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Torres Strait Islands

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The Torres Strait Islands are a large group of Islands in the far north of Queensland in the Arafura Sea and within this group there is a smaller group of Islands called the Thursday Island Group, with the main islands being – Wednesday Island, Thursday Island, Friday Island, Prince of Wales Island, Hammond Island & Horn Island.

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There are in excess of 200 islands, and they are located north of the Cape York Peninsula and go up to the Papua New Guinea border.

Of all these islands, less than 5 are open to anyone, with the others only available to islanders who originated from either Melanesia or Polynesia; please ensure that respect is always given to the locals and their customs and do not attempt to intrude on any local ceremony without invitation and in the same vein, do not refuse any food offered at any ceremony you may be invited to.

Both the islands and their surrounding reefs are home to a multitude of marine life, which includes dolphins, dugongs, giant marlin & sea turtles.

Thursday Island is the most popular of these islands, which offers a variety of accommodation and there’re daily commercial flights and local ferry services. It is approximately 3 square kilometres in size with a population of 2,500. It is both the commercial & administrative centre for these islands and offers:-

· Bakery

· Banks

· Café

· Cultural Centre

· Newsagent

· Pharmacy

· Shops

· Swimming Pool

· Restaurants

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Prince of Wales Island is the largest of the Torres Strait Islands, and connects the Coral Sea to the Arafura Sea and is northwest of the Cape York Peninsula. It is approximately 180 sq metres in size and offers the following beaches:-

  • Big Buttertin Beach - 2,189kms north west of Brisbane on Prince of Wales Island and 6kms north north east is Friday Island.
  • Little Beach - 2,189kms north north west of Brisbane on Prince of Wales Island and 6kms north east is Friday Island.
  • Long Beach - 2,188kms north west of Brisbane on Prince of Wales Island - (Muralug Island - native name), and 8kms north east is Friday Island.

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Is the largest of the Torres Strait Islands and is governed by Torres Shire Council which is located on Thursday Island, with most of the land being returned to the Kaurareg People who are the traditional owners of this island.

This island is mainly Crown Land and its primary use is as a recreational destination for those on Thursday Island, with the western side being government camping and reserves.

Whilst the Island is home to numerous families it does not cater to traditional standards with respect to there not being any running water, electricity and sewerage outlets, this is compensated by the use of generators, water tanks and rubbish being removed daily by contractors.

  • Terry Beach - 2,183kms north north west of Brisbane on the Prince of Wales Island and 12kms north north east is Friday Island.

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