Travel to the Kimberley to discover a region that is home to extraordinary natural attractions studded with spectacular rock formations, a treasure trove of Aboriginal cave paintings and a stunning array of flora and fauna.
Broome, the southern gateway to the Kimberley Region, is known as the “Pearl of the North”. Situated over 2-hours flight north of Perth, the town earned this epithet when over a 100 years ago, when it served as the pearling center of Australia. Many migrants, especially from Asia, flocked to the region for its lure of great fortune. Today the town’s diversity and quirky personality are in large measure due to the adventurous spirit of these early inhabitants.
Once in Broome, it is only a short venture to the western edge of town to enjoy one of the most beautiful stretches of white sand beach the world has to offer. Here, 16-mile long Cable Beach buffers the warm waters of the southern Indian Ocean. Explore the beach on a breathtaking sunset camel safari for a mesmerizing view of the “Staircase to the Moon”. This phenomenon occurs between March and October when for 3-days after the full moon rises, reflections over the exposed mudflats of Roebuck Bay gives the optical illusion of a staircase reaching toward the moon. If you’re a natural history buff, then venture out to Gantheaume Point and see dinosaur footprints over 130 million years old.
The orange and black-banded rocks of the Bungle Bungle Range in Purnulu National Park are as iconic as Ayers/Uluru in the Red Center of the country. Although the landmark wasn’t fully explored until thirty years ago, this World Heritage listed site is one of the most fascinating geological formations in the world, with Aboriginal habitation dating back thousands of years. Visitors should keep in mind that the region is not all dry and barren, Lake Argyle is so massive that it is classified an inland sea,
The Bungle Bungles are but one of a number of breathtaking sites in the Kimberley.
Majestic King George Falls, Cathedral Gorge, Geikie Gorge and Windjana Gorge National Park are four other not-to-be-missed attractions in the area. In addition, Tunnel Creek National Park is Western Australia’s oldest cave system.
For those with enough time to explore the region in depth, there are a number of 4-wheel drive tours available. The one main road across the region, known as the Great Northern Highway, travels east from Broome past Windjana, Tunnel Creek and Geikie Gorge National Parks out towards the border of Northern Territory and ends at Wyndaham on the shores of the Cambridge Gulf. The road merges with The Victoria Highway and continues into Northern Territory.
Another way to explore this fascinating area and that is aboard an expedition cruise with Coral Princess or Orion. These cruises, aboard state of the art vessels, generally have 10-night itineraries between Broome and Perth. Discover the coastal areas of this remote region from a fleet of zodiac launches accompanied by trained guides. Explore Aboriginal rock art settings, wildlife sanctuaries, amazing natural phenomena and even meet up with a “salty” croc or two.
Venturing south from Broome along the Great Northern Highway, is the entrance to The Pilbara. This ancient landscape is home to several scenic reserves highlighted by Karijini National Park. A “mini-Grand Canyon” the formations are estimated to be over 2 billion years old. The area is easily accessible by car or bus and is laced with gorges, waterfalls and stunning emerald-colored pools.
Travel to the Kimberley for the chance to see nature untouched for billions of years along with one of the best opportunities to learn first-hand about the Aboriginal culture – their legacy, customs and art.