St Helena Island

Despite being the only island in Moreton Bay with a holy name, St Helena Island has a dark and grim past.

For 65 years (from 1867 to 1932) it was Queensland's maximum security prison for men, and was home to the colony's worst criminals. The Prison Superintendent lived in a magnificent house surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens. The house has gone, but glimpses of his opulent lifestyle remain, along with other ruins which are a reminder of personal enterprise and suffering. Today's St Helena provides visitors with an eerie insight into its bleak past, which gave rise to its reputation as 'the hell hole of the Pacific' and 'Queensland's Inferno'.

Located four kilometres from the mouth of the Brisbane River, St Helena Island is one of Queensland's most historic islands and has been preserved as Historic National Park - the first of its type Queensland.

Today, an environmental education centre operates on the island. It helps students understand how European settlers changed the Australian landscape and colonial Queensland's social and political history affected the lives of St Helena's prisoners and wardens.

Tour operators conduct educational historic tours of St Helena, but more daring types can enjoy 'Ghost Tour' at night, when visitors can watch live, moonlit vignettes re-enacting the Island's history.

Private boat owners can join a Ranger-led tour on weekends and public holidays by making prior arrangements with Rangers on St.Helena Island. Fees apply.

Other Information

Family Friendly:

Family friendly – please refer to operator's website for services and facilities.
St Helena Island, Brisbane Area
Queensland
Australia

Find What's Nearby

Displaying 1-10 of 18
Sort by:
Show:

Magnetic Island National Park

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Rocky granite headlands and towering hoop pines stand sentinel over tranquil sandy bays on this rugged, mountainous island covered with open eucalypt woodlands and surrounded by coral reefs. The island is easily accessible from Townsville and is noted for its abundant wildlife and varied history.

Strand, The

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Immerse yourself in the Townsville way of life and discover The Strand, Townsville's thriving beach foreshore! With a relaxed, yet energetic vibe, The Strand is bursting with activities to excite the whole family.

North Ward

Townsville, Townsville Area
North Ward is one of the oldest and most popular suburbs of Townsville. Wedged between towering Castle Hill and the deep blue Coral Sea, North Ward overlooks the tourist drawcard of Magnetic Island and the Port of Townsville.

Cape Pallarenda Conservation Park

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Set in a scenic coastal location amongst open woodland and vine thickets, this park features an historic quarantine station, established in 1915. The station was initially used to quarantine passengers on incoming ships.

Castle Hill

Townsville, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Just metres short of a mountain, Castle Hill is the giant pink granite monolith that stands proud in the centre of Townsville - a perfect place for visitors to orientate themselves. As well as offering vehicle access, Castle Hill provides a number of popular walking tracks, which are frequented by more than 2,500 locals a day!

Magnetic Island Dive Site

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Magnetic Island is a popular destination off Townsville for day trips or an extended stay. The island has many sheltered bays that are great to snorkel or dive, as they have a surprising amount of coral and some great marine life.

Nelly Bay

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
A holiday on Magnetic Island is likely to start on Nelly Bay, Magnetic Island's main residential bay. Nelly Bay is the first point of access for the passenger and car ferries and is an easy location to access bus transfers, taxis, hire vehicles or jump on board a guided tour.

Arcadia at Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Free Entry
Arcadia is perfectly situated in the smallest of the four main bays on Magnetic Island, and is surrounded by the prominent Alma Bay and Geoffrey Bay. Geoffrey Bay is a Marine National Park Zone - which means no fishing or collecting - but is great for exploring during low tide.

Townsville North Queensland

Townsville City, Townsville Area
The best holidays are the ones that leave you feeling energised and alive. Townsville North Queensland gives you that feeling with a collection of destinations and attractions to spark everyone's curiosity.

Magnetic Island

Magnetic Island, Townsville Area
Escape to a tropical island paradise surrounded by secluded bays, golden beaches and activities to excite everyone. With 23 beaches and bays and just a 20 minute ferry ride from Townsville, Magnetic Island has the natural beauty and serenity of an untouched paradise within a thriving community.
No Results Message
Displaying 1-10 of 18
Sort by:
Show:

Explore the Region

Note: Information on listed products and services are provided by the operator and were correct at the time of publishing. Rates are indicative based on the minimum and maximum available prices of products and services. Please visit the operator’s website for further information. All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).