News and updates about Port Douglas, Cairns, The Great Barrier Reef, North Queensland and Thala Beach Nature Reserve. Share our News on social media and don’t forget to use the #thalabeach hashtag!

Q & A with Head Chef Luukas Trautner

By Fiona Harper| December 2, 2014|

Recently appointed as Head Chef at Osprey’s Restaurant overlooking the Coral Sea, Luukas Trautner feels right at home in Tropical North Queensland. Born and raised in the island paradise of the Seychelles, Luukas’ passion for tasting and creating food that is unique and fresh developed from a young age. Graduating from his apprenticeship in Amberg Germany clutching a prestigious Young Chef award, Luukas was soon propelled into the elite kitchens of Europe’s finest restaurants. The Michelin Red Guide has set

Win two nights at Thala Beach!

By Fiona Harper| November 13, 2014|

Thala Beach Nature Reserve is one of Tropical North Queensland's finest eco rereats: win two free nights in a Eucalypt Bungalow! Here’s how to enter: Step 1 Follow us on Pinterest or Instagram. Then upload your photo to your account and hashtag #thalabeach OR Like us on Facebook. Then post your photo to your profile, hashtag #thalabeach and tag us @Thala Beach Lodge Step 2 Email your contact details and photo to [email protected] The competition closes on 28/2/2015 … Good

Port Douglas in Top 10 Holiday Destinations

By Fiona Harper| October 28, 2014|

Port Douglas shines once again, bringing the international spotlight on Tropical North Queensland by being voted number four in the top 10 destinations in Australia. Port Douglas received top accolades in this year’s Trip Advisor Traveler’s Choice Awards for best holiday destination. It comes as no real surprise to those of us who live and breathe the fresh air of Port Douglas daily. We know how special this place is: travellers have cottoned on! One of Thala's recent guests posted

Gulf Route flights with Rex

By Fiona Harper| October 16, 2014|

Regional Express Airline (Rex) has announced they will be flying a new Cairns route as of 1 January 2015. Rex was awarded all five regulated routes that it applied for including the Gulf Route. Previously operated by Skytrans, Rex will fly the Gulf Route between Cairns and Normanton to Gununa (Mornington Island) to Burketown to Doomadgee to Mount Isa and return. North Queensland benefits from accessibility, though it's very disappointing to see local carrier Skytrans lose routes. Skytrans has bases

Six top reasons to visit Port Douglas

By Fiona Harper| October 7, 2014|

Port Douglas is renowned for its vibrant tropical vibe tucked in behind the beachfront coconut palms. There are plenty of reasons to holiday here - it's no easy task to limit ourselves to just six good reasons to visit Port Douglas! Macrossan Street Port Douglas’ main street, Macrossan Street is the hub of this tropical village. With the Coral Sea at one end of the street and Dickson Inlet at the other, cool breezes waft through town creating a tropical

Dugongs – nature’s smartest mammal!

By Fiona Harper| September 22, 2014|

Known as the mermaid of the sea, dugongs (or manatees) are shy bashful creatures. The jury is still out on how or why dugongs were mistaken for mermaids, but stories abound of sailors sighting graceful half woman, half fish creatures as early as Christopher Columbus’s explorations during 1493. Perhaps the combination of lonely sailors and rum consumed on extended sea voyages gets closer to the truth. Using their tail fluke for propulsion, their rotund bodies make them appear sluggish yet

Thala Beach Lodge changes name to Thala Beach Nature Reserve

By Fiona Harper| September 20, 2014|

Thala Beach Lodge, a family owned private nature and wildlife reserve in Tropical North Queensland will be known as Thala Beach Nature Reserve effective 21 September 2014. This name change better reflects Thala’s ecotourism credentials and nature-based focus. With 58 hectares of native forest on a secluded beach, Thala Beach Nature Reserve is surrounded by World Heritage listed reef and rainforest. Located 15 minutes south of Port Douglas, Thala sits atop a headland with breathtaking vistas of the Coral Sea.

Spring – one of the best times to visit Tropical North QLD

By Fiona Harper| September 9, 2014|

Cynics would say that there are only two seasons in the tropics: wet and dry. But they’d be SO wrong. While winter is absolutely delightful in Tropical North Queensland, spring is even better. With a little more cloud cover starting to appear, the sunsets become spectacular, lighting up the tropical sky at dusk in a blaze of oranges, pinks and purples. Wildlife seem to enjoy spring too! Whales linger in the warm water before returning south to the Southern Ocean.

Dolphins and Whales sighted by Thala Beach Nature Reserve guests

By Fiona Harper| August 26, 2014|

It’s humpback whale season in Tropical North Queensland with humpbacks recently spotted by guests staying at Thala Beach Nature Reserve. Venturing north on their annual holidays (actually they migrate north to breed and give birth, but we like to think they’re on holidays too!) to the warm water playground of Tropical North Queensland, humpbacks leave Antarctic waters around June. Cruising the Great Barrier Reef, often with young calves in tow, the annual migration provides spectacular wildlife viewing opportunities. Growing up

Great Barrier Reef Tours

By admin| August 20, 2014|

The Great Barrier Reef tours options are varied and plentiful, making visiting one of the Seven Wonders of the World possible for virtually everyone.  There are several ways to get out and enjoy the reef which is great, as not everyone has the same wishes, abilities or budgets. Probably the most popular of the Great Barrier Reef tours would be a day trip on one of the many large catamarans that go to various reefs. Several of these operators even

Port Douglas things to do

By admin| August 20, 2014|

To say there is no shortage of Port Douglas things to do is an understatement in any language. No other region in the world is bordered by two magnificent World Heritage Listed attractions like Port Douglas is; the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree National Park. Visitors have been coming to Port Douglas to see, touch and taste what is one of the most beautiful and environmentally enriched destinations on the planet. And at the centre of all this natural

Visiting Cairns around the Australian G20 2014?

By 30acres 30acres| August 8, 2014|

  We’d like to welcome any international guests travelling to the region as part of the Cairns G20 Meeting, and invite them to stay with us before or after the event. Thala Beach Lodge is the perfect destination, close to Cairns to switch off business mode and enjoy the very best of what North Queensland has to offer. The Cairns G20 (Group of Twenty) Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting will be held on 20-21 September 2014. This is

Thala Beach Lodge is Coconut Crazy

By admin| December 5, 2013|

Resort owners, Rob and Oonagh Prettejohn showed amazing foresight when they planted 700 coconut trees over three decades ago at beautiful Thala Beach Lodge, near Port Douglas. In fact Thala likes to wave the coconut flag whenever possible. All things coconut are embraced in the resort’s operation, from food and beverage through to the on-site experiences and wedding decoration. The resort’s most popular drink is the ‘Coconut Hit’, a secret blend of fresh coconut and liqueurs served in a fresh

The growing Osprey family at Thala

By admin| August 7, 2013|

With the house firmly established after undergoing recent renovations and decorations, the young family continues to grow. It is thought by some that extensions may be necessary to cater for this growing brood, but one thing is clear, the family love their home  - and the neighbourhood. The neighbours equally appreciate these long-term residents. The famed, local restaurant has been named after them and a magnificent, large portrait - possibly of an ancestor – adorns the walls of the reception

Breakfast in paradise – Ospreys Restaurant

By admin| July 16, 2013|

Breakfast at Ospreys Restaurant is one of the highlights of the day for guests at Thala Beach Nature Reserve, Port Douglas. Perched high in the treetops, this is no ordinary dining room - with virtually 360 degrees of superlative views this is one of the most stunning settings you can possibly imagine to start the day. Year round, Port Douglas enjoys one of the best climates in the world, so breakfasting semi-alfresco 12 months of the year is top of the menu.

Sylvia Jeffreys’ One Day in Paradise

By admin| June 5, 2013|

If you had One Day in Paradise, what would you do? That’s the challenge thrown at 20 different filmmakers by TTNQ (Tourism Tropical North Queensland) as a new tourism promotion initiative. The filmmakers each made a two-minute movie using GoPro cameras to capture their perfect, one-day experience for a chance of $75,000 prize money. The short films feature some of the regions best attractions including the ancient rainforests, food and dining options, wilderness adventures, Indigenous cultural offerings and the Great

Five Favourite Book Reading Spots at Thala

By admin| April 25, 2013|

You’re booked in for some much needed tropical relaxation at Thala, and you’ve been mulling over what activities you might engage in. Adventure, romance, relaxation, the allure of Port Douglas? Wherever the urge takes you, it’s likely you’ll sneak away to an idyllic spot with a good book at some point. Here’s five of our favourite places that'll help you do just that. 1. The Wallaby Grazing Patch Located adjacent to Thala’s star gazing observatory lies the cultivated Wallaby Grazing

Crimson Finch

By admin| February 15, 2013|

Within Thala’s stunning surrounds, it’s the native residents which often lend the resort its vibrant setting. One such resident, which you may occasionally spot around the grounds, is the crimson finch, a flustered looking bird with a bright red face that often enjoys to snack on a hearty spider. Found in both Papua New Guinea and the east and west side of Far North Queensland, the crimson finch - also known as the blood finch, pheasant finch and the Australian

Thala on Queensland Weekender

By admin| January 22, 2013|

When TV presenter Dean Miller and executive chef Alastair McLeod joined for an episode of Queensland Weekender, the two could hardly look more dissimilar.  However, what they shared on their week long adventure in Far North Queensland was infectious enthusiasm, along with the ability to have a good laugh (often at their own expense). Watch the full Queensland Weekender episode below: Kicking off their odyssey in Thala Beach Lodge, the two took to the superbly tropical surrounds like giddy schoolboys.

Magpie Goose

By admin| January 3, 2013|

While sounding like some disturbing hybrid mutation that swoops residents while making loud honking noises, the magpie goose is a species in its own right. In fact, it comes from a very old family, with one relative, Vegavis iaai, known to subsist approximately 67 million years ago. However, much like other geese, the magpie goose does indeed utter a loud honking sound. And if you’re in any doubt you’ve spotted one, they also have a distinct black and white plumage

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