Conway National Park
Get away from it all in a visit to this peaceful park with its rainforest-clad hills, secluded beaches and panoramic outlooks over the scenic Whitsunday Passage.
Getting there and getting around
Conway National Park lies on the Central Queensland coast, between Airlie Beach and Shute Harbour. Turn off the Bruce Highway just north of Proserpine, or 65km south of Bowen, then travel 26km to Airlie Beach. Do not take the turnoff to Conway Beach as there is no access to the park from Conway township.
From Airlie Beach, follow Shute Harbour Road south-east and travel 2.5km to the QPWS Whitsunday Information Centre. It is a further 4km to the Conway picnic ground.
To explore the park on foot, you can leave your car here, at the Swamp Bay/ Mt Rooper carpark or at the Coral Beach carpark on The Beak.
Conway National Park boasts a number of walking tracks, which take you through a variety of vegetation types including lowland rainforest, mangroves and open forest. Take the Mt Rooper track for spectacular Whitsunday Passage and island views. You can only access the Swamp Bay camping area on foot.
This 22,500ha park includes the rainforest-clad Conway Peninsula and protects the largest area of lowland tropical rainforest in Queensland outside Tropical North Queensland. Hoop pines grow on coastal ridges and in damp gullies, emerging above the rainforest canopy. Rugged, steep, rocky cliffs provide a spectacular 35km-long backdrop to the Whitsunday Passage and islands.
Dry vine thicket, mangroves, open forests with a grasstree understorey, paperbark and pandanus woodlands, and patches of lowland rainforest with twisted vines grow in the park. It is home to two of Australia's mound-building birds, the Australian brush-turkey and the orange-footed scrubfowl.
The park’s vegetation is very similar to that on the Whitsunday Islands because thousands of years ago the sea level rose, drowning coastal valleys and creating the islands. For thousands of years, the Ngaro and Gia people roamed these forests, harvesting the riches of the forests and the adjoining sea country. Today the adjacent waters are protected in marine parks.
Bush camp beside a secluded, pebbly beach overlooking Daydream (West Molle) Island at the Swamp Bay camping area. This walk-in camping area is a 2.1km walk from the Swamp Bay/Mt Rooper carpark. You cannot access the camping area by car. A pit toilet, picnic tables and a shelter shed are provided. Take a fuel stove for cooking, as open fires are not permitted.
Bins are not provided so remember to pack a sealable container to take your rubbish with you when you leave.
No drinking water is available, so ensure you take at least five litres per person per day and extra for emergencies.
Picnic and day use areas
Stop for a picnic at the Conway picnic ground or walk to the Swamp Bay campground. Toilets, a shelter shed and picnic tables are provided at both areas. Conway picnic area also has electric barbecues.
It is possible to fish from the beach at Swamp Bay and Coral Beach. Waters adjoining Conway National Park form part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Coast Park and regulations apply.
QPWS Airlie Beach
Whitsunday Information Centre
Cnr Shute Harbour and Mandalay Roads
PO Box 332, Airlie Beach QLD 4802
ph (07) 4936 0511
fax (07) 4936 2212