World Heritage - Macquarie Island

Island Lake track landscape with lake in centre and grass all around, a large hill behind
Island Lake track landscape, Macquarie Island (Photo: Evelyn Sandoval)
Hurd Point hut with water on left, penguins all over the beach, and land on the right - long grass is seen in foreground

Long celebrated as one of the wonder spots of the world, the Macquarie Island Nature Reserve lies 1500 kilometres south-southeast of Tasmania, halfway between Australia and Antarctica. Macquarie Island falls under the jurisdiction of the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service and is managed as a Nature Reserve under the Tasmanian National Parks and Reserves Management Act 2002. The reserve is subject to the provisions of the Act, which relate to entry to the reserve and activities undertaken on the island. Other state and Federal legislation governs activities on Macquarie Island, including the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

Macquarie Island was inscribed on the World Heritage List on 3 December 1997. It is significant as one of the world's most outstanding geological features – it is the only place on earth formed entirely of oceanic crust. Every rock on Macquarie Island was formed on or deep below the seabed. This is an island of outstanding natural beauty and diversity, and is an important breeding place for many of the Southern Ocean's birds and animals.