Our region

Our region

Torres Strait communities

The Torres Strait consists of 18 island and  2 Northern Peninsula Area (NPA) communities. The islands are scattered over a geographic area of 48,000 square kilometres from the tip of Cape York, north towards the borders of Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.

There are 5 traditional island clusters in the Torres Strait:

Top Western Islands

  • Boigu
  • Dauan
  • Saibai

Western Islands

  • Badu
  • Mabuaig
  • Moa Island - Kubin and St Pauls communities

Central Islands

  • Iama (Yam Island)
  • Masig (Yorke Island)
  • Poruma (Coconut Island)
  • Warraber (Sue Island)

Eastern Islands

  • Mer (Murray Island)
  • Ugar (Stephen Island)
  • Erub (Darnley island)

Inner Islands

  • Hammond Island
  • Muralug (Prince of Wales Island)
  • Ngurupai (Horn Island)
  • Thursday Island - TRAWQ and Port Kennedy

The 2 Torres Strait communities on the Northern Peninsula Area are:

  • Bamaga
  • Seisia

Local Government

Thursday, Horn and Prince of Wales Islands are governed by Torres Shire Council. All other island communities are governed by the Torres Strait Island Regional Council (TSIRC). The Torres Strait NPA communities are governed by the Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council (NPARC).

Travelling and engaging with communities

Visitors should contact the local council when planning a trip to one of Torres Strait's islands or communities.
It is important that you contact the respective Council Divisional (Island) Office in advance to:

  • advise them of your intentions
  • obtain current information on the community, services and accommodation available
  • seek advice on any cultural protocols that you may need to adhere to.

It may be an offence to travel to communities without a visitor's permit if you are not covered by specific exemptions.

Visit the TSIRC website to find out more.

For Native Title and Prescribed Bodies Corporate (PBC) contact details, seek advice from the region's Native Title Service Provider - Gur A Baradharaw Kod Torres Strait Sea and Land Council (GBK).

The TSRA Cultural Protocols Guide and TSRA Cultural Policy produced for use by TSRA staff, is also available to the public, government and non-government organisations. It outlines information on communication, community visits and engagement, and working, researching and staying in communities.

Islands between Ugar and Poruma Jan 2013

[back to top]