Since the mid-1880s, the island has had a significant history and place in Moreton Bay. Now it is enjoyed by many locals and visitors; however, the island is only accessible by watercraft. Dugongs, turtles, and dolphins frequent the waters around the island. Often there are thousands of jellyfish following the currents, and sharks are known to inhabit these waters.
Horseshoe Bay, with its sandy beach, is popular with boating visitors. It is a popular overnight anchorage for sailors and is considered by many to be the bay's best shelter from northerly winds. Sea kayakers also use the island for overnight stays. Peel Island is known for its natural beauty, with bird and animal life undisturbed from the pollutions of modern times. Up to 74 bird species have been identified.
In 2007, the island was declared as Teerk Roo Ra National Park and Conservation Park. Facilities are limited, but there is a toilet block. Tracks used when the area was a leper colony can take visitors across the island. Features include the old leper colony town on the north-west of the island. The housing there is being restored, possibly for school camps. An interesting piece of historical trivia is that after the island was decommissioned as a leper colony, it was discovered the strain of leprosy was non-contagious.
The Harry Atkinson artificial reef has been constructed to the north of Peel Island.
*Updated November 2013