Pajinka, mainland Australia’s northernmost point in Queensland, is a renowned tourist destination known for its natural beauty and adventure. The area, featuring scenic landscapes of tropical rainforest, scrubland, rocky headlands, and stunning views, has traditionally attracted four-wheel drive enthusiasts. However, there are opportunities to shift to a higher value market by enhancing accessibility, accommodation, and cultural activities. DSDATSIP and the Gudang Yadhaykenu Aboriginal Corporation (GYAC), trustee of the Aboriginal freehold lands at Pajinka, approached TRC with the aim to improve the precinct’s design and management and to capitalise on tourism, focusing on achieving the community’s goals of caring for Country, creating employment and economic benefits, and sharing culture.
The potential developments align with the Northern Peninsula Rural Masterplan and Queensland’s Towards Tourism 2032 strategy, focusing on infrastructure that supports visitors and communities, developing First Nations tourism, and creating more touring opportunities. The Pajinka Precinct Plan, outlines the aspirations of GYAC for the lands at Pajinka, aiming to guide future funding applications and developments, while complying with necessary statutory approvals. The plan highlights Pajinka’s dramatic landscapes and its challenges, such as limited seasonal access and the need for redevelopment of existing facilities. Upgrading the Peninsula Development Road and expanding the Bamaga airport could enhance Pajinka’s appeal as a fly-in destination, responding to emerging market demands for authentic cultural and nature experiences with quality facilities and services. Strategic management and alignment with local master plans are crucial for realising these development goals, benefiting the broader Cape York region.