Australia: The Land Where Time Began

A biography of the Australian continent 

Joseph Banks Conservation Park

What's special?

This historic coastal peninsula near Agnes Water is a little-known jewel on the central Queensland coast. The rocky headland is bounded by ocean on the east and still waters to the west. The estuary side of Round Hill Head was the site of Lieutenant James Cook’s first landing in Queensland on 24 May 1770.

Wind-swept tussock grasslands, small patches of dry vine forest and low woodlands with she-oaks, pandanus, acacias, banksias and eucalypts grow in the park. The surrounding waters are protected in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Exploring Joseph Banks

Enjoy the natural beauty of this picturesque coastal park. Be careful exploring around the beaches. Tragedies have occurred in the unpatrolled waters and walking around the crumbling and uneven cliff edges can be dangerous.

Stop briefly at the rock cairn monument to Cook’s first Queensland landfall then continue 1km up the road to the tracks and lookouts at Round Hill Head. Enjoy the magnificent view north across Eurimbula National Park to Bustard Head and Rodd’s Peninsula.

Watch for turtles and dolphins in the clear aquamarine waters below the lookout. See the occasional migrating humpback whale offshore or white-breasted sea-eagles soaring overhead.

Picnic facilities and toilets are provided just outside the park on the foreshore at the Town of 1770. Camping is not allowed in the park but you can stay nearby at the Town of 1770 and Agnes Water.


Walk 250m through tussock grassland, vine thicket and coastal woodland to a lookout at the tip of the headland. Detour to another lookout over a small sandy cove on your return. The gravel tracks are suitable for strollers but too steep for wheelchairs. Wear a hat and sunscreen.

Getting there

Joseph Banks is at the Town of 1770, just north of Agnes Water. Turn off the Bruce Highway at Miriam Vale. The park office is at the edge of the park 5km north of Agnes Water and 1·5km south of the monument.

Sources & Further reading


Journey Back Through Time
Experience Australia
Aboriginal Australia
National Parks
Photo Galleries
Site Map
                                                                                           Author: M.H.Monroe  Email:     Sources & Further reading