February 8th, 2011
Once again, Port Douglas emerged unscathed from a tropical cyclone. The only sign of the high winds which we experienced was a carpet of leaves, twigs and branches, plus an occasional tree on the way in to Port Douglas. Here at The White House, I think I could have built a new tree from the leaves in the swimming pool! But they’re all gone now and the pool is sparkling again.
Our thoughts are with the people 220 km away who felt the full force of the cyclone and lost homes and memories. I can’t begin to imagine the courage it would take to start all over again.
January 27th, 2011
While southern media outlets are reporting about the impact of turbid floodwaters on the Great Barrier Reef, locals and tourists to Port Douglas are experiencing the best underwater visibility ever seen, according to the local paper, Port Douglas and Mossman Gazette.
Claims of a possible explosion of algal blooms appear unfounded, with visibility of up to 20 metres recorded at Agincourt Reef in the past few weeks.
In fact, Port Douglas has been having terrific weather lately, with many tourists shaking their heads and saying “what wet season??”
Even if it does rain, that’s the best time to see the rainforest – the sounds and smells are amplified and it’s a magical experience.
January 10th, 2011
We stayed at the White House apartments for just 4 days and wish it could have been for longer. This is a charming, colonial-style building minutes from the spectacular 4-Mile Beach, and less than 10 mins walk from the main area of Port Douglas.
January 5th, 2011
Some White House guests went snorkelling today and have just walked in with smiles from ear to ear! Their comments were along the lines of “awesome”, “spectactular” and “best day ever” so I suppose they enjoyed it …
Last week I went out for the first time on Synergy and would be happy to use the same words to describe that experience. The mooring site was wonderful, with some of the best coral I’ve seen for a while and, of course, the usual array of colourful fish. The funniest sight was a small fish (about 15cm) using his fins to brace himself between 2 walls of coral! I think he was trying to stay very still so that I wouldn’t spot him, but it only made me watch him for ages to convince myself that I wasn’t imagining things.
The lunch on Synergy was great, freshly barbecued prawns, fish and chicken, along with delicious salads and breads (even gluten free or dairy free or whatever was necessary for special diets.) There weren’t many people on board, because Synergy takes a maximum of 12 passengers, so it was almost like a family outing by the time we sailed back into the marina.
July 29th, 2010
Migaloo, the white humpback whale, has once again been spotted not far from Port Douglas. He performed some fin-slapping and breaching and stayed on the surface long enough for passengers local reef boat Quicksilver VIII to have a good look. Migaloo has been declared a “whale of a special interest” and boats are not permitted to approach any closer than 500m. Migaloo, who is completely white, usually visits Port Douglas in August, as do many other humpback whales and minke whales.
July 17th, 2010
The latest local news is that scouts from three production companies have visited Port Douglas to investigate the possibility of shooting big budget TV series here, just as it has been announced that Steven Spielberg’s highly successful mini-series “The Pacific” has been nominated for 24 Emmy Awards. “The Pacific” was filmed at Rocky Point, Four Mile Beach and Port Douglas.
One of the new series which may be filmed in the Port Douglas area is another Steven Spielberg production called Terra Nova, which features dinosaurs, so locals and visitors might be in for a few unusual sights in future days!
July 12th, 2010
Minke whales visit Port Douglas
Yesterday, Dr Alastair Birtles, leader of the Dwarf Minke Whale Project of James Cook University, gave a talk on these whales, which are seen on the Great Barrier Reef every year, mainly in the winter months.
Dwarf Minke Whales are an undescribed sub-species and very little is actually known about them. They are known only from the Southern Hemisphere. The only time they have been observed is when they visit the Great Barrier Reef but no-one knows what they do or where they go for the nine months of the year when they’re not here.
The largest Dwarf Minke Whale measured was 7.8m and they can weigh up to 5 or 6 tonnes. This is smaller than the Northern Hemisphere Minke Whale by about 2 m, but still a very large animal to encounter while you’re snorkelling, which can happen here on the Great Barrier Reef!
Encounters with whales have been banned in most countries of the world, but are still allowed here, although only 9 boats have permits and they are strictly regulated. The only way to ban encounters with Dwarf Minke Whales would be to ban all diving and snorkelling during the winter months, because these whales are extremely inquisitive and studies show that they’re probably as interested in observing us as we are in observing them.
An encounter with a Dwarf Minke Whale can last for about two hours, with the animals often coming very close to humans in the water, even as near as 1 metre or less. Fortunately, they have terrific spatial and distance judgement and are totally non-threatening.
July 9th, 2010
I’d been travelling alone the whole East Coast of Australia and White House was the Best place i stayed at. It was lush and green and clean and one minute walk to the beach and main street of Port Douglas… best location you could want. The building itself is gorgeous and fits in with the tropical landscape perfectly. Margaret was fantastic and the whole experience was simply perfect. Highly recommend it.
June 1st, 2010
Make sure you book your Port Douglas tours and activites through White House Tour Desk to get the latest special deals.
May 31st, 2010
The location is one of the best in Port Douglas – Four mile beach across the road from us after you enjoy a beautiful walk through the park. The White House Apartments are in the town centre so you can walk very easily to a great selection of cafes and restaurants as well as the boutique shopping and the main Coles super market.
The Port Douglas apartments are very comfortable and clean. Margaret, the manager, is relaxed, friendly, and professional. I’ve been staying nearly every year for 11 years, tried a few other places, but the White House is best Port Douglas Hotel Accommodation.