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Camping in Capricornia Cays National Park

Capricornia Cays National Park offers varied camping experiences on three separate coral cays. Completely self-sufficient camping is available on Mast Head Island. Lady Musgrave Island and North West Island both have visitor facilities. Some commercial operators service the islands. Camping is not permitted on any other island.

If relying on commercial transportation to the islands ensure that you have organised your vessel passage prior to booking your camping holiday. See tourism information links for information on charter vessels servicing the islands.

Camping permits are required and fees apply. Obtain your permit before setting up camp. A tag with your booking number must be displayed at your campsite.

Guide to seasonal camping and day-use opening periods.

Island Day use Camping
North West Open all year Open Easter*–Australia Day†
Lady Musgrave Open all year Open Easter*–Australia Day†
Mast Head Easter*–14 October Open Easter*–14 October

*First day of Queensland Easter school holidays.

† Day after Australia Day long weekend or day after Australia Day public holiday (if holiday falls mid-week).

Bookings

Camping bookings can be made up to 11 months in advance. Advance bookings are essential for school holiday periods.

Park-specific conditions

On arrival

Camp in designated areas only. Beach camping is not permitted. When selecting a site and setting up camp, consider others who may follow you. Do not spread your group too far—keep together and let other campers use sites as well.

Warning! Coral cays are remote. Strong winds, rough seas and cyclones can isolate campers. Carry emergency food and water for several days, AM/FM radio, spare batteries and medical supplies.

  • All fuel and dive compressors must be kept in storage areas provided.
  • Dive compressors may only be used between 9 am and 6 pm.
  • Dive compressors are prohibited on Mast Head Island.
  • Fish cleaning scraps must be dumped more than 500 metres seaward of the reef edge. Vary dumping locations of fish scraps to stop sharks developing scavenging behaviour. Do not feed scraps to birds such as silver gulls.
  • Seasonal camping and/or visitor closures are enforced on all three islands (see table).
  • This reduces impact on turtle hatchlings, breeding seabirds and sensitive vegetation.

Read more about staying safe and looking after the park.

North West Island

Camp on the largest island in the Capricornia Cays. Photo: NPSR

Camp on the largest island in the Capricornia Cays. Photo: NPSR

Camping area features: Nestled in pisonia forest with access to island walking track. Snorkel and dive in surrounding waters or reef walk at low tide.

Location: 75 km north-east of Gladstone.

Access: The camping area can be reached by boat only.

Number of sites: Open area without separately defined sites. Up to 150 people can camp here at any one time. Camp only in the designated area inland of rope barriers.

Maximum Number of camping nights: 21

Camp sites are suitable for: tent camping only.

Camp site surface: Sand.

Facilities: Composting toilets, fuel storage and compressor bunker.

Open fires: Prohibited. Gas and fuel stoves are recommended.

Generators: Not permitted. There is no medical exemption to operate a low decibel 65dB(A) generator in the Capricornia Cays National Park’.

Essentials to bring: All food and drinking water, sturdy rubbish bags, insect repellent, sun protection, first-aid kit, reliable torch. Read more about things to know before you go.

Bookings: Book online, over-the-counter or by phone. Advance bookings are essential for school holiday periods.

Mobile phone coverage: Unreliable. Marine radios and satellite phones are recommended.

Lady Musgrave Island

Camping on Lady Musgrave Island. Photo: NPSR

Camping on Lady Musgrave Island. Photo: NPSR

Camping area features: Sheltered by pisonia trees with scenic views over the reef. Swim, dive and snorkel or enjoy the walking tracks.

Location: Southern-most island of the Capricornia Cays National Park, 96 km north-east of Bundaberg.

Access: The camping area can be reached by boat only.

Number of sites: Open area without separately defined sites. Up to 40 people can camp here at any one time. Camp only in the designated area inland of rope barriers.

Maximum Number of camping nights: 21

Camp sites are suitable for: tent camping only.

Camp site surface: Sand.

Facilities: Composting toilets, emergency radio, fuel storage and compressor bunker.

Open fires: Prohibited, but gas and fuel stoves are recommended.

Generators: Not permitted. There is no medical exemption to operate a low decibel 65dB(A) generator in the Capricornia Cays National Park’.

Essentials to bring: All food and drinking water, sturdy rubbish bags, insect repellent, sun protection, first-aid kit, reliable torch. Read more about things to know before you go.

Bookings: Book online, over-the-counter or by phone. Advance bookings are essential for school holiday periods.

Mobile phone coverage: Unreliable. Marine VHF radios and satellite phones are recommended.

Mast Head Island

Camp under shady casuarinas at Mast Head Island. Photo: NPSR

Camp under shady casuarinas at Mast Head Island. Photo: NPSR

Camping area features: Self-sufficient camping under casuarina trees with lagoon views. Swim, dive and snorkel or view abundant local wildlife.

Location: 60 km north-east of Gladstone.

Access: This camping area is accessible by boat only.

Number of sites: Open area without separately defined sites. Up to 50 people can camp here at any one time.

Maximum Number of Camping Nights: 21

Camp sites are suitable for: tent camping only.

Camp site surface: Sand.

Facilities: No facilities are provided.

Open Fires: Prohibited, but gas and fuel stoves are recommended.

Generators: Not permitted. There is no medical exemption to operate a low decibel 65dB(A) generator in the Capricornia Cays National Park’.

Essentials to bring: All food and water, first-aid kit, insect repellent, sun protection, reliable torch, sturdy rubbish bags. Portable chemical toilets are also recommended. Read more about things to know before you go.

Bookings: Book online, over-the-counter or by phone. Advance bookings are essential for school holiday periods.

Mobile phone coverage: Unreliable. Marine VHF radios and satellite phones are recommended.

Last updated
10 June 2016