Prepaid Camping Permits are essential
Lake Paluma is a popular camping destination. There are a limited number of camp sites available and you must have a permit. Without a permit you are not guaranteed a camp site.
Council Rangers patrol the area daily. People who camp without a permit can be fined. Camp sites must be vacated by midday on the day of departure.
Schools and large groups are encouraged to use Magar Yamba, the large group camping area.
Notice to the Public
Any person using this lake and adjoining area for swimming, camping, non-motorised boating, or other recreational activity does so at his/her own risk. Townsville City Council accepts no responsibility to any such person for any damage to or loss of property, or any injury caused, contributed to or sustained by that person whether caused by other persons, concealed dangers, or any other cause whatsoever.
Points to remember
- Obtain your pre-paid camping permit before traveling to Lake Paluma.
- Be self-sufficient as basic supplies are 30 minutes away
- All plants and animals are protected.
- Check road and weather conditions before you travel. Strong winds and heavy rainfall can cause road closures.
- Firewood is now available for purchase at Lake Paluma ($10/20kg bundle). Campers can obtain firewood when rangers are on site daily. Campers may supply their own untreated firewood. Collection from surrounding forest is not permitted.
Our online booking system allows you to select a camp site, pay your camping fees and obtain a permit for one or more nights. You may stay up to 12 consecutive nights. The system allows you to book up to 60 days in advance.
When your booking is completed your permit indicates your campsite number and other relevant information. Print this permit and bring it with you when you camp. The permit is confirmation that you have booked and paid for your campsite. The Ranger may request to see your permit at the campground.
You can pay your camping fee by credit card on the online booking system or in person (cash or credit card) at council's Customer Service Centre. Payment on site will incur an additional surcharge.
Please click on this link for our current camping fees.
Camping fees will be refunded or a camping permit of equivalent value issued, provided you give at least seven days notice prior to the date of your booking.
Campers who change their plans and cancel at short notice effectively limit or prevent others from using the allocated camp site.
Council will not refund camping permit fees for circumstances outside of its control, including:
- The occurrence of unfavourable weather, or
- Personal decisions to change plans.
Checklist for campers
We recommend that you take the following items when you go camping at Lake Paluma
- Pre-paid permit
- Waterproof tent and tarp
- Fuel stove
- Torch for walking at night
- Radio (for forecasts) and spare batteries
- Bags for storage and rubbish
- Sufficient non-perishable food, drinking water etc.
- Warm clothing and sturdy shoes
- Raincoat or waterproof jacket
- Insect repellent
- Hat and sunscreen
- Well-stocked first aid kit
- Binoculars, camera and film
- Axe or block splitter
- Fire starters
- Untreated firewood
Camping Terms and Conditions
- A person must not camp at Lake Paluma without a permit.
- A permit is only valid for the camp site and time stated.
- Visitors must obey any lawful instruction given by an authorized officer of Townsville Water.
- No domestic animals are to be taken into or kept at Lake Paluma Reserve, except Guide Dogs.
- All plants, animals and natural and cultural resources are protected and must not be disturbed or damaged.
- Bag and take all your rubbish home with you.
- Do not bury any rubbish or leave it in fireplaces.
- Do not pollute any waterway or Lake with shampoos, soaps, detergents or other substances.
- Firearms and chainsaws are not permitted. Appliances such as axes can only be used to split firewood or drive tent pegs.
- Cooking fires are permitted only in constructed fireplaces and must be extinguished with water before leaving.
- Firewood must not be collected from the surrounding forest. BYO or purchase from site.
- All vehicles must be registered and must only be operated by a licensed driver.
- Vehicles and bicycles should only be driven on constructed roads, parking areas or routes and thoroughfares officially designated for vehicle use. Normal road rules apply.
- Vehicles must only be parked in designated car parking areas.
- Generators, loud music and loud use of vehicles are not permitted.
- To prevent disturbance to other visitors, minimize noise particularly between 9pm and 7am.
- Use toilet facilities provided. Wilderness campers must provide their own suitable camping toilet.
- Leave your campsite as you found it. Do not clear it, dig trenches or disturb vegetation.
- Campsites must be vacated by midday on the day of departure.
ON THE SPOT FINES UP TO $300.00 MAY BE ISSUED FOR INFRINGEMENTS OF THIS LOCAL LAW
The following infomation sheet contains information about camping fees and camping terms and conditions.
Lake Paluma Camping information sheet
For more information, please phone the Customer Service Centre on 1300 878 001 or send an email to Townsville Water.