Things to do
Camping and accommodation
There are several options for camping in Bowling Green Bay National Park.
Cape Cleveland section: Bush camping is available at Cocoa Creek camping area and Salmon Creek camping area. Access is by four-wheel drive and facilities are not provided.
Bowling Green Bay section: Bush camping is available at Barratta Creek camping area. Access is by four-wheel drive and facilities area not provided.
Mount Elliot section: Hike-in bush camping is available at Cockatoo Creek camping area and Alligator Falls camping area. Access is by foot and facilities are not provided.
There is the opportunity to undertake remote hiking and to remote bush camp in the Mount Cleveland and Mount Elliot sections of the national park. Bushwalkers must be well-equipped and experienced.
All camping activities in the park require a permit and fees apply.
- Find out more about camping in Bowling Green Bay National Park.
- Book your camp site online.
- If you cannot book online, see camping bookings for other options.
There is a range of holiday accommodation in and around Townsville. For more information, see the tourism information links.
Formal walking track/trails are only provided in the Mount Elliot section of the park. For more information see Journeys.
The rugged landscape of Mount Elliot and Mount Cleveland offer extended bushwalking opportunities for experienced and well-prepared bush walkers.
Before embarking on a remote hike, research and plan your trip well in advance. If you intend to embark on extensive hikes in remote areas remember to tell a responsible person where you are going and when you expect to return. Let them know your route and contact them on your return. Have a contingency plan if you fail to contact them by the agreed time. If you change your plans, inform them.
Follow the Parks and forests walk with care remote walking guidelines, and check the Bowling Green Bay National Park visiting safely and park alerts on this webpage before you visit. For public safety, two restricted access areas have been declared in the Mount Elliot section of the national park. Restricted Access Area notice, Mount Elliot section (1) ; Restricted Access Area notice, Mount Elliot section (2) .
Remember, accidents can happen to even the most experience bushwalker. A high level of physical fitness, navigational and first-aid skills are essential for undertaking a remote hike in this national park.
See camping information for Mount Cleveland and Mount Elliot remote bush camp details.
Take a scenic drive to Cocoa Creek in the Cape Cleveland section of the park. Pass by wetlands of international importance, the granite outcrops of Mount Cleveland and stunning coastal woodlands and mangroves communities (remember to pack binoculars, a camera and insect repellent!). A four-wheel drive is recommended on the unsealed roads in the national park, and access can become boggy after rain. To protect the fragile coastal environment do not venture off the national park roads.
Boating and fishing
Marine waters adjacent to Bowling Green Bay National Park are internationally significant and are protected in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Zones in the two marine parks—the Great Barrier Reef Coast and Great Barrier Reef—provide a balanced approach to protecting the marine and intertidal environments while allowing recreational and commercial use. Check zoning information and maps before entering or conducting any activities in the marine parks.
Fishing is permitted in the tidal creeks in the Cape Cleveland and Bowling Green Bay sections of the national park. Fisheries regulations apply—information on bag and size limits, restricted species and seasonal closures is available from the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.
Estuarine crocodiles inhabit the waterways and coastal sections of the Cape Cleveland and Bowling Green Bay. Always be Crocwise in Croc Country.
Dangerous stinging jellyfish (‘stingers’) may be present in the coastal waters at any time of the year, and occur more frequently in the warmer months. Visit marine stingers for the latest safety and first aid information.
Sandflies and mosquitoes may be a nuisance, especially during the wet season (December–April). Wear a long-sleeved shirt and pants and insect repellent to protect yourself from insect bites and stings.
Please follow the Parks and forests boat and fish with care guidelines.
Picnic and day-use areas
At Alligator Creek (Mount Elliot) enjoy a shady picnic by the creek or a barbecue lunch and family game in the spacious day-use area. For more information see Attractions.
Bowling Green Bay National Park offers excellent opportunities for viewing wildlife. The diversity of landscapes and vegetation supports a large and varied population of birds, including migrants such as the channel-billed cuckoo. Male scarlet honeyeaters make a colourful subject for keen photographers. Agile wallabies and allied rock-wallabies are common. At night, common brushtail possums can be spotted patrolling the area. If you are lucky you may even see a rufous bettong. Never feed any animals, including fish and turtles, as it can affect their health and alter the natural population balance. Ensure that your food is securely packed away out of animals' reach.
Throughout much of the year the buzzing resonance of cicadas dominates the park. Their empty skins can be found on rough-barked trees.
See the description of the park's natural environment for more details about Bowling Green National Park's diverse wildlife.
We hope you enjoy your time in Bowling Green Bay National Park, please remember to check the Parks and forests park alerts before you visit.
- Cape Cleveland section of Bowling Green Bay National Park aerial burning 30 March to 30 June 2023
- Townsville Scenic Rim and Bowling Green Bay National Park aerial burning program 10 March to 30 June 2023