Skip to content
Empowering our people · In our decision · In our culture · For our future

Saibai

Saibai is a large, low-lying island only 4 km from the Papua New Guinea mainland.

Close north is uninhabited Kauamag Island, separated from Saibai by a channel that is 7km long, between 180 and 650 meters wide and almost blocked at the east end.

The Island is flat and predominantly a mangrove island, with the highest point being 1.7m and prone to flooding during the wet season, which coincides with king tides.

A bitumen airstrip allows year-round access.  The Island is about 20km by 15km, but only a small proportion is inhabited.

Regular trading occurs between Saibai and Papuan villages. The locals can cross the border provided they have a permit to do so. This is something visitors to Saibai can’t do.

Strict quarantine regulations are in force on Sabai.

Saibai Islanders have close family, clan, and religious ties with neighbouring Papuans.

Language group

The language of Saibai is the Kalaw Kawaw Ya (KKY).

Population

450 to 500 residents

Facilities

  • Airport
  • Regional council office
  • Tagai Campus School (Years pre-prep to year 6)
  • Health Centre with two permanent nurses
  • IBIS grocery store
  • Council workshop / compound
  • SES shed
  • Water plant reservoirs / filtration collection wells
  • Power station
  • Sewer plant
  • School accommodation
  • Telecom tower
  • Guest house
  • Barge Rramp
  • Pier (small craft and passengers only)
  • Saibai Community Development Corporation
  • Customs office
  • Rangers / customs shed
  • Community centre
  • Holy Trinity Church
  • Cemetery
  • Fuel bowser

Transportation

TSIRC operational hours

Monday to Friday: 9:00am - 12:30pm, 1:30pm - 4pm

Contact: Ms Yakopetha Akiba-Bowie

Email: yakopetha.akiba-bowie@tsirc.qld.gov.au

Phone: 07 4083 2800

Visitor approval

Accommodation

Accommodation keys are to be collected and dropped off at the Council Office prior to departure from Saibai Community.

All approved visiting guests are required to sign the Council’s visitor book to document the visit for record purposes.

Bookings can be made by emailing MSAO at Saibai Office.

Council Accommodation – Saibai Accommodation

Contact: TSIRC Saibai Office

Phone: 07 4083 2800

Saibai State School Accommodation

Contact Saibai School

Shops

IBIS Shop

Operating hours: Monday to Friday, 9am - 5.30pm

Saturday, 9am - 12noon

 

Manager Contact

Phone: 07 4214 8222

Community social groups

Saibai Island Holy Trinity Youth Group

Kayn Goegiw Zurul

Contact: Yako Akiba / Adeah Kabai

Muyngu Koekaper Dance team

Contact: Mr Sedrick Waia

Mura Buai Siba Wum Rugby League Football Club

Contact: Mr Nicolas Hara (President)

Religions

  • Holy Trinity, Church of Torres Strait
  • ACC Assembly of God Church
  • Shared Ministry

Gazetted holidays

(TBA)

Public access facilities

IKC and Community Hall

Bookings: TSIRC Saibai Office

Phone: 07 4083 2800

Dhamway Bistro

Contact: Mariana Babia

Phone: 0499 182 061