Parks Australia has today announced that the Australian National Botanic Gardens, Booderee, Kakadu and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Parks will be temporarily closed to visitors and other non-essential travellers for a minimum of two weeks.
“Our national parks and botanic gardens are treasured places for both locals and visitors alike, however the health and wellbeing of visitors, staff, and local communities is our utmost priority,” said Director of National Parks, Dr James Findlay.
“These decisions have been made in consultation with key stakeholders for each site including traditional owners represented by the joint Boards of Management, Central Land Council, Northern Land Councils, and the Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community Council, and we will continue to work together.
“Longer term options for these sites will be assessed over the next fortnight as we continue to monitor the advice of medical authorities and the government.”
The following closures will take effect:
- Australian National Botanic Gardens, Canberra, from 5pm Tuesday, 24 March 2020
- Booderee National Park, Jervis Bay Territory, from 5pm Wednesday, 25 March 2020
- Kakadu and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Parks, Northern Territory, from 5pm Thursday, 26 March 2020 (The varying closure dates reflect individual requirements following consultation for each site).
At Booderee National Park, camping will be cancelled until 1 May 2020, and no forward bookings taken until there is greater clarity on the longer-term arrangements for the park. Visitors who have bookings in place will be contacted to arrange refunds.
Parks Australia will continue to facilitate access to Booderee, Kakadu and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park for residents of the park and surrounding Aboriginal communities, essential services, and those working in the community.
At Kakadu National Park, the Boat Ramp on the South Alligator River will remain open. Key operational staff will continue to work on site in each park to complete vital work to maintain these significant protected natural and cultural environments, including maintaining the living collections and seed collections at the Australian National Botanic Gardens.