Churchill Island Marine National Park


Churchill Island Marine National Park

Protected from the wind and waves of Bass Strait by Phillip Island the Churchill Island Marine National Park (670 ha) is one of three Marine National Parks in Western Port and is located south of Rhyll on the eastern shore of Phillip Island.  

Churchill Island Marine National Park protects its saltmarsh and mangrove fringes, cobble and shingle beaches, extensive sheltered intertidal mudflats, seagrass beds, subtidal soft sediments, and deep tidal channels. These habitats support a wide variety of support algae, invertebrates, fish, and bird communities that depend on the parks sheltered environment. 

Churchill Island Marine National Park is heavily influenced by tidal activities that expose and submerge large expanses of mudflats and associated seagrass beds. These provide a foraging habitat for migratory waders with the park forming part of the Western Port Ramsar Site and the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, recognising it as a wetland of international significance for migratory birds.  The surrounding saltmarsh and mangroves provide roosting areas for a wide range of seabirds and shorebirds. 

The majority of the Marine National Park is subtidal soft sediments covered in shallow areas with dense beds of seagrass and algae. Fish associated with the subtidal sediments and channels include stingrays, perch, flathead, and gobies.  

Within the deeper sections of the park dense populations of the highly unusual and rare ‘living fossil’ lampshell or brachiopod Megalania flavescent are found on the subtidal sediments and in tidal channels which also provide a habitat for a range of fish and invertebrate species, including a high abundance of the sea pen Sarcostyles grandis. 

Things To Do

Hooded Plovers on a rock

Churchill Island birdwatching

The mudflats within Churchill Island Marine National Park provde impoartnat feedig areas for a wide range of wader birds including many migratory species which can be seen from viewing points on Churchill Island and access tracks.

Tide watching at Churchill Island

The large tidal ranges in Western Port create big changes in the environment and watching the water rush in and out as the tides rise and fall from one of the bridges to Churchill Island or from the walking tracks is really interesting to see.



Tours and adventure experiences in parks

One of the best ways you can get into nature is with a Licensed Tour Operator.

There are more than 400 Licensed Tour Operators across Victoria who are ready and waiting to help you experience and connect with Victoria’s spectacular parks and waterways.

Discover more than 60 different types of nature-based experiences including hiking, mountain biking, boating, four-wheel driving, indigenous culture tours, birdwatching, surfing, diving and so much more. 

Licensed Tour Operators know all the best places to go and will plan and prepare your visit to ensure you are safe and can enjoy your nature-based adventure to the fullest.

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How to get there

Churchill Island Marine National Park

Located 130km southeast of Melbourne, Churchill Island Marine National Park in Western Port covers 11km of the coastline between Long Point on Phillip Island and North Point on Churchill Island.  

When to go

Escape the summer crowds on Phillip Island with a quiet walk along the shorelines of the Marine National Park from Rhylll or on Churchill Island itself. 

Need to know

Churchill Island Marine National Park

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