The islands feature outstanding rock formations and diverse landforms including shallow reefs, sand spits, beaches and dense rainforest-clad slopes. The rainforested slopes of the Barnard Islands rise steeply from the sea, part of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Mangroves fringe parts of the islands and coastal plants border the shores. The South Barnard islands (Sister and Stephens islands) are an important breeding site for seabirds. 23 species of woodland birds have also been recorded on and around the Barnard islands.... more
Camp on Stephens or Kent islands. Drop a line and catch a fish for dinner. Snorkel on the extensive reefs connecting Sisters and Stephens islands in the South Barnard islands and on the fringing reefs surrounding the North Barnard islands. Wander along the beaches and spend fascinating hours watching birds. Access is restricted to Sisters and Stephens islands from 1 September to 31 March each year to protect nesting sea birds. Remember to be croc wise.... less
How To Get There
The Barnard Island Group comprises seven continental islands - Bresnahan, Hutchinson, Jessie, Kent and Lindquist (North Barnard islands) and Sisters and Stephens (South Barnard islands). The islands lie five to 10 kilometres offshore from Kurrimine Beach, which is approximately 130 kilometres south of Cairns and 240 kilometres north of Townsville. The islands can be reached by private boat or sea kayak from Mourilyan Harbour and Kurrimine Beach. To reach Mourilyan Harbour turn off the Bruce Highway at Mourilyan into Mourilyan Harbour Road (signposted to Etty Bay). To reach Kurrimine Beach turn off the Bruce Highway near Silkwood into Murdering Point Road. Lindquist Island is a Commonwealth defence reserve. Access to the island is not permitted.
To protect nesting seabirds, access to Stephens and Sisters islands is restricted from 1 September to 31 March each year. During this time, access to Sisters Island is totally prohibited and access to Stephens Island is limited to the sand spit and camping area on the western side of the island.
Camping fees apply.
The Barnard Island Group National Park has a tropical climate. In summer, the daytime temperatures average 30 degrees Celsius with high humidity and rainfall. From April to September the days are cooler and less humid. Despite the steady south-easterly trade winds, this is usually the best time to visit.
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