The perfect place to get married!!! We were looking for a very private wedding, just the two of us, and after contacting the hotel, they helped arrange everything. They arranged a celebrant (Vivian) to fly in to perform the ceremony, and with the help of Nicole, Heather and David all our wedding needs were taken care of. David and Heather were our witnesses, and David (Resort Photographer) took some amazing pictures... the day ended with a very romantic 7 course dinner on the beach, served to perfection by Claudio - Steve and Alice
Like Nowhere Else
Discover Lizard Island
The only resort located on a 1,013-hectare National Park and literally on the Great Barrier Reef, Lizard Island offers seclusion and natural privacy that you will cherish. With only 40 rooms, suites and villas and your choice of private beaches, escape for a day exploring the reef, taking in the incredible nature around you in privacy and seclusion. At Lizard Island Resort, we aspire to deliver an experience, ambiance and service that is warm, welcoming, professional and passionate.
Walk in the footprints of an ancient culture and follow the path of iconic explorers
Seclusion & Natural Privacy
Exploring and experiencing Lizard Island can be enjoyed by taking part in a number of guided tours, either to the inner and outer reefs, the Research Station, or on nature walks and challenging hikes to the top of Cook’s Look. Alternatively, you can explore the island on a self-guided tour, taking in the beauty at your own pace.
Essentia Day Spa is designed as a natural extension of the calm tranquility of the resort, encouraging you to relax, rejuvenate and re-balance. Private and couples treatment rooms and a full menu of relaxing and therapeutic treatments are offered. Fresh, local produce from the coast, mainland hinterland and waters of Tropical North Queensland drive the daily menu with seasonal variety and flavours inspired by the many cultures that make up the melting pot of the local area.
The Dingaal Aboriginal people - Traditional Owners of Lizard Island, Jiigurru, have lived in this area for tens of thousands of years. Lizard Island was known as Dyiigurra to the Dingaal Aboriginal people and was regarded as a sacred place. It was used by the people for the initiation of young males and for the harvesting of shellfish, turtles, dugongs and fish.
The Dingaal believed that the Lizard group of islands had been created in the Dreamtime. They saw it as a stingray, with Lizard Island being the body and the other islands in the group forming the tail.
The islands are rich in cultural meaning for the Dingaal Aboriginal people and contain sacred sites including initiation, ceremonial and story sites. Shell middens, which provide evidence of long-ago feasting on clams, oysters, spider shells and trochus shells, are found on the islands.
Lizard Island also has a rich heritage associated with the earliest European exploration of the coast and subsequent settlement. Lost amongst the labyrinth of reefs, Captain James Cook resolved to visit one of the high islands to chart a course out to sea through the maze of reefs which confronted him.
The name Lizard Island was given to it by Captain Cook when he passed it on 12 August 1770. He commented, "The only land Animals we saw here were Lizards, and these seem'd to be pretty Plenty, which occasioned my naming the Island Lizard Island". Cook climbed the island's summit to find a way through the maze of reefs which has since been called 'Cook's Look'.
Just over 100 years later the island was inhabited by bêche de mer fishermen. Watson's Bay on Lizard Island is named after one of these fishermen. The story of the escape of Watson's wife through the Great Barrier Reef from Lizard Island while sitting inside the cut-down boiler from a sunken ship has become one the most prominent tales of folklore from the pioneering era of Australia's history.
Mary Watson (born 17 January 1860 - 1881) migrated to Queensland with her family in 1877. Having accepted a position as a governess with an hotelier's family, at eighteen Mary travelled from Maryborough to the isolated port of Cooktown, where she met and married bêche de mer fisherman Robert F. Watson in May 1880. Watson took her with him to set up a fishing station on Lizard Island, then otherwise uninhabited. In September 1880, Watson left his wife and son behind with two Chinese servants known as Ah Sam and Ah Leung, while he and his partner Percy Fuller made an extended fishing trip in their luggers.
A few weeks later a party of mainland Aborigines of the Guugu Yimmidir group made one of their habitual seasonal trips by canoe to the island, where Watson had set up his household in a stone structure close to a small creek, the island's only supply of fresh water.
Mary had probably also inadvertently trespassed on an indigenous ceremonial ground normally taboo to women and children. The Aborigines attacked Ah Sam, who suffered seven spear wounds, and Ah Leung was killed in a vegetable garden he was tending.
Mary Watson frightened off the group by firing a gun and then, with a small supply of food and water, put to sea in a cut-down ship's water tank, used for boiling sea slugs. She, with her four-month-old baby, Ferrier, and Ah Sam, drifted for eight days and some forty miles, hoping to be picked up by a passing vessel. Mary's final diary entry ended 'No water. Near dead with thirst.' Her diary describing their last days was found with their remains in 1882 among the mangroves on No. 5 Island in the Howick Group off Cape Flattery, still in the iron tank. Ah Sam had died on the beach nearby. A concealed spring existed on the islet, but they had not found it. When the bodies were returned to Cooktown a procession of 650 escorted them to their burial at Two Mile Cemetery, on the road to the Palmer River goldfields. Mrs Watson became an emblem of pioneer heroism for many Queenslanders.
Lizard Island's beauty and wilderness are distinctive, and Lizard Island was declared a National Park in 1937. The waters surrounding the island were declared a Marine Park in 1974. Today the islands are a popular tourism destination and the base for world-renowned tropical marine research.
Conservation & Sustainability
Everything we do on Lizard Island takes into account our prime position on the Great Barrier Reef. We’re respectful of the truly remarkable environment we operate in, and maintaining, protecting and nurturing the diverse ecosystem of Lizard Island and its surrounding waters underpins our every effort.
Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef
Lizard Island embarked on a unique partnership with reef conservation organisation Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef for the third annual Great Reef Census that launched in October 2022. The event marked the start of an ongoing partnership that allows our guests to participate in hands-on citizen science initiatives and make a positive contribution to the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef.
The Great Reef Census is one of the world’s largest marine citizen science initiatives, involving divers, tourism crews, recreational fishers, tourists, luxury resorts and fleets of superyachts to survey hundreds of reefs across the 2,300 km Great Barrier Reef. The Great Reef Census in-water surveying is open to any competent snorkeller with a GoPro and consists of taking a series of images at various sites along a reef.
One of the most northerly islands in the Great Barrier Reef, Lizard Island offers access to a wide area of the reef and with some of the most remote coral outcrops, home to a richly diverse range of coral and marine species. The 15 reefs around the island include high priority reefs vital to the conservation of the Great Barrier Reef.
Our partnership with Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef offers exposure to a large number of highly engaged travellers which was the result of several years of planning for a meaningful citizen science guest program. Lizard Island is the only luxury resort located literally on the Great Barrier Reef, so it's the perfect place to engage citizens in this remarkable citizen science project – allowing every citizen to be a conservationist.
Parley for the Oceans
Parley for the Oceans is the global environmental organization and network where creators, thinkers and leaders come together to raise awareness for the beauty and fragility of the oceans and collaborate on projects that can end their destruction.
Alongside Parley, Lizard Island is taking action for the oceans. Our efforts involve clean ups that cover most of the beaches and islands around Lizard Island. This partnership is an ongoing initiative with all of our plastics being separated in the Parley hessian bins around the island.
Protection of the Great Barrier Reef
Lizard Island was declared a National Park in 1937, with the waters surrounding the Island recognised as a Marine Park in 1974. To ensure our guests are exposed to and educated about the challenges and the opportunities faced by the Great Barrier Reef, we work closely with the Lizard Island Research Station, a world-leader in coral reef education and research, to protect and preserve the Great Barrier Reef and most recently pioneering successful techniques to combat the spread of one of the reef biggest predators, the Crown of Thorns.
We offer guests tours of the Research Station where they have the opportunity to speak to marine staff who live and work in the surrounds, who can provide insights on the day to day health of the marine environment as well as advances in reef conservation and research breakthroughs.
Lizard Island is also a founding member of the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef, further emphasising our dedication to protecting our natural and cultural surrounds to ensure it remains for generations to come.
Protection of Cultural Heritage
We are respectful of Lizard Island's history, and committed to preserving its place in the minds of our staff and guests well into the future. Our work with Lizard Island's onsite naturalist, and our relationship with the Traditional Owners of the land, Jigurru of the Dingaal Aboriginal people, are central to upholding this commitment.
We share the island's cultural heritage with our guests through guided walks with our naturalist. On these walks, historical sites are observed, and guests have the opportunity to hike to the highest point on the island in the footsteps of Captain Cook, to the aptly named Cook's Look.
Environmentally Friendly Practices
On Lizard Island, we also do our best to recycle what we use with seven main streams: co-mingled recycling, organics, compostable, cardboard, paper, batteries and toner cartridges. We're also pleased to have removed all plastic straws and bottles from use on Lizard Island.
Our dedication to the environment is reflected through our waste and recycling handling. Approximately 60 percent of all waste from the resort operation on Lizard Island is either recycled or deployed for alternative use.
All waste on the island is separated and removed on the fortnightly barge, to limit any cross contamination with the natural balance of the flora and fauna.
Support for the Local Community
We're always looking for ways to support the local community while also protecting the environment that surrounds us. To ensure the minimal amount of waste from the property ends up as landfill, we work with a local waste provider to recycle or deploy waste in other channels.
Through innovative practices, we're able to ensure our footprint on the environment is minimal, like reusing oil for biofuel and coffee granules. Additionally, 90 percent of all food and beverage supplied on-island is purchased from local suppliers, echoing our commitment to supporting the businesses that operate in our region.
It begins with a special place, It's not just any place, this is a place that takes your breath away. Then you add people who can see, feel and understand the place. They are educators, custodians and stewards of the extraordinary. Delaware North brings the place and the people together to help those seeking a truly authentic experience. Lizard Island has a number of opportunities for innovative and enthusiastic hospitality professionals, both onsite and across our sister resorts.
International Trade Inquiries
Our European and North American Travel Trade Representatives are available to answer your Trade Inquiries.
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