Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park – A Truly Unique Place

Sunrise with the Kangaroos and Wallabies at Cape Hillsborough is a Hero experience and widely considered a ‘must see’ for anybody visiting the Mackay Region. Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park is in a unique position to be able to offer its guests an unforgettable experience, with everything from gentle strolls along the shore line, to more challenging bush walks and of course the spectacular sunrises on the beach with our wildlife. 

With a strong family focus, we aim to give every guest the most memorable experience possible. Many of our guests first came here as children themselves, and are now bringing their children, and even their grandchildren. It’s here that memories are made, family traditions upheld, and friendships begun.

Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park is more than just a holiday destination – it’s a story waiting to be told.

Cape Hillsborough was formed over 30 million years ago, and is the starting point of the Cosgrove volcano chain, the longest chain of volcanoes in the world at three times the length of Yellowstone in the United States. Remnants of these long extinct volcanoes contribute to the rugged landscape waiting to be explored by our guests. 

The four well maintained walking trails easily accessible from the Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park take guests through 10 distinct types of vegetation communities, from Mangrove and Salt Pan groves, to Hoop Pine forests and Paperbark woodlands. Along the way, guests will see hundreds of different forms of vegetation, the view gradually changing as you walk from one community to the next. Each of these walks, suitable for most ages and fitness levels, holds its own unique charm, with new experiences around each corner. Andrews Point, for example has stunning lookouts over the ocean, while walking the Yuibera Plant Trail will showcase the area’s rich cultural heritage. 

And then there is our spectacular wildlife. From the famous Eastern Grey Kangaroos and Agile Wallabies, to bright, tiny fireflies, visitors to Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park can see them all during their stay. One of the most unique features of our park is the fact that many species of local wildlife appear withing the Tourist Park and interact passively with our guests, going about their daily business with little interest in humans. These include 22 species of mammals, 25 different reptiles, and around 8 amphibian species. Marine turtles also visit the area, and there are an abundance of fish and other marine life, thanks to the Tourist Parks Net Free Zone. The trees and skies of the Tourist Park abound with around 25 butterfly species and over 135 types of birds. 

A stay at Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park is a truly memorable experience – and a fantastic way to showcase this jewel in the crown of the Mackay Region. 

Come join us soon and let our story become part of you story. 

Ariel of park

Wildlife of Cape Hillsborough

In each habitat, many animals may be encountered. From the barnacle-encrusted rocks of Wedge Island, to the vine strewn rainforests of Hidden Valley, there is quite a change in fauna. 

Along the foreshore, the wildlife may be difficult to see. Some, like the Brittle Stars, live under rocks while others, such as Barnacles, shelter within a hard skeleton. On the beach, look for Sand Dollars, small flat sea urchins that leave a trail as they move through the sand. Also seen are the Sand Baller and Ghost Crabs. A moonlight stroll along the beach is always delightful to see these crabs scurrying around in search of food.

In the forest, the first animal you will probably see is the Australian Scrub Turkey (also known as the Brush Turkey or Bush Turkey). These are large black birds with a reed head and yellow collar. These birds are usually found strutting around the Tourist Park and picnic area. They are related to the Jungle Fowl which is also found in the park.

Many other birds live at Cape Hillsborough. Some are migratory and visit only for a few months of the year. Early morning is the best time to observe birds. More than 136 species of birds have so far been identified in the National Park.

Cape Hillsborough National Park is also home to a colony of 150-200 Ghost Bats, one of four colonies identified in Queensland. They occupy at least three caves in the park during winter. Also observed at Cape Hillsborough are approximately 22 mammals, 25 reptiles, and 8 amphibians.

The Eastern Grey Kangaroos and the many types of Wallabies found in the park belong to a type of mammal called Macropods. The most common wallaby is the Agile (Sandy) Wallaby and Whip-Tail (Pretty face) Wallaby. The shy Brush Tail Rock Wallaby can sometimes be seen in November on the far side of the beach. Cape Hillsborough is very unique as visitors are given a rare treat of viewing kangaroos and wallabies on the beach most mornings. It is believed they go down to the beach to enjoy nibbling the seedpods which wash up onto the beach. 

There are approximately 25 species of butterflies within Cape Hillsborough National Park including the magnificent Ulysses or Mountain Blue. Butterflies such as the Blue Tiger also live at Cape Hillsborough and can be seen in large numbers during winter. 

 

Bird mostly yellow 

Top 10 items to bring camping for a great weekend away

Coming to Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park to camp?

Here’s THE TOP 10 items you’ll want to bring for a great weekend away 

1. Blankets & pillows 🛏 Bring them to reception and get cozy while we screen a movie on our outdoor cinema 

2. Sunscreen ☀ SLIP SLOP SLAP (Available for purchase at reception) 

3. Insect repellent 🐜 (Available for purchase at reception)

4. Togs and towel 🌊 For when you go to the beach, fishing or using our new twin water slides  

5. Torch 🔦  we suggest bringing a torch or head lamp for early wake ups or late nights 

6. Fold out camp chair/s 💺

7. Camera 📸 Make sure you tag us in your photos on Facebook and Instagram

8. Food and drinks 🥖🍷 (Available for purchase from our Diner

9. Fridge or Esky (Ice available for purchase at reception)

10. Good pair of shoes for hikes and adventuring 👟 Appropriate footwear is needed if you decide to adventure to Orchid Rock, make sure you aim for low tide or come see us at reception for more adventure tips 🙂 

What’s the 1 thing you never forget to take camping with you?

Group campingPhantom Photography 

3 ways to turn screen time into family holiday time

 

1. Jump off the couch and into the water 🌊

You have the option of the beautiful ocean at your door step or our new twin water slide! 💦

 

2. Walk away from technology and walk our bush trails instead 🌲

Did you know we have FOUR walking trails to choose from?

Andrews Point, Beachcomber Cove, Yuibera Plant Trail and Diversity Boardwalk, p.s. If you walk Andrews point trail aim for low tide and you can walk across to wedge island, but make sure you wear appropriate shoes 👟

 

3. Put down the phone, pick up mini golf 

Purchase a $5 day pass at reception and help yourselves to mini golf and more at Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park!

 

3 ways to turn screen time into family holiday time

DISCONNECT TO RECONNECT 

 

Tourism Awards

The tourism award season has rolled around once again. This year Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park has taken the opportunity to enter in both the Mackay and Queensland Tourism Awards. This is an exciting venture and opportunity to be able to showcase and display our slice of paradise to a number of tourism entities.

The presentation ceremony of the Mackay Tourism awards has recently taken place. We were thrilled to be awarded Gold in the Caravan and Holiday Parks category. It’s not only rewarding but heart-warming to be recognised amongst the top tourism operations in our region.

In the coming weeks the award ceremony for the Queensland Tourism Awards will take place. This is an exciting chance to be able to compete against some of Queensland’s very best caravan and holiday parks. As well as showcase and recognise other organisations and individuals in the tourism sector.

As a part of the Queensland Tourism Awards Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Parks story has been captured by the team at Tourism Tribe in a Media Release which can be found in the following link.

https://www.tourismtribe.com/stories/the-story-behind-cape-hillsborough-nature-tourist-park-in-cape-hillsborough-australia/

Mackay Region - Tourism Award logo

Our success and nomination in both the Mackay and Queensland Tourism Awards would not be possible without the support of each and every one of our guests. We thank you greatly, and hopefully we can bring home the Queensland GOLD to share with you all.

 

Queensland’s 100 Faces of Small Businesses

We would like to congratulate our spectacular business owner Renae on being recognised as one of Queensland’s 100 Faces of Small Businesses in 2018.

Renae has been recognised alongside her husband Ben for their efforts in creating a tourist park that encapsulates the key view points and interest of the local area. With a particular focus on the Cape Hillsborough National Park and iconic beach that hugs Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park.

100 Faces of Small Businesses is an initiative designed by the Queensland Government. Aimed at ensuring Queensland stays a place which small businesses can start, grow and employ. This is something that Renae and Ben strive to do. Remaining local and supporting local.

Ben and Renae purchase the then title resort in 2012. Putting their thoughts together to create a place that encapsulates and shows of the beautiful surrounds of the park. Resulting in the creation of Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park.

Renae and Ben have a strong focus on being Eco-friendly and respecting and nurturing the environment. Just recently the park has become a wildlife carer, caring for native animals which have been injured, sick or orphaned, until they can be released into the care of the national park. Recently taking on the responsibility and care of two beautiful Agile Wallabies, Harriett and Meghan. Renae and Ben’s hard work and dedication has allowed the park to jump in leaps and bounds over the short 6 years which they have called it home.

Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park, has something for everyone from the young to the young at heart. With a variety of accommodation options available from family and couple cabins to powered and un-powered camp sites. We highly recommend you jump on to our website and check out everything that is on offer at our fantastic nature park.

Once again Renae, Congratulations on this outstanding achievement of being named as one of Queensland’s 100 Faces of Small Businesses!

Renae Atherton, Owner of Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park

Rainy Day Activities

When it’s raining some of your camping adventure plans can get dampened. Fear not though, you can still enjoy your camping trip! Below we have collated a number of activities which you and your family can enjoy while the weather is not so sunny (days like today).

1. Play board games – In the TV and reading lounge we have a number of board game which you can borrow and use during your stay.

2. Make hot chocolates – Nothing warms you up more than a hot chocolate on a cold rainy day.

3. Make you way to the Cape Hillsborough Diner – Enjoy a freshly brewed coffee and perhaps a delicious sweet treat. Or you can opt for some lunch available between 10am and 2pm daily.

4. Tell stories – Reminisce old camping stories and share your experience with other campers.

5. Play card games – Get your competitive side out and see who the best card player is.

6. Have a movie marathon – Indulge in all your favourite movies, while you sit back and listen to the rain fall.

7. Go for a rainy-day stroll once the clouds disappear – everything looks so different during and after rain, see what animals and creatures emerge or what watering holes appear.

8. Read a good book – In our reading and TV lounge we have a book sharing library, where you can borrow books to read during your stay at Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park.

9. Play Ping Pong, Pool or Mini Golf, the choice is yours – visit us at reception and find out how 🙂 

Rainy days like these are the perfect opportunity for you and your family to disconnect and reconnect with each other whilst listening and enjoying mother nature.

Summer Safety Tips

Summer is the perfect time of the year to head to the beach and try and beat the Australian summer heat. Although heading to beach is the best part of summer, it is also time to remember and refresh yourself and your family on some summer safety tips. Thus, ensuring your beach experience is remembered for all the right reasons.

10 Summer Safety Tips
  1. Slip on a shirt, slop on some sunscreen, slap on a hat, slide on some sunnies, slurp lots of water, seek some shade.
  2. When entering the water wear light clothing, as heavy clothing can affect your ability to swim.
  3. If in doubt, don’t go out. Assess the ocean and your ability to swim before entering the water.
  4. Avoid swimming in the ocean at dusk, dawn or during the night. Only swim in pools if the area is well lit.
  5. Do not consume alcohol and swim or engage in any maritime activity.
  6. Never go fishing or swimming alone, safety in numbers.
  7. Be vigilant when exploring rock pools, sea creatures still inhabit these areas.
  8. Read all the safety signs.
  9. Always enter the water slowly feet first. You never know how deep the water is or what could be lurking below.
  10. When visiting the natural environment remember to only take photographs and leave only footprints’, thus ensuring the delicate ecosystem is not disturbed.

Summer is the perfect time of the year to have fun in the sun at the beach. Follow these 10 tips as a guideline to ensuring your holiday experience is a rememberable one.

Summer safety tips have been adapted from: Surf Life Saving Queensland Fact Sheet  and Water Safety Handbook 8th Edition.

Bugs and Bites

Bugs and Bites, What would camping be without them? Probably more enjoyable or less itchy you may be thinking? Well your probably right.

But if you choose to go camping its one of the factors that you have to be mindful of as we are holidaying in their natural environment. Unfortunately, there is no real cure for these unwanted biting creatures. However, there are a number of things you can do to help prevent the unwanted itchiness.

  1. Sand flies inhabit low lying areas, therefore there first point of attack is the ankles and legs. To avoid an attack, try wearing socks or light coloured, summer clothing as sand flies are attracted to darker colours.
  2. Sand flies don’t like windy areas, try to move around or gather where a breeze is present.
  3. Our unwanted friends are more active at dawn and dusk, keep this in mind if you have a serve reaction.
  4. When camping ensure you secure your fly screens on your tent, swag, camper or caravan as sand flies can quite easily find small gaps.
  5. Use a bug repellent or even try baby oil this creates a layer on the skin which prevents sand flies from being able to penetrate and irritate the skin.

Below we have created a list of repellents and remedies:

Repellents

  • Baby oil
  • Insect repellent
  • Eucalyptus oil
  • Tea tree oil
  • Any form of oil body lotion can form a layer of protection.
  • Kelalan Sandfly repellent (available from our shop)

Remedies:

  • Calamine lotion
  • Aloe Vera
  • Kelalan Itch and Bite Relief (available from our shop)

Don’t let the bugs ruin your camping trip, they are all a part of the experience.

Happy Camping!!!

Top 10 Family Activities to do at Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park

Planning your next family trip to Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park?

Looking for some activities to do during your stay to get the family out and about. Below we have collated some of our favourite things, for you and your family to do on your next trip to Cape Hillsborough!

  1. See the Kangaroos and Wallabies on the beach at sunrise.
  2. Venture the four walking trails, admiring the local wildlife – birds and butterflies.
  3. Try spotting Turtles or Whales during there migration season (Best viewing spot is on the Andrews Walking Trial at Turtle Lookout).
  4. Walk to Wedge Island at low tide and explore the watering holes and the creatures that call these pools home.
  5. Explore the coastline for hidden caves.
  6. Adventure through the National Park finding hidden watering holes and destinations.
  7. Play some beach soccer or cricket with the family.
  8. Go for a swim in the ocean or drop a line and try your luck at fishing.
  9. Get creative and build a cubby house on the beach.
  10. Enjoy a delicious lunch at the Cape Hillsborough Diner to refuel to keep exploring the area.

While you are out adventuring and exploring The Cape Hillsborough area, make sure you pack your camera or phone to snap that picture-perfect shot! And don’t forget to share it with us on our social media platforms – Instagram and or Facebook. We love seeing the new places which you explore or discover whilst visiting us here at Cape Hillsborough Nature Tourist Park. #capehillsboroughnaturetouristpark 

Playing cricket on the beach