Recreation Areas Management Act 1988 - Queensland

Service summary

Object or Purpose of this legislative Instrument:

To provide for the establishment of a system of recreation areas and in relation to those areas provide, co-ordinate, integrate and improve recreational planning, recreational facilities and recreational management.

Scope of this legislative Instrument:

The Act provides for the coordinated management of recreation areas to:

  • allow the issue of permits for access and use by commercial operators and the general public
  • plan, establish, improve and maintain public recreational facilities and services
  • simplify the legislative requirements for commercial and general use of these areas
  • generate revenue for the management of infrastructure and facilities.

The Act can be applied to multi-tenured lands, subject to the agreement of land owners. There are seven declared recreation areas - Fraser Island, Green Island, Inskip Peninsula, Cooloola, Bribie Island and Moreton Island and Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island).

The following Subordinate Legislation should be examined:

  • Recreation Areas Management Regulation 2007

Service type

Regulatory Obligation

An obligation defined in law. A business must comply with relevant services.

Definition of terms

Commercial activity

A commercial activity is an activity conducted for gain such as:

  • the hire or sale of goods or services,
  • commercial photography
  • a guide tour, safari, scenic flight, cruise or excursion
  • advertising or promoting the use of a recreation area as part of a tour, safari, scenic flight, cruise or excursion
  • advertising or promoting the use of a recreation area as a feature associated with a resort or tourist facility on land adjoining the area.

A commercial activity does not include:

  • an exempt activity; or
  • an exempt media activity.


Appeal process


Compliance Mechanisms and Penalties:

Tour operators may only travel a route within the recreation area specified as a condition of their permit.

Tour operators are required to maintain a daily record which indicates the number of passengers carried and/or camped as part of a tour, prior to entering the recreation area. This record, and associated fees, must be submitted to Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) within 20 days of the end of the month/quarter.

Random checks are carried out to verify the route and number of passengers carried. Authorised officers have the power to require the operator to make the log available for inspection at any time before, during or after a tour.

Breaches of these provisions may result in the issue of on-the-spot infringement notices (fines) or court prosecutions in the Magistrates Court for more serious offences.

An authorised officer may seize, remove and detain any vehicle, vessel or other property believed to have been used in connection with an offence in a recreation area.

Unauthorised structures in a recreation area may be seized, demolished and removed by an authorised officer at the expense of the offender. The offence may be prosecuted in the Magistrates Court.

Review or Appeal Mechanisms:

An authorised officer may, subject to conditions specified by the Act, release a seized item.

An application may also be made to the Magistrates Court for return of a vehicle, vessel or other property seized under the authority of the Act.

Administering agency

Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service

Contact details

Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service
Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service

Mailing address:
PO Box 15187


13 QGOV (13 74 68)


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Supporting information


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