Roonga Point Campground (Free Camp)

Address: The Esplanade, Punsand Bay
Location Description: Access to the track is on the left hand side of Punsand Bay Road if you are heading North.
Cost: Free
Type: Campground
Website:
Features:
  • Tents
  • Camper Trailers
  • Caravans
  • 4WD Access
  • Dog Friendly
  • Generators
  • Fires Permitted
  • Phone Reception
  • Crocodiles
  • Marine Stingers
  • Dingos
  • Alcohol Restrictions
  • Fishing
  • Bush Walking
  • Look Out
  • Motor Bikes
  • Horse Riding

Description:

This is a magical location with a view over the Torres Strait to islands like Roko Island and Possession Island. During the dry season the camp area is mostly protected from the prevailing winds making it a nice place to camp.

The campground is 4wd access only however you would be able to tow in a tinny, offroad camper trailer or small offroad caravan. The sand is quite soft in places.

Being bush camping there is no allocated camping areas, people have made campsites all along the waterfront on the road in however, at the end of the road there is a large area that has cleared for camping. When selecting a site ensure that you consider the high tide line and be aware that crocodiles are known to be in the area.

– Small campsites along the road are either sand or grass (depending on time of year), they vary in size, but a limited number of those are large enough for camper trailers or groups. The outlooks of most of these sites are straight over the ocean to the islands.

– Campsites in the main camping area are mostly sand based and they also vary in size but most are large enough to have a group or larger trailers. The area has sufficient shade from small trees, the area is adjacent to a creek which is lined with mangroves.

– Campsites on the hill are dirt based but with lots of little rocks. There are a number of sites that would only be suitable for a small tent, swag or rooftop tent etc but there is a larger area at the top that is open and overlooks the water. Definitely suitable for small groups or larger campers. Some of the tracks were not well maintained when we visited and one in particular required 4wd power to get up. The waterfront can still be accessed by walking a short distance down the hill. This would be my pick as it has the awesome views with the safety of being quite elevated.

There are no facilities, drinking water or rubbish disposal so; you will need to have the capacity to manage this yourself. Keep in mind that there are wild pigs that dig up toilet paper so make sure you burn it. 

The nearest town is Bamaga but ‘Cape York Camping – Punsand Bay’ is close by and has a very limited range of supplies from their campground shop.

If you are going to have a fire please keep to the existing firepits.

As for our little friends that like to bite we were there in the middle of the day and did not have any issues. In saying that the main camping area is surrounded by mangroves so they may be an issue and being on the water there is always the risk of midges and sandflies.

On the shoreline you can see a lot of marine debris that has washed ashore. Take a spare bag and some gloves and walk along the beach (be croc wise),  you can find some interesting ‘keepers’ and it doesn’t hurt to get another bag of debris off the beach. On our trip we found a wrecked carved out boat, a brand new boat fender and lots of odd shaped bottles that could be used as decorations once cleaned up.

The closest toilet dumpsite and water to fill your tanks is located in Bamaga.

For details on the alcohol restrictions in this area visit the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Partnerships.

This is another one of the amazing bush camping areas that is covered by the Jardine River Ferry fee.


About The Area:

Much of the history of the area has not been documented in detail or has been lost over the years, but there are still the decaying relics of times gone by in the area. The area was used for mining tin and gold and abandoned mines can be found through the region. Roonga Point was once a tin scratchers (small time prospector) camp, supplies and mail were delivered by boat to the hardened people that worked in the harsh conditions of Cape York in search of fortunes.

Cape York played a significant part in WWII and there is evidence of the war scattered throughout the Cape. As you walk around near the actual point you will find the remains of a WWII workshop site. Defence forces in the area needed to be self-sufficient so it was used to service earth moving equipment and vehicles. The size of the engine block that can be found in the mangrove is possibly evidence that it was quite a substantial site.


Nearby Attractions:

Whilst you are staying at Roonga Point why not take some time to check out these local attractions:
- The most northern point of mainland Australia (just a reminder lol..)
- The site of the original Jardine Homestead at Somerset
- Jardine Family & Pearl Divers Graves at Somerset Beach
- The Abandon Pajinka Wilderness Lodge on your way out to the tip
- Take a drive along the magical 5 beaches run
- Some souvenir shopping at The Croc Tent on Pajinka Road
- Enjoy a woodfired pizza at Cape York Camping in Punsand Bay


Closest Town And Distance: Bamaga, Cape York – 28 km Cape York Camping & Punsand Bay – 4.5km

What We Liked: What we liked most about this campground was the location. It is a great spot to have as a base whilst you explore the most northern attractions. It has a scenic view, close to the tip and supposedly good fishing. It is also close enough to duck over to Punsand Bay for a pizza.

What We Didn't Like: Having the most awesome water, but you cannot swim in it hurts.

Video Review:

Photos:

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