Great Sandy Marine Park Bundaberg | Fraser Coast | Sunshine Coast

Great Sandy Marine Park Zoning Plan Review

Keep informed about the zoning plan review process for the Great Sandy Marine Park.

Photo credit: © Ben Edmonds Photography

Be inspired: Whale watching in the Great Sandy Marine Park!

If you (or someone you know) has been fortunate enough to see humpback whales in their natural habitat, you’ll know why the experience is describes as mind-blowing, majestic, even life-changing! Photo credit: © Tourism and Events Queensland

Things to do

    Looking northward to Waddy Point from Champagne Pools on Fraser Island.

    Looking northward to Waddy Point from Champagne Pools on Fraser Island.

    Photo credit: Queensland Government

    Camping and accommodation


    Camping is available in these nearby Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service's parks:

    Book your camp site online.

    If you cannot book online, see camping bookings for other options.

    Other accommodation

    There is a range of holiday accommodation in and around Bundaberg, Hervey Bay, the townships of the Great Sandy Strait, Tin Can Bay and Rainbow Beach. For more information see the tourism information links.

    Boating and fishing

    Read more about boating safely and measures to take when boating to look after the park.

    Fishing activities are allowed in the marine park, but some restrictions apply to encourage sustainable use. Read more about marine park zones and how to fish for the future.

    A nesting loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta).

    A nesting loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta).

    Photo credit: Queensland Government

    Viewing wildlife

    Turtle watching

    Mon Repos Conservation Park supports the most significant nesting population of the endangered loggerhead turtles Caretta caretta in the South Pacific Ocean.

    • Designated areas in the marine park protect a nesting population of about 300–400 female loggerheads.
    • Green and flatback turtles also nest here.
    • You can only see this annual event by booking in to a night-time, ranger-guided tour.
    • Tours take place from November to late-March.
    • Small groups of visitors are guided to the beach by rangers, researchers or trained volunteers.
    • You will see female turtles laying their eggs or, later in the season, watch the hatchlings emerge from the nests and race to the sea.

    Keeping the turtles safe

    The guided tours help to protect nesting turtles and hatchlings.

    • Marine turtles are easily disturbed by people who don't act properly around them.
    • Guided tours help people understand correct turtle-watching guidelines.
    • Read more about turtle watching in Mon Repos Conservation Park.

    Whale watching

    Whale watching in Hervey Bay is a must-do activity, if you're there between July and November.

    Some operators offer immersive whale interactions, where you can get into the water with whales. The operators put their passengers on a boom net, or a duckboard—a submerged platform at the rear of the vessel—or swimmers can hold onto a mermaid line, which has floats.

    Be aware: Operators are required to abide by specific safety rules as a condition of their permit in order to minimise these risks, as these activities carry an element of danger.

    Keep your distance for safety and conservation

    All boaties, including any recreational boating activity must abide by the National Standard for approach distances for whales and dolphins.

    Other things to do

    Several areas within the marine park are popular for diving and snorkelling, such as the Ex-HMAS Tobruk area, but prior permission is required to enter the area. Enjoy the experience and leave only bubbles.

    • There are currently no park alerts for this park.