The Deception Bay Heritage Trail takes you back to the early days of "The Bay" when the area was remote, roads were just patched out dirt tracks and the local Aboriginal people maintained a traditional lifestyle and way of life.

The trail is part of the Cottonwood walk which is approximately four kilometres long with 16 stops, 12 sculptured landmarks and many helpful information plaques along the way, which identify each significant heritage location.

The trail will take you along the foreshore, over boardwalks and foot bridges, up and down ramps and stairs, through parklands, picnic areas and even in the mangroves if you are up to it.

The day the kids and I went to walk the trail, there had not been any rain for months so the landscape was dry as a bone (as you will see in the photos below).

Grab the kids and go explore this great scenic walk along the foreshore of Deception Bay... it's great exercise and you will learn some history about this moreton bay location.

There are plenty of water bubblers along the way to refill your water bottles and keep hydrated.

If you like to take some snaps don't forget to bring the camera or smartphone.

List of Markers for the Trail

  • Stop 1 - The Pictures In The Rocks - Bathing Pool
  • Stop 2 - Dr Joseph Bancroft's House - An Inquiring Mind
  • Stop 3 - Matchbox Mozzies
  • Stop 4 - Mrs Bancroft's Bath (Set of Plaques)
  • Stop 5 - Tinned Meat (Sign about shorebirds)
  • Stop 6 - Mistaken Identity - People, Places and Stories
  • Stop 7 - Deception Bay Defence - The Second World War
  • Stop 8 - "Next, Please" - Campground
  • Stop 9 - Building Community (Wallin Family Sign)
  • Stop 10 - Eking out a Living - Early Settlers
  • Stop 11 - Tradition and Change (Boardwalk Over a Watercourse)
  • Stop 12 - Growing up in Deception Bay - Living Together
  • Stop 13 - From Across the Seas (Sign for Cottonwood Trees)
  • Stop 14 - Boondar - Webster's Boodar
  • Stop 15 - Fishing Traditional Style (Recreation Area)
  • Stop 16 - Hidden Midden - A Place of Plentiful Food

Getting Started

Stop 1 - The Pictures In The Rocks - Bathing Pool

Your trail begins at the corner of Beach road and Joseph crescent, however to view the bathing pool you must walk to the very end of the path leading around the old Fisheries property and walk down the old boat ramp.

Located in the mangroves at low tide, rests a large rectangular shape cut out in the sandstone rocks.

These are the edges of an old salt bath constructed by Dr Joseph Bancroft. The pool is called "The Bancroft Bath" which is now filled with silt.

The Bancroft Bath at low tide
The Bancroft Bath at low tide
Start of the Heritage Trail
Stop 1 - Start of the Heritage Trail
View of the Bay from Stop 1 of the Trail
View of the Bay from Stop 1 of the Trail

Stop 2 - Dr Joseph Bancroft's House - An Inquiring Mind

Stop 2 Sculpture with information about the Bancroft house on the hill
Stop 2 - Sculpture with information about the Bancroft house on the hill. "Dr Bancroft built a summer and weekend home for himself and his family. The original house which sat on the cliff above this marker was demolished in the late 1950's."
Follow the path south along the foreshore to get to stop 3
Follow the path south along the foreshore to get to stop 3... just before the first boat ramp

Stop 3 - Matchbox Mozzies - Visitors and Explorers

Stop 3 - Right in front of the Deception Bay dog beach
Stop 3 - Right in front of the Deception Bay dog beach

Stop 4 - Mrs Bancroft's Bath (Set of Plaques)

Continue south along the foreshore until you reach the wooden board walk where you will find stop 4 which is the location of Mrs Bancrof's salt bath and a set of plaques mounted onto the rails.

The Boardwalk which has the memorial plaques about Sir Joseph Bancroft
The Boardwalk which has the memorial plaques about Sir Joseph Bancroft
Set of Plaques with information about Sir Joseph Bancroft
Stop 4 - Set of Plaques with information about Sir Joseph Bancroft
Set of wooden stairs leading to the top footpath along Captain Cook Parade
Set of wooden stairs leading to the top footpath along Captain Cook Parade
Top footpath following Captain Cook Parade
Top footpath following Captain Cook Parade
Hidden Sculpture with information about the local industry
Hidden Sculpture with information about the local industry

Stop 5 - Tinned Meat (Sign about shorebirds)

From here head back to the stairs and go down to the lower path and continue south along the foreshore until you reach the start of the ramp where you will find stop 5 which is the location of the sign with information about the local shorebirds which inhabit the area.

Sign about local shorebirds
Stop 5 - Sign about local shorebirds

Stop 6 - Mistaken Identity - People, Places and Stories

Depending if you came up from the ramp from the foreshore or walked along to top footpath you will need to cross the road and head to the Deception Bay library where you will find the next sculpture on your route.

This sculpture has information about the trail
This sculpture has information about the heritage trail
This sculpture is on the other side of the deception bay library
Stop 6 - This sculpture is on the other side of the deception bay library

Stop 7 - Deception Bay Defence - The Second World War

Head back across the road towards the World War 2 memorial site where you will find the next stop on your route.

World War 2 Memorial Site
Stop 7 - World War 2 Memorial Site

Stop 8 - "Next, Please" - Campground

Head across Bayview Terrace and in between Mermaids by the Bay Cafe and the Zesty Lemon Cafe you will find the next marker.

Local campground and fishing destination for Queenslanders looking for a sea side holiday
Stop 8 - Local campground and fishing destination for Queenslanders looking for a sea side holiday

Stop 9 - Building Community (Wallin Family Sign)

From here you can continue south along Captain Cook Parade then cross the road to the foreshore or head back down the ramp next to the memorial site and head along the foreshore past the second boat ramp to get to the Wallin Family sign.

There is a picnic table under a shady fig tree here if you want to stop and take a rest.

Ramp which will take you to the foreshore
Ramp which will take you to the foreshore
Wallin Family Sign
Stop 9 - Wallin Family Sign

Stop 10 - Eking out a Living - Early Settlers

Continue along the foreshore, head across a small bridge which takes you over a water causeway, then continue along the footpath (which runs along The Esplanade) to just past the third boat ramp (directly across the end of Balmoral Place) and look out for the next marker which is stop 10.

Head over the bridge and water crossing
Head over the bridge and water crossing
Stop 10 just past the boat ramp
Stop 10 - Marker is just past the boat ramp

Stop 11 - Tradition and Change (Boardwalk Over a Watercourse)

Continue south along the foreshore where you will come to the Deception Bay lookout point, then continue on to the a little wooden boardwalk over a small drainpipe.

Little lookout spot
Stop 11 - Little lookout spot

Stop 12 - Growing up in Deception Bay - Living Together

Continue south along the foreshore to the fourth boat ramp (directly next to the public toilet blocks) and look out for the next marker which is stop 12.

Another lookout and fishing spot
Another lookout and fishing spot
Stop 12 marker
Stop 12 - Marker is next to the fourth boat ramp and public toilets

Stop 13 - From Across the Seas (Sign for Cottonwood Trees)

Continue south along the foreshore and stop just before the bridge over the watercourse at the wooden fishing platform at the end of The Esplanade (where the mangroves start again).

Cotton wood sign next to fishing platform
Stop 13 - Cotton wood sign next to fishing platform

Stop 14 - Boondar - Webster's Boodar

Continue south along the footpath over bridge and watercourse towards the mangroves. You will have mangroves on one side of the path and cottonwood trees on the other side of the path.

Look for the Cottonwood trees
Stop 14 - Look for the Cottonwood trees
The footpath continues towards Esplande South
The footpath continues towards Esplande South

Stop 15 - Fishing Traditional Style (Recreation Area)

Continue south along the footpath until the mangroves end again. You will now arive at the recreation area.

Recreation area overlooking Esplanade South
Stop 15 - Recreation area overlooking Esplanade South

Stop 16 - Hidden Midden - A Place of Plentiful Food

Continue south along the wooden walkway which runs along side The Esplanade South road until the mangroves start again and you reach Esplanade South Park.

You will now arive at the stop 16 which is the last marker on the trail... you made it.

Esplanade South Park
Esplanade South Park
Final Stop of the Heritage Trail at Esplanade South Park
Stop 16 - Final Stop of the Heritage Trail ends at Esplanade South Park

If you want to find out more about the Deception Bay Heritage Trail visit the Deception Bay Library.


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