Marpa National Park (CYPAL) Tropical North Queensland

Things to do

    White-bellied sea-eagle. Photo: Andrew McDougall, Queensland Government

    White-bellied sea-eagle. Photo: Andrew McDougall, Queensland Government

    Camping and accommodation

    Camping

    Camping is not permitted on any of the islands within Marpa National Park (CYPAL). The nearest boat-based camping is available on Flinders Island in the Flinders Group National Park. Camping is also possible on the mainland in nearby Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park (CYPAL).

    Other accommodation

    Camping is available in Port Stewart, approximately 20km north-west of the islands on the east coast of Cape York Peninsula. Coen, a further 90km north-west of Port Stewart, has camping, hotel/motel and homestead stay accommodation. For more information see the tourism information links.

    Boating

    The islands provide a sheltered anchorage in prevailing south-easterly conditions, normally between April and October. There are no public moorings in waters surrounding Marpa National Park (CYPAL).

    When boating help protect the fringing reefs by following these guidelines.

    • Anchor in sand away from coral reefs.
    • Use a reef pick if anchoring in coral is unavoidable. When hauling in, motor toward the anchor to prevent damage.
    • Avoid landing on islands where seabirds are roosting or nesting on the beach—they are easily disturbed.

    Marpa National Park (CYPAL) and the surrounding marine waters 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.

    A Marine National Park (Green) Zone encompasses the reef and waters surrounding Marpa National Park (CYPAL). These ‘no-take’ areas prohibit extractive activities like fishing or collecting.

    Be aware that crocodiles can turn up anywhere in croc country, including tidal reaches of rivers, along beaches, on offshore islands and cays in the Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait, and in freshwater lagoons, rivers and swamps. Crocodiles are dangerous and attacks can be fatal. Be aware that estuarine crocodiles can occur in waters around island national parks. Remember to be crocwise in croc country.

    Viewing wildlife

    Marpa National Park (CYPAL) offers opportunities to see wildlife in a natural environment. Those who enjoy birdwatching may see vulnerable beach stone-curlews, brown boobies, spangled drongos and white-bellied sea-eagles.

    Fringing reefs and seagrass beds provide food and shelter for dolphins, dugongs, turtles and sometimes estuarine crocodiles. Visitors to Marpa National Park (CYPAL) are sure to experience an encounter of a natural kind. See the description of the park’s natural environment for more details about its diverse wildlife.

    • There are currently no park alerts for this park.