Chilli Beach day-use area
At the northern end of the Chilli Beach camping area, lounge over a restful picnic in the shade, enjoying the cooling sea breeze and panoramic ocean views. Explore the dunes on the Chilli Beach forest walk or step out onto the famous white quartz sands of Chilli Beach’s sweeping coastline, which stretches between Cape Griffith and Cape Weymouth.
Watch seabirds soaring gracefully overhead. Stroll to the northern end of the beach and fossick among debris washed up by ocean currents from as far away as Vanuatu and the Philippines. Cast a fishing line from the shore or take the boat out for a day’s fishing.
Kutini-Payamu (Iron Range) National Park (CYPAL) is jointly managed by the Northern Kuuku Ya'u Kanthanampu Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC Land Trust and the Queensland Government.
At a glance
Getting there and getting around
The Chilli Beach day-use area is in Kutini-Payamu (Iron Range) National Park (CYPAL), about 200km north of Coen on Cape York Peninsula.
- From the park entrance, drive 36.9km along Portland Roads Road to the Chilli Beach turn-off, then drive a further 6km to the day-use area.
- You can access the park from the south via the Peninsula Developmental Road or from the north via the challenging and unpredictable Frenchmans Track.
- For both routes, you need a high clearance 4WD with recovery gear and extra supplies; and you need to be proficient in four-wheel driving.
- On Frenchmans Track your vehicle also needs a snorkel; and you should be experienced in challenging 4WD conditions.
- If you're towing a trailer, take the Peninsula Developmental Road route; neither route is suitable for towing caravans.
- To book camping at the self-service booking facility at the ranger base, drive 14km along Portland Roads Road and turn right into Lockhart River Road. The ranger base is 2.5km along this road.
- Alcohol restrictions are in place in many of Queensland's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and apply to the towns and areas around Kutini-Payamu (Iron Range) National Park (CYPAL). For the latest information on restrictions, see Community alcohol limits. The camping areas in the park are outside the alcohol restriction zone.
- Read 4WD with care for important information on 4WD safety and minimal impact driving.
Peninsula Developmental Road
Turn off the Peninsula Developmental Road onto Portland Roads Road, 35km north of the Archer River Roadhouse (175km south-west of Weipa), and drive 83km along this well-formed gravel road to the park entrance.
Turn off the Telegraph Road onto Frenchmans Track, 22km south of Moreton Telegraph Station, and drive 52km to the intersection with Portland Roads Road, then turn left onto Portland Roads Road and travel a further 13km to the park entrance.
Park at the day-use area.
Fuel and supplies
Food, fuel and mechanical services are available at Lockhart River, 10.5km from the intersection of Portland Roads Road and Lockhart River Road.
There are no wheelchair-accessible facilities.
When to visit
Chilli Beach day-use area is open 24 hours a day.
Check park alerts for the latest information on access, closures and conditions.
The park may be closed during the wetter summer months.
Climate and weather
Cape York Peninsula has a tropical climate. During the wetter months (December to April), the area can be deluged by heavy monsoonal rains and roads can become impassable for extended periods, preventing access to the park. The best time to visit is during the drier months of May to November. Extremes of climatic and seasonal variations prevail. Winter temperatures can drop below 10°C and summer temperatures can soar above 40°C. Daily variation at any time of the year seldom exceeds 15°C. The weather from October to November can be very hot and thunderstorms are common.
Permits and fees
- If you are planning a school excursion or organising a group event such as a wedding, fun run or adventure training, you may need an organised event permit. Maximum group sizes and other conditions apply depending on location and activity type.
Domestic animals are not allowed here.
Staying in touch
Mobile phone coverage
Unreliable. Check with your service provider for more information.
- Parks are natural environments and conditions can be unpredictable. You are responsible for your own safety and for looking after the park.
- Avoid lingering under coconut trees loaded with fruit as coconuts can drop heavily.
Read stay safe and visit with care for important general information about safety, caring for parks and essentials to bring when you visit Queensland’s national parks.
- Open fires are allowed (except when fire bans apply) in existing fireplaces only. Fuel stoves recommended..
- Read camp with care for tips on camping safely and camping softly.
- Take all your rubbish with you when you leave.
- There is a rubbish pit on Portland Roads Road, near the turn off to Chilli Beach.
- Collect bore water from the roadside tank 1km from Chilli Beach or from a tap at the Iron Range ranger base.
- Treat all water before use.
- Read walk with care for tips on walking safely and walking lightly.
Fishing and boating
- You can fish from Chilli Beach but you're not allowed to wet a line in any of the freshwater rivers or creeks in the park.
- When the weather is calm, you can launch your boat from Chilli Beach, otherwise, launch your boat from ramps at Portland Roads, Quintal Beach in Lockhart River township and Claudie River just south of the Lockhart River township.
- The waters adjacent to Kutini-Payamu (Iron Range) National Park (CYPAL) are in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park.
- Before heading out on the water make sure you have a zoning map, know the zones and what's allowed there. Be croc-wise in croc country.
- Fisheries regulations apply. You can obtain information on bag and size limits, restricted species and seasonal closures from Fisheries Queensland.
- Beware marine stingers.
- Read boat and fish with care for tips on boating and fishing safety and caring for parks.
- Try to keep your bulb wattage to 30 or less. This will increase the chance of finding animals (by not warning them) and will extend your viewing time.
- Use a white light to explore the forest then add a red or orange filter (cellophane works) to view wildlife.
- Bring your binoculars to get a good view.
- Be quiet and keep your lights off nesting birds.