Nature, culture and history
This 830 hectare national park is part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Granite outcrops and sandy beaches are features of Goold Island National Park, a hilly continental island off Cardwell. Eucalypt woodland covers most of the island but patches of lush rainforest grow in sheltered gullies. Noisy flocks of sulphur-crested cockatoos live in the island's forests.
The main vegetation is eucalypt woodland with areas of closed vine forest in the protected gullies. The forests around the creeks comprise tall solitaire palms, fig trees and black bean trees.
The Traditional Owners, the Bandjin and Girramay Aboriginal people inhabited the area for many thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans. The stone fish traps and shell middens are some of the lasting structures left to the Traditional Owners in these areas and illustrate the type of lifestyle and food sources used during Aboriginal occupation of the islands. These structures require very careful management and visitors should take extra care not to disturb or damage them. The Bandjin and girramay people travelled to and from Goold Island and the mainland in bark canoes called gayus.
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