crowd on Quicksilver or one of the other monster boats. The big boats have their place; they offer a lot more room to walk around, and the anchored platforms and glass-bottom boats give people who are uncomfortable snorkeling a chance to see the reef.
I enjoyed diving and snorkeling about equally; while it is nice to be able to head down and look at things more closely when diving, the colors fade out rapidly as you get deeper (and the light is filtered by more water).

I would agree you can easily get by without a car (and at the same time that it can be handy to have).
curmudgeon is offline  

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