St Helena Island National Park Brisbane

The fascinating history of St Helena Island is at your fingertips

Enjoy a virtual tour of a colonial-era prison—see the island stockade from the air, and learn about a notorious prisoner—all without leaving your seat! Photo credit: © Queensland Government

About St Helena

    St Helena National Park.

    St Helena National Park.

    Photo credit: Tourism Queensland

    Park features

    St Helena Island National Park contains the ruins of a colonial ­­penal settlement, which operated here from 1867 until 1932. Remains of the prison stockade include the bakery, workshops and underground tanks. Beyond the stockade are the stone ruins of warder accommodation, a sugar mill, lime kiln and stone causeway. The vegetation today is an interesting mix of the original open pastures, vine forests, remnants of beautifully landscaped gardens, and former crops such as olive trees.

    Middens and shell scatters show that for thousands of years, Aboriginal people visited the island seasonally, harvesting flying-foxes, dugongs and shellfish.

    Wetlands around the island are a haven for migratory wading birds. The surrounding waters are protected in Moreton Bay Marine Park.

    Looking after the park

    Your help is needed to preserve the park and historic ruins for generations to come. Please follow these guidelines while visiting the park.

    • In order to preserve the historic sites, access is restricted to some areas of the island. Fines apply for entering the restricted access area without a tour guide.
    • Help to protect the fragile ruins. Do not touch any structures, as the rock crumbles easily.
    • Everything in the national park is protected.
    • No rubbish bins are provided. Take your rubbish home with you to help keep the island free from pollution.

    See Caring for parks for more information about protecting our environment and heritage in parks.

    Park management

    St Helena Island National Park, established in October 1979, was Queensland's first historic national park. The Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service works toward preserving the ruins and artefacts from further degradation and accurately presenting the park and its history to visitors.

    A Management Plan for St Helena Island National Park will be prepared in the future.

    Tourism information links

    For all educational enquiries, please contact:

    Moreton Bay Environmental Education Centre
    PO Box 373, Wynnum QLD 4178
    ph (07) 3906 9111
    fax (07) 3906 9100

    For more information on St Helena Island, please contact:

    The St Helena Community

    Brisbane’s Living Heritage Network

    For more information on tours of St Helena Island, please contact:

    ABSea Cruises
    ph: 1300 438 787

    Brisbane Cruises
    ph: 07 3630 2666

    For more information about activities, tours and accommodation in the Brisbane region, please contact:

    Brisbane Visitor Information Centre
    Queen Street Mall, Brisbane QLD 4002
    ph (07) 3006 6290
    fax (07) 3006 6250

    For tourism information for all regions in Queensland see Queensland Holidays.

    Further information

    St Helena Island National Park
    PO Box 293, Wynnum QLD 4178
    ph (07) 3393 4647

    • There are currently no park alerts for this park.