Popular beach spot off limits to travellers due to 'unusual quirk'

Brianne Tolj
·3-min read

Sydneysiders hoping for a holiday escape are being turned away from the incredible beaches inside Jervis Bay’s Commonwealth Territory amid the city’s continuous Covid outbreaks.

The Shoalhaven peninsula, which includes the Wreck Bay Indigenous community and HMAS Creswell, can only be accessed from Booderee National Park, where drivers’ details are being checked and recorded.

Believing the area sits within NSW, it has been reported that turned away Sydney holidaymakers have been left scratching their heads.

However, because of an “unusual quirk of history”, Jervis Bay Territory is actually owned by the Commonwealth and is subject to the same health orders in place in ACT.

A beach in Booderee National Park. Source: Instagram/michael_f_cbr
The Shoalhaven peninsula, which includes Wreck Bay and Creswell, can only be accessed from Booderee National Park. Source: Instagram/michael_f_cbr

The ACT last month closed its border with Covid hotspots in Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong. On Tuesday the ACT relaxed its border rules with NSW, but people coming from 11 Sydney council areas are still excluded from entering the ACT and Jervis Bay territory.

ACT residents who have been in the Sydney hotspot areas must alert ACT Health to their intention to return and self-isolate and those not from the territory can’t enter unless they have an exemption.

Rule goes back to ‘unusual quirk of history’

Jervis Bay Territory falls under MP Dr Andrew Leigh’s jurisdiction.

“It goes back to the unusual quirk of history that when the founders created Canberra they decided that every capital city needs a port,” he told ABC Radio on Tuesday morning.

Dr Leigh confirmed that “Wreck Bay and Creswell are off limits if you are visiting from a Covid affected area”.

Bristol Point campground at Booderee National Park. Source: AAP
The region is a popular camping area and boasts beautiful beaches and hiking trails. Source: AAP

“I think that makes sense. The Wreck Bay Indigenous community has people with a range of complicated health issues where there has been a real concern over Covid.

“I had a number of constituents get in touch with me early on in the pandemic really concerned about what it would mean if Covid was to get loose within the community.”

The Jervis Bay area is a popular camping site and boasts beautiful beaches and hiking trails.

Callala Beach, Huskisson and Vincentia, which sit to the north of the peninsula, are open to all NSW residents.

Jervis Bay Territory is outlined. Source: Map Carta
Callala Beach, Huskisson and Vincentia, which sit to the north of the Jervis Bay Territory, are open to all NSW residents. Source: Map Carta

NSW records five new local Covid cases

NSW recorded five locally-acquired coronavirus cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Monday from fewer than 14,700 tests.

Two were reported on Monday - a man in his 40s who presented to hospital with respiratory symptoms and his partner.

Pedestrians with and without face masks are seen in Sydney. Source: AAP
NSW recorded five locally-acquired coronavirus cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Monday from fewer than 14,700 tests. Source: AAP

with AAP

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