About Normanton


Normanton is located in the Carpentaria Shire, about 680km by road west of Cairns. It is the main administrative and government centre for the region.


English is the predominant language spoken in Normanton. However, Kukatj/Gkuthaarn people may also speak in their own languages. Other language groups from the surrounding areas include the Kurtijar, Tagalaka, Waanyi, Lardil, and Kaiadilt peoples. People also come to visit and/or live in Normanton from Doomadgee, Burketown, Croyden, Mornington Island and Kowanyama. Assistance may be required for complainants, witnesses, victims and offenders who come before the court.

History of Normanton

Normanton facts and figures

For 2011 and 2016 census information on education, employment, income, housing figures and more for Normanton, build a statistical profile on Know Your Community.

Native title information

Search for native title information on the National Native Title Tribunal website.

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Visiting Normanton

Getting to Normanton

Normanton is accessible by air or road. From Cairns, road access to Normanton is via the Savannah Way. It is about an eleven hour drive (690km) and the road is sealed the whole way. The Savannah Way is a popular tourist route and is well-travelled, particularly during the dry season (May to October). 

From Mount Isa, best road access is via the Flinders Highway and the Burke Development Road. The drive from Mount Isa takes between 5 and 6 hours and the road is sealed all the way but narrow in some parts. Limited flights to Normanton are available from Mount Isa.

Seasonal considerations

The wet season for the Gulf can start from as early as November and can sometimes last through to May. This can impact on road conditions. The Carpentaria Shire Council also produces regular road and weather reports for the region.

Alcohol restrictions

There are no alcohol restrictions in Normanton. 

Local government

Search the local government directory for information about the Carpentaria Shire Council. 

Who to contact if you have questions about your visit

Sorry business

‘Sorry Business’ is a term used during the time of mourning following the death of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person. Torres Strait Islanders may use the terminology ‘Bad or Sad News’. The term can also refer to the past practice of forcibly removing children from their families. The intensity of mourning is reflective of the importance of the family or person who has died. The mourning process enables healing for the family and community involved.

The death of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person impacts on the whole community. Please check with the Mount Isa Service Centre before arriving in Normanton if you are planning to meet with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and/or organisations. Gkuthaarn and Kukatj Aboriginal Corporations close their offices to attend funerals of IAboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members. 

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Community justice group

The role of the Community Justice Group (CJG) is to ensure that clients of the service are given appropriate cultural support for court matters. The CJG also provides cultural reports to the courts at sentencing and bail applications, assistance to the courts in managing community-based offences, and networking to implement crime prevention initiatives.

Members of the CJG work closely with a number of justice agencies including the Queensland Magistrates Court, Department of Corrective Services, Queensland Police Service, and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service. The CJG works to support the community’s understanding of and access to the justice system by working in conjunction with Shire Council by-laws and victim support agencies.

Key ways the CJG is able to assist the community and the courts include:

  • participation in community consultations relevant to the CJG’s role within the criminal justice sector
  • preparation and presentation of written and oral sentencing submissions to the court
  • defendant support and referral (including court support)
  • victim support and referral (including court support)
  • support for debtors wishing to access the State Penalties and Enforcement Registry.

For more information about your local Community Justice Group:

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Community services

Use the Queensland Government's one place service directory to find up-to-date contact information for local support services including:

  • legal advice and support services
  • youth justice and support groups
  • domestic and family violence support
  • drug and alcohol services
  • men's and women's groups
  • accident, emergency and medical services

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More information

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