Churchill Island Marine National Park (Churchill Island Marine National Park, The Waters of Western Port Bay)

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Churchill Island Marine National Park (Churchill Island Marine National Park, The Waters of Western Port Bay)

Located south of Rhyll, on the eastern shore of Phillip Island, in Western Port, Churchill Island Marine National Park extends from Long Point south of Rhyll township to the north point of Churchill Island and along the island's western shore to the bridge.

The Park is part of the Western Port RAMSAR site and is an important habitat for many bird species.
Bird watching is a popular activity in the park. Many birds feed, roost and breed around the bay and you may be able to spot birds that have migrated from across the globe.

Canoeing is an ideal way to explore the mangroves and estuarine conditions. Yachting is increasingly popular in the bays relatively tranquil waters.

On calm days snorkelling and diving among the sea grass meadows will reveal a myriad of crustaceans fish and other marine species. Be on the look out for the pot bellied seahorse and weedy seadragon, Victoria’s marine emblem.

How to get there

Churchill Island Marine National Park (Churchill Island Marine National Park, The Waters of Western Port Bay)

Need to know

Churchill Island Marine National Park (Churchill Island Marine National Park, The Waters of Western Port Bay)

Warnings & Restrictions

Dogs

Dogs are not allowed

Restrictions

  • Boating zones apply
  • No fishing

Warnings

  • Water hazards
    • Submerged obstacles
    • Shallow water
    • Strong currents
    • Deep water
  • Animals and pests
    • Snakes
    • Sharks
    • Stingers
  • Terrain hazards
    • Slippery surface
    • Uneven ground

Be Prepared

Stay safe and get the most out of your park visit by preparing for natural hazards and other outdoor risks in Victoria’s parks. You are responsible for your own safety and the safety of those in your care. Find out more.

Change of Conditions

Nature being nature, sometimes conditions can change at short notice. It’s a good idea to check this page ahead of your visit for any updates.

Otama Submarine Removal from Western Port

Contractors commissioned by Department of Defence will begin the process of removing ex-HMAS Otama from Western Port later this month (September 2022).
We acknowledge the role the Western Port Oberon Association played in bringing the Otama to Victoria in the hope of making the Otama the centre piece of the Maritime museum, but unfortunately since the group took ownership of the Otama more than 20 years ago they have been unable to make substantial progress in bring the vessel to land, requiring the removal of the Otama.
Background: 
After being decommissioned in December 2000, the Commonwealth sold the ex-HMAS Otama (the Otama) to the Western Port Oberon Association (WPOA) who planned to preserve the vessel as a museum display. 
The Otama arrived and was moored in Western Port in 2002 while waiting for approval and development of the museum. The vessel has remained idle and deteriorating in the port for more than 20 years as the group’s plan to establish an Otama submarine experience have been unsuccessful.
Parks Victoria is the local port manager of Western Port and is responsible for the safe operation of the port.
As a result of the vessel taking on water after storms in June 2021, it was moved closer to shore to ensure the safety of the public and to protect the surrounding environment. 
Following failure to comply with multiple Direction to Move notices, and with no further action or management of the vessel by its owners, Parks Victoria has in accordance with the Port Management Act worked with the Department of Defence to remove the vessel from the port.

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