Applying for a marine parks permit

Before applying please read:

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority – application

If your proposed activities occur within the Commonwealth Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, apply for a marine park permit using GBRMPA Permits Online.

A joint permit may be issued if your proposed activities occur within both the Commonwealth Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park.

To learn more please read GBRMPA - Permits.

State Marine Parks – application

For activities within one or more of Queensland’s State Marine Parks:

  • Great Sandy Marine Park
  • Moreton Bay Marine Park
  • Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park

applications are now completed online using Online Services.

If you would like to discuss your proposed activity before you apply, you can request a free pre-lodgement meeting.

To learn more please read about Online Services.

Tourism and vessel charter – Great Sandy Marine Park and Moreton Bay Marine Park

For tourism and vessel charter programs operating in the Great Sandy or Moreton Bay Marine Parks, you have the option to apply for a standard ‘off the shelf’ permit. Key features of this permit include:

  • simple application form
  • reduced assessment times
  • 6-year permit term
  • wide range of access to most areas of the Marine Parks
  • range of activities and no restriction on the number of vessels that may be used.

To find out more, read the information sheet (PDF, 360KB) or apply online using Online Services.

See an example of a completed standard tourism and vessel charter permit for Moreton Bay Marine Park (PDF, 2.9 MB) or Great Sandy Marine Park (PDF, 1.5 MB) .

Supporting information

Please provide as much information as possible on your activities to support your application. Documentation that may be required to assess your application includes maps of where the activity is proposed to take place, additional information describing the activity, environmental impact statements and management plans, and drawings of any proposed structure.

Public liability insurance and indemnity

You will not be issued with a CAP unless you have all of the following types of insurance cover, and maintain this cover for the duration of the permit:

Application assessment

Any activity in the Marine Park that requires permission is subject to an assessment against legislative criteria. There are two assessment types:

  • Standard assessment – impacts of the activities proposed have been assessed against legislative criteria as low risk if conducted in accordance with standard permit conditions.
  • Non-standard assessment – the specific details of the activity will be assessed against legislative criteria in relation to environmental, cultural and social values of the marine park.

Please note: You must be issued with a permit before you can begin your activity in the marine park.

To learn more about the GBRMPA assessment process go to GBRMPA - How we assess applications.

Application processing time

Please allow a minimum of 60 business days for a valid application to be processed, although no compulsory timeframe applies. If more information is required, it may take an additional 20 business days to process your application.

Permit fees

Fees generally do not apply to state marine park permit applications, other than for commercial whale watching agreement. Fees are outlined in the Marine Parks Regulation 2017.

Amending marine park permits

If you would like to change any details stated on your permit including the activities and locations listed, you will need to apply to have your permit amended using Online Services.

In your application please provide a detailed description of and justification for the requested changes.

Renewing marine park permits

To apply to continue your existing marine park permit, you must complete the state only application through Online Services and submit it before the permit expires. If you submit an application prior to expiration, your existing marine park permit will remain active while the new application is being considered.

Transfer of marine park permits

Marine park permits may be transferred. An online application form must be submitted by the proposed transferee. A letter or email from the current permit holder stating their intention to transfer or sell the permit, and the proposed transferee stating their intention to receive or purchase it, must also be submitted. The transferee must be a suitable person to hold a permit.

Marine Park permit holder returns

Tourism and vessel charter permit holders are required to submit a return of operations to the department on a quarterly basis.

Returns are now lodged through Online Services

To learn more about how to complete returns read the tours and returns information sheet (PDF, 1.98MB).

Contact us

Contact us to discuss your proposed activities or for more information on fees, timeframes and supporting documentation required.

Great Sandy Marine Park and Moreton Bay Marine Park contact QPWS

Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park (including Island National Parks) contact QPWS

Great Barrier Reef (Commonwealth) Marine Park contact GBRMPA
Website: GBRMPA