GENTLE surf brushes the golden sand. Palm trees, shading our hammocks, sway slowly in the warm breeze.
A cold drink is within reach. Above us is our luxury resort, its individual bungalows scattered in dense rainforest.
All the ingredients for a romantic, secluded getaway? You betcha.
And the best news is that this idyllic spot is on our own shores - welcome to Thala Beach Lodge, a luxury eco-resort just 16km south of Port Douglas.
Thala has become a “well known secret” for anyone seeking a romantic interlude.
Thala covers 48ha of peninsula with a reception area on a hilltop with views out into the Coral Sea and coral islands, reefs and mountain range.
Cascading down the hillside, 80 free-standing bungalows sit far enough away from each other to give complete privacy.
The private beach is but a five-minute walk away along a rainforest track while a series of pools near the main building allows serious veg out time in the sun - and a cool drink from the bar.
If a wedding is in your sights then Thala is your place.
Beach weddings are popular and Thala will arrange a package for couples.
It includes a marriage celebrant, all administration associated with the wedding, bouquet and buttonhole, sparkling wine and a professional photographer.
Or if you want a church wedding, the tiny, quaint old timber St. Mary's By The Sea in Port Douglas is popular.
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