Perth, the Kimberley & Western Australia
Western Australia is a land of contrasting beauty and ruggedness. Stretching from the Kimberley region all the way down the coastline to South Western Australia, you’ll be entranced by Australia’s largest state and its natural landscapes, wildlife and indigenous culture.
Find out more about these exciting destinations below.
Located on Australia's west coast, Perth is one of Australia's sunniest cities and you’ll be inspired by its rich and diverse culture. This metropolitan city is Western Australia’s capital and largest city.
Visit Kings Park, the lush green heart of the city and one of the world’s biggest inner city parks. Weave your way along the Tree Top Walk through a spectacular canopy of eucalyptus trees or absorb panoramic views of the Swan River from the walkway. See the intriguing boab trees in the Botanic Gardens while keeping your eyes peeled for vibrant birdlife and be sure to listen out for the merry laugh of the native Australian Kookaburra.
There’s plenty to see and do around Perth. Discover the highlights of the city including the Barrack Street Jetty, Swan Bell Tower and Cottesloe Beach. Affectionately known as ‘The Cott’, this beautiful stretch of white sand beach is one of the most popular West Coast city beaches and was listed as one of the world’s best family beaches by Lonely Planet.
Enjoy magnificent views of the city from the Swan River and enjoy the scenic panorama of the Darling Ranges. For a different perspective of the city, relax on a cruise along the Swan River which flows straight through Perth separating downtown Perth from its southern suburbs.
Just south of Perth, meander through the streets of the dynamic city of Fremantle, enriched with maritime, convict and colonial history. Admire the well-preserved architectural heritage contrasted with the 21st century lifestyle of bustling local markets, lively bars and the ‘Cappuccino Strip’, known for its dining culture and variety of cafés catering for all budgets and tastes, you’ll be spoilt for choice!
Tucked away in the south west corner of Australia, south of Perth is the beautiful Margaret River region. Located in the valley of the eponymous Margaret River, it sits 9 kilometres inland from the Indian Ocean between Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin in Western Australia.
Once a small surfing town, Margaret River is now a world renowned wine region. You can enjoy the region’s finest wines against a backdrop of incredible forest and ocean scenery. Indulge your tastebuds at the Margaret River wineries, home to fine wines that make up 20% of the Australian premium wine market. You'll find local arts and crafts, fresh produce, full-bodied wines and gourmet food.
There’s also plenty of natural beauty that surrounds. In Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park is Mammoth Cave, a limestone cave internationally recognised for its splendour and pristine condition. Here you’ll gain an amazing insight into the fascinating underground world.
Another must-see on any visit to the region is Busselton Jetty, the longest wooden jetty in the southern hemisphere, stretching out 1.8 kilometres to sea and home to arguably Australia's greatest artificial reef. From the Underwater Observatory, see the amazing sea life with more than 300 individual marine species and vibrantly-coloured corals.
A scenic three hour journey from Perth along the Indian Ocean Drive you’ll find Nambung National Park home to one of Australia’s most unique natural landscapes, The Pinnacles. Observe the fascinating desert and its thousands of huge limestone pillars that mysteriously rise out of the sand. The amazing formations, some standing as high as five metres tall in contrast to their flat surrounds are really quite a sight.
The pillars were formed around 30,000 years ago in an era when the area was rich in marine life. After the sea levels receded, sea shells broke down into lime rich sands which were blown inland to form high mobile dunes. Over time, coastal winds removed the surrounding sand, leaving the limestone pillars exposed. There is controversy surrounding the formation of these fascinating pinnacles however you’ll be sure to agree, that it’s no doubt an intriguing sight!
Although a distinctive feature, The Pinnacles form only part of this marvellous National Park. Be awestruck by the coastal dune systems and flora and fauna that surrounds. Keep your eyes peeled for emus and kangaroos that can often be spotted around the National Park, a fantastic natural habitat for native Australian animals and birdlife.
Wave Rock in Hyden is one of the most famous rock formations in Western Australia’s rugged Golden Outback located 340km east of Perth. Caused by weathering and water erosion, this multi-coloured granite rock forms the shape of a wave frozen at the point of breaking and came into the spotlight when it was featured in the National Geographic Magazine in 1967.
Stand under the striking 15 metre high wave formed over 2700 million years ago and admire the beautiful colourings of the rock formed by the rain washing and dissolving minerals down its face – a stunning photo opportunity! Time your visit to coincide with the Western Australian wildflower season (August to November) and witness wildflowers in bloom with dazzling vivid colours.
Just nearby, admire evidence of ancient Aboriginal culture at Mulka’s Cave. This eerie cave is believed to have once been the home of Mulka the Terrible, an Aboriginal man who was ostracised from his tribe and took to hunting local children. See ancient cave paintings and faint hand prints believed to be those of Mulka. Plus, visit the nearby Wildlife Park to get up close and personal with kangaroos including the rare white kangaroo.
Monkey Mia, part of the Shark Bay World Heritage Area, is famous for its beautiful coastal vistas and its curious local residents – wild dolphins! As early as the 1960s, pods of bottlenose dolphins began a daily ritual of swimming into the shallow waters of Monkey Mia bay and they’ve been coming ever since. Travellers can get up close and personal with these playful and intelligent creatures which can be seen up to three times a day. They’re sure to make you smile.
Experience the remote and rugged outback as you travel through the Kimberley, an area so vast that it has fewer people per square kilometre than any place on earth. From the majestic Geikie Gorge to the turquoise waters of Cable Beach, you’ll be amazed by the serenity of this expansive land.
The pearling town of Broome will seduce you with its small town charm and relaxed coastal vibe. You’ll be captivated by the colours and warmth of the landscape and will see why travellers have been exploring Broome for more than a century. Pearl fishers began diving off Broome’s shores in the 1870s and established what has become one of the world’s premier pearling industries.
Visit world famous Cable Beach, where you can take a camel ride along the 22 kilometres of sparkling white sands, swim in the warm turquoise water or sit and relax at the end of the day and watch the colours of the sunset melt across the horizon.
A fixture of the Kimberley landscape is the broad trunked Boab Tree. In the port of Derby you’ll see the historic Boab Prison Tree which is 1,500 years old and an amazing 14 metres in diameter. The tree was once used as a holding area by Police walking prisoners in to Derby.
Kununurra is the centre of the East Kimberley’s agriculture, mining and tourism industries and is the gateway to the stunning Bungle Bungle Range in Purnululu National Park. Until as recently as the 1980s these ancient sandstone formations, with orange and black stripes, were unknown to most people. Only local indigenous people knew of their existence and cultural significance. Nearby Lake Argyle is the largest man-made lake in Australia, with 20 times the volume of water in Sydney Harbour. Known as an inland sea, its freshwater flows from the Ord River and is a haven for local wildlife including wallabies, crocodiles and more than 240 species of birds – almost one third of Australia’s bird species. Kununurra also boats one of the world’s largest diamond mines, Lirrgarn Argyle Diamond mine. It’s famous for its rare pink diamonds; so rare, they can attract 20 times the price of an equivalent white diamond.
Geikie Gorge is a Kimberley landmark carved from where the Fitzroy River cut into an ancient limestone reef over millions of years. Cruising through Geikie Gorge you’ll see 350 million year old fossils among the layers of the surrounding rock walls. Keep an eye out for some of the Gorge’s local wildlife including freshwater crocodiles, sawfish and rock wallabies.