Latest COVID-19 impacts—Qld national parks, state forests and recreation areas. Check the latest information and updates.
About Mackay Islands
These scenic continental islands were once mainland mountain ranges. Discover the national park islands’ diverse plant communities, from open forests, grasslands and closed forests to lowland swamps. Open eucalypt forests flourish in dry, shallow soils on steep yet sheltered slopes. Species here include Moreton Bay ash, poplar gum, ironbark and bloodwood. Mackay cedar, tulip oak and mountain ash can be found on the Newry Islands.
Casuarinas and pandanus line long sandy beaches. Grasslands tolerant of strong winds and salt spray survive on slopes exposed to the prevailing south-easterly winds. Mangroves and brackish paperbark swamps occur in lowland areas. Hoop pines grow along windswept rocky headlands.
- Brampton Islands National Park
- Newry Islands National Park
- Smith Islands National Park
- South Cumberland Islands National Park
- Mackay Highlands Great Walk
- Cape Hillsborough National Park
The islands are protected national parks so please leave all plants and animals undisturbed. Follow these tips for a safe, enjoyable trip with minimal impact.
- Camp fires are prohibited. Use a fuel stove.
- Ship it in, ship it out. There are no bins so please take all your rubbish back to the mainland. You can help by collecting rubbish left by others.
- Leave everything as you find it. Everything, living or dead, is protected in national parks.
- No toilets? Bury human waste. Dig a hole at least 15cm deep and cover well. Sanitary items are rubbish so please take these back to the mainland.
- Treat all water before drinking. Rainwater tanks may be empty in dry times, so bring sufficient water with you (at least five litres per person per day).
- Avoid introducing pests. Ensure your gear is clean and free of seeds, soil, ants, insects, rodents or cane toads.
- Leave pets at home. Pets are not permitted on national park islands or adjacent beaches, and could become lost or injured.
See the guidelines on caring for parks for more information about protecting our environment and heritage in parks.
The Mackay Islands are managed to preserve their natural, cultural and scenic values, and to provide for sustainable recreational use. Only self-reliant, nature-based and ecologically sustainable recreation is permitted.
The national park islands are part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. The department is responsible for managing them, and jointly manages the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.
For tourism information for all regions in Queensland see Queensland Holidays.
- There are currently no park alerts for this park.