Bowling Green Bay National Park is located in northern Queensland just 28 km south of Townsville. It is known as the gateway to the tropical rainforests of northern Queensland; and it is the latest feature in our list of the best national parks in Queensland. The park is located between Cape Cleveland and Cape Bowling Green alongside its namesake, serene Bowling Green Bay; inside the boundaries of the park is a variety of habitats, coastal estuaries, and landscape covered in forest that includes Mount Elliot and Saddle Mountain. Also within the park are the floodplains of the Haughton River which is one of the largest wetlands on the entire east coast of the country. Mount Elliot towers over the landscape at an impressive 1.342 metres in height. Creeks run down the eastern slopes of the mountain and feed into the wetlands. The landscape here is unique to the tropical northern climate of the region. We have already covered quite an impressive list of National Parks of Queensland including:
Aerial View of Bowling Green Bay National Park Photo Credit: NationalParks.Queensland.com
Bowling Green Bay Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Bowling Green Bay National Park Map Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Alligator Creek and Mount Elliot Photo Credit: Queensland.com
Getting to Bowling Green Bay National Park
Bowling Green Bay National Park Map Photo Credit: Google Maps
Townsville Car Rental Map Photo Credit: Budget.com.au
Bowling Green Bay National Park is located south of Townsville, Queensland. Townsville is one of the major port cities for the Great Barrier Reef and is located on the northern Queensland coast. You can hire a car in Townsville so that you can get around to Bowling Green Bay National Park as well as the other nearby holiday destinations near Townsville. Hiring your own car means that you will be able to see what you want, when you want to. Our knowledgeable staff will be able to recommend the best vehicle for your individual travel needs and also offer up some travel tips as a local. Here is a link to safety tips for driving on sand. You can read about more holiday highlights near Townsville and northern Queensland:
Camping in Bowling Green Bay National Park
Salmon Creek Campground Map Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Cocoa Creek Campground Map Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Barratta Creek Campground Map Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Alligator Creek Campground Map Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
There are four campgrounds in Bowling Green Bay National Park. A visit here is enhanced when you spend the night and see the sights throughout all parts of the day. The four campgrounds are the Alligator Creek Campground, Barratta Creek Campground, Cocoa Creek Campground, and the Salmon Creek Campground. The campgrounds near Alligator creek have hot showers, toilet facilities and wood barbecues. It is accessible for caravans and motorhomes, or you can camp in tents. There are picnic tables and a shelter shed.
Cape Cleveland Lighthouse Photo Credit: Wikipedia
Cape Bowling Green Lighthouse Photo Credit: Wikipedia
Bowling Green Bay National Park lies between the Cape Cleveland Lighthouse on Cape Cleveland and the Cape Bowling Green Lighthouse on Cape Bowling Green. The two lighthouses serve as scenic bookends for the park. The diversity in between is quite spectacular with so many different habitats and landscapes. It is quite interesting and definitely worth the visit. There are three sections in Bowling Green Bay National Park: the Mount Elliot Section, the Cape Cleveland Section, and the Bowling Green Bay Section.
Things to Do in Bowling Green Bay National Park
Alligator Creek Lookout Photo Credit: Queensland.com
Alligator Creek Boardwalk Photo Credit: Queensland.com
Alligator Creek Boardwalk Photo Credit: Queensland.com
View from Alligator Creek Lookout Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
Alligator Creek is the main creek within the park where much of the wildlife activity can be seen. You can stroll on the boardwalk and hike through the park grounds to the lookout. Swimming is allowed in Alligator Creek. Of course, you should look for signs regarding crocodiles, because despite the alligator in the name, this is still croc country. Even if you aren’t camping overnight, you can still access the picnic areas and have a nice lunch or snack. Aboriginal rock paintings can be found on the slopes of Mount Elliot.The Alligator Creek Boardwalk is about 100 metres long and is wheelchair accessible. if you are looking for a longer hiking adventure, check out the Alligator Creek Track, which is about 2 km long. It starts at the southern end of the day-use area and passes through the Alligator Creek Lookout and then on to Cockatoo Creek, which is great for a refreshing swim at the end of your hike.
Animals to Look For in Bowling Green Bay National Park
Broglas Photo Credit: nprsr.qld.gov.au
The national park is filled with many different birds, especially wading birds, so bird watching is one of the main things to do here. At night you can look for brushtail possums, sugar gliders and northern brown bandicoots. When you camp overnight, waking up early is the way to see the wallabies who are most likely to be seen at dawn feeding along with the rufous bettongs. The bay is an important habitat nursery for crustaceans and other fish. It is a feeding ground for rare and threatened wildlife like dugongs, green sea turtles, little tern and eastern curlew. The birdlife here is abundant. Both the bay and the wetland areas of the national park are vital to and support a great many species of birds. Seasonally, the wetlands support over 20,000 waterfowl which include 10,000 magpie geese, 10,000 sanderlings, and 4,000 brolgas. To give you an idea of how important the Bowling Green Bay wetlands are to the bird species, close to half of the 244 bird species that frequent the region breed in the Bowling Green Bay wetlands. many migratory birds from Japan and China also spend time here in the wetlands. Its preservation is key to the sustainability of the birdlife here as well.