Penguin Island

This page is a chapter in the book Western Australia.


Less than 42 kilometres south of Perth Penguin Island is about 1km offshore and is part of the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park that is managed by CALM. Penguin Island is home to Western Australia's largest colony of Little Penguins (the smallest penguins in the world). Approximately 1000 pairs nest on the island but spend most of their day feeding in the waters of the marine park.

[top]Getting there

Penguin Island is just a 5 minute ferry ride from the shores of Rockingham. The Penguin Island Ferry departs hourly from the Mersey Point Jetty from 9am to 3pm. Return ferries to the mainland depart hourly from 10am to 4pm.

[top]When to go

Best time to visit is from November to March when the large colony of Crested Terns and Bridled Terns nest.


Yes. Toilets, Drinking Fountains, Picnic Area.

[top]Key species

Little Penguin, Bridled Tern, Buff-banded Rail, Australian Pelican, Crested Tern, King's Skink.


If you plan to spend a few hours on the island you should pack food and water as there is no kiosk. The Island is open daily from mid September through to the Foundation Day long weekend in June. It is shut during the winter months to ensure the Penguins are not disturbed during the much important nesting season.

[top]Maps & GPS

Mersey Point Jetty S32 18 16" E115 42 02"


Bridled Tern (Onychoprion anaethetus anaethetus)Bridled Tern (Onychoprion anaethetus anaethetus)
Buff-banded Rail (Gallirallus philippensis )Buff-banded Rail (Gallirallus philippensis )
Bridled Tern (Onychoprion anaethetus anaethetus)Bridled Tern (Onychoprion anaethetus anaethetus)
Little Penguin (Eudyptula)Little Penguin (Eudyptula)
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