Gambier Island is named after the Admiral of the Fleet James, Lord Gambier (1756–1833). Halkett Bay Park on its southeastern shore was established in June of 1988.
This park protects a rocky tidal coastline, a small islet and beaches. It also protects the Halkett Point glass sponge reef. In 2016, a 136 hectare marine foreshore addition was established to protect the rare glass sponge reef southeast of Gambier Island. This glass sponge reef is unique in that it is located in only 30 metres of water, making the park one of the few locations in the world where these reefs are accessible to both scientists and scuba divers.
Bald eagle, western red-backed salamander, northern flying squirrel, black-tailed deer, marten, mink, raccoon, seals, and waterfowl can all be found in the park. The Annapolis artificial reef in the park not only provides habitat opportunities for marine life but also serves as a unique scuba diving opportunity.