The residential development in the suburb is only three streets deep from the beach and is surrounded by undeveloped land. It is accessed by the Cape Pallarenda Road which runs north along the coast from Rowes Bay. In the north of Pallarenda is the Cape Pallarenda Conservation Park.
The suburb was officially named and bounded on 12 June 1992, having previously been known as Cape Marlow. It is believed the name Pallarenda was given by naval officer George Poynter Heath in 1864, possibly from castaway James Morrill who lived with local Aboriginal people.
In the 2016 census Pallarenda had a population of 791 people.
Pallarenda has a number of sites on the Queensland Heritage Register, including:
- Environmental Park: Cape Pallarenda Quarantine Station
Pallarenda has a boat ramp that provides direct access to the beach, and a permanent marine stinger enclosure, both in Pallarenda Park. To the south of Pallarenda there is a horse exercise beach and a dog off-leash area. There are a number of picnic and barbecue areas throughout the suburb.
Some of the features include:
- rolling green parklands
- off-leash dog walking area (Beach Access 11)
- play gyms
- walking tracks
- kitesurfing lessons (Beach Access 15)
- kiteboarding from beach access 14-18
- stand-up paddle surfing
- Waterfront accommodation & caravan park (Rowes Bay)
- boat ramp up to 3 tonne
- free electric BBQs
- only classic wood BBQs left in Townsville
- estuary fishing- 3 Mile Creek
- miles of pristine beaches
- views to Magnetic Island
- Townsville Town Common Nature Reserve
- old Fort “Pill Box” gun placement
- pots for family BBQs or picnics with shaded kiosks and raised areas under huge paperbarks
- basketball half court
- toilets and showers at beach access points that are maintained daily by council staff.
- beach volleyball