Pincushion Island is a small sandstone outcrop at the mouth of the Maroochy River. Although it was once an island, it is now landlocked by a permanent sandbar. At low tide, it nearly impossible to distinguish where the mainland ends and this former island begins. As the ocean rises with the tide, Pincushion Island is surrounded by water. Until mid-tide, the level of this water is sufficiently shallow to allow access for visitors.
Despite its small size, Pincushion Island offers opportunities for exploration for the whole family. The lower level extends into the ocean, providing great views of the surroundings and incoming waves crashing into the island. Rock pools of varying sizes and depths are ideal for younger children to enjoy wading or simply splashing around.
The colours and textures of the rocks are simply fascinating. These can be admired closely by climbing atop this rocky outcrop. Eager visitors can navigate their own path, scrambling over rocks to reach the top. Alternatively, a small set of steps has been carved into the rock for less capable or younger visitors.
The views from the top are stunning, with sight lines out to the ocean, across the river and of Mudjimba Island. Keen eyes will also spot Mt Coolum in the distance.
Pincushion Island is accessed via the beach entrance at North Shore Road. This section of the beach also includes an off-leash exercise area for dogs. You may even come across a four-legged companion on the island itself!
Toilets, picnic tables and parking are provided for convenience. Please note that this destination becomes quite busy during the weekends and securing a parking spot may be difficult. Early arrival is strongly recommended.
I wouldn't recommend planning a day trip for the sole purpose of visiting Pincushion Island. However, if you were keen to swim at Mudjimba Beach, seeking a dog-friendly swimming area or staying at a nearby hotel, it is most definitely worthy of a visit.