Marine Parks

Just like our national parks on land, marine sanctuaries provide protection for wildlife and habitats, so that we can all enjoy them for generations to come.

Our oceans are overused and underprotected. Add your voice to the call to save our marine sanctuaries.

Australia has an ocean territory twice the size of our land. Our oceans are the third-largest and most diverse on the planet.

Just off our shores we have the largest single reef − the Great Barrier Reef − and the largest seagrass meadow (Shark Bay, Western Australia) on the planet. We also have the third-largest area of mangroves and more than half of the world’s mangrove and seagrass species.

Our oceans provide refuge for a diversity of species including:

  • six of the seven known species of marine turtles,
  • 45 of the world’s 78 whale and dolphin species, and
  • 4,000 fish species — 20 per cent of the global total.

Marine parks are an important tool in the toolbox of ocean conservation – helping reduce stress on marine ecosystems.

As well as establishing networks of marine parks we need to ensure that we tread lightly on our oceans. We need to reduce land-based pollution, have sustainable fisheries and take action to address climate pollution.

Our Federal Government has slashed our historic sanctuary protections - carving up our marine parks and giving them to destructive commercial fishing and oil and gas exploration.

Almost 40 million hectares of marine sanctuaries — an area almost twice the size of Victoria — were lost. We must fight to restore our historic network of marine parks.
Help us protect our special places for generations to come.

The Save Our Marine Life Campaign

How Marine Parks Protect Our Oceans

Anyone can enter marine sanctuaries and enjoy activities like boating, swimming, snorkelling and diving — but wildlife and their habitats are fully protected from extractive industries such as fishing and oil and gas exploration. They are places where sea life is safe and people can see nature at its best.

Marine sanctuary zones are vital for the protection of the ocean's rich diversity of life. They allow fish to spawn and grow, provide unspoilt natural sites where people can visit and offer areas for education and research. Marine sanctuaries offer a way to protect our unique, vulnerable marine life such as turtles, sharks and dugongs and the habitats on which they depend.

The equation is simple — if you leave fish to breed and replenish, over time there will be greater numbers of bigger fish. It’s been proven: just two years after the sanctuary zones were expanded on the Great Barrier Reef in 2004, scientists found that Coral Trout had increased by 60% in the protected areas.

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Explore Our Australian Marine Parks

Commonwealth Marine Parks

Australia made history by declaring the world’s largest network of marine parks and sanctuaries.

New South Wales Marine Parks

Warm tropical currents meet and mix with cool temperate seas in our New South Wales Marine Parks.

Northern Territory Marine Parks

Our Northern Territory coastline includes some of the last healthy tropical waters in the world.

Queensland Marine Parks

Queensland is home to spectacular, world class marine parks, with more species than any other state.

South Australian Marine Parks

South Australia is home to seals and sealions, whales, sharks, the leafy sea dragon and more!

Tasmanian Marine Parks

Climate, ocean currents, and Tasmania’s southerly location create one of the most biodiverse places.

Victorian Marine Parks

Over 80% of all marine plants and animals in southern Australian waters are found nowhere else.

Western Australia

17 marine parks in Western Australia include Ningaloo Reef, Shark Bay and the new Kimberley parks.