Cape Palmerston National Park Mackay

Sitting at the mouth of Cape Creek, Cape Creek camping area is a popular spot to fish and relax. Photo credit: John Augusteyn © Queensland Government

Rocky headlands, mangroves, swamps and sand dunes are iconic features of Cape Palmerston National Park. Photo credit: Paul Curtis © North Queensland Wildscapes

Cape Creek camping area

This sheltered camping area is a great home base from which to explore the park and surrounding waters.

Accessible by

  • High clearance 4WD
  • Trail bike
  • Boat

Campground facilities

  • Anchoring allowed
  • Tent camping
  • Camper trailer camping
  • Tent camping beside car
  • Scenic drive
  • Boating
  • Fishing

Set up your tent or high-clearance camper trailer in this large and grassy area cradled between a sandy peninsula and the mouth of Cape Creek. Protected by prevailing winds and shaded by sheoaks, Cape Creek is an excellent base from which to explore the park.

Jump in your boat or kayak and explore the coastline and creeks. Catch your dinner and cook it over your camp fire (bring your own off-ground fire container and milled wood).

Keep your binoculars and cameras handy because the waters are known for the dugong and other marine life, and the beaches and trees are alive with birdlife.

Getting there and getting around

Cape Creek camping area is in Cape Palmerston National Park, 115km south-east of Mackay on the Central Queensland coast. You need a 4WD to access the camping area.

The camping area is 15km from the southern boundary on the Cape Palmerston drive.

  • Turn off the Bruce Highway at Ilbilbie (76km south of Mackay and 157km north of Marlborough) and drive east towards Greenhill.
  • Before Greenhill, turn left into Cape Palmerston Road.
  • The park boundary is about 6km along this road.
  • You will need to consult the map (PDF, 146.0KB) because the tracks and intersections aren't signposted.
  • Make sure you check the tide times before you drive on the beach as the tides vary up to 6m.
  • Read 4WD with care for important information on 4WD safety and minimal impact driving.

Before you visit

Opening hours

Cape Creek camping area is open 24 hours a day. Check-in to your camp after 2pm and check-out by 11am on the day of departure.

Check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions.

Cape Creek, Cape Palmerston National Park

Cape Creek, Cape Palmerston National Park. Photo courtesy of John Atkinson.

Camping area features: on a small peninsula bordered by a creek mouth and a beach. Sites are shaded by she-oaks, with easy access to water for fishing and boating.

Location: 45 minutes from the park boundary, weather and beach conditions permitting.

Access: the camping area can be reached by 4WD only.

Number of sites: undefined.

Camp sites are suitable for: tent camping beside your car, camper trailers.

Camp site surface: sand/grass.

Facilities: Toilets are not provided at Cape Creek, visitors are advised to bring their own portable toilets or to bury all faecal matter and toilet paper 15–20cm deep at least 100m from tracks, campsites and waterbodies.

Open fires: on-ground campfires prohibited. Above-ground fire containers permitted—bring your own clean, milled timber. Remove your fire container when you leave. Fuel stoves are recommended.

Generators: not allowed.

Essentials to bring: drinking water, food, rubbish bags, insect repellent, sun protection, first-aid kit and a reliable torch. Read more about before you visit.

Bookings: book online or learn about our camping booking options.

Mobile phone coverage: poor. Satellite phones or marine radios are recommended.

Visiting safely

For more safety information see Visiting Cape Palmerston safely and camp with care.

  • There are currently no park alerts for this park.