Guest Post by Jayde Ferguson.
Crowned one of Australia’s hidden treasures, The Kimberley in Western Australia is lined with some of the most striking beaches and complex landscapes. Rolling the best of Australia into the one breathtaking region, its tropical monsoon climate, dramatic waterfalls and rugged outback make it a popular destination for Australians and tourists.
A place that will leave you feeling awe-struck as you indulge in a journey of discovery, this stunning North West location is home to natural wonders, 4WD adventures, camping and caravanning spots and unforgettable unique experiences. Far from the ordinary – where will you end up these next holidays? Here’s our top picks for The Kimberley attractions you can’t afford to miss.
1. Gibb River Road
Boasting the most intensely coloured ranges, lush rock pools and epic waterfalls, the Gibb River Road in The Kimberley showcases absolutely everything the region is famous for. Ideal for those 4WD outback quests, the legendary 660km dirt track runs through the heart of The Kimberley from Broome to Kununurra along the border of WA.
Before making the trip, ensure you obtain any permits and checked the road conditions. Once you are set and ready to tackle the track, the Gibb River Road will lead you through some of Australia’s best swimming spots complete with waterfalls, a chance to see freshwater crocodiles at the National Park and get you up close to the much anticipated Kimberley wildlife.
The track takes about 8 days to drive and there’s lots of great camping spots along the way. You’ll definitely need access to a 4WD for the road and there’s plenty of opportunities for hiking, mountain bike rides and exploring to quench your thirst for adventure.
Tip: If you’re not confident to drive the track yourself, why not arrange an organised tour? Some must-see highlights along the road include Manning Falls, Tunnel Creek, Dimond Gorge, Ord River, Bell Gorge (which boasts the world’s best day spa too) and Manning Gorge, just to name a few.
Eds Tip: We travelled with Adventure Wild and had a wonderful 12 day glamping trip in the Kimberley a few years ago.
2. The ‘Red Dirt’ Track from Broome to Dampier Peninsula
As one of the last true wilderness areas on Earth, driving as many of the highlighted tracks as you dare opens your eyes up to iconic outback landscapes you won’t see anywhere else. The red-dirt track in particular runs from Broome to the remote Dampier Peninsula, where you’ll be able to indulge in fantastic fishing spots or explore the culture and lifestyle of local Indigenous peoples.
Where the silence is tense and the beaches are washed the brightest shade of white, you can almost picture yourself 4WD driving past those red desert cliffs. Before you trek off from Broome though, make sure to check out the Broome Pearl farms and Gantheaume Point for some exquisite views of the famous Cable Beach and petrified dinosaur footprints – perfect adventure if you have young ones too!
3. Lake Argyle
When travelling in Broome, Kimberley and beyond, the serenity of Lake Argyle is a must to add to your attractions list. This massive freshwater manmade lake is located at the northern end of Pannikin Bay and has been considered the jewel of the Kimberley since its establishment. Swimming and luxury cruises are just the tip of the ice berg for things to do at Lake Argyle, making it one of the most popular tourist attractions worldwide.
Whether you want to recoup, relax and immerse yourself into the magnificent landscape that cusps the edge of the lake or you’re looking to really explore and learn about the amazing location, there’s something everyone in the family can appreciate in this spot.
Tip: Don’t forget to discover the Argyle Diamond mine whilst your there too! Home to the rare pink diamond, the mine site is the world’s largest supplier of diamonds – if you have youngsters under the age of 12 though, they won’t be able to come with you. Lake Argyle is also the perfect spot for fishing, so let out that inner adventurer and catch something awesome these holidays!
4. The Stunning Beaches
It’s impossible to be up at this end of Australia and not experience the beaches. Easily one of the biggest attractions about the region; Broome Kimberley and beyond is home to only the best. Nestled between the wild beauty and unparalleled space, the swimming and snorkelling spots in this part of the world are just to die for.
Broome’s Cable Beach is world famous for its sunsets and is best soaked in from the seat of a camel train after a hard day of swimming and sunbaking. As WA’s number one beach, Cable Beach offers your own secluded slice of paradise. But if you’re still wanting to get your adventure on, you can do so with fishing, parasailing and on-beach 4WDriving too.
Other beaches work checking out are Riddell Beach with ancient cliffs and dinosaur prints, Middle Lagoon just North of Broome which is fantastic for snorkelling and doesn’t bring in any of the region’s crocodiles and One Tree Beach which offers a stunning shell beach, sandstone cliffs and fresh sea food extravaganzas.
5. The Bungle Bungles Ranges
Plunge yourself into the Kimberley culture at The Bungle Bungles Rages located in Purnululu National Park for a true outback experience. These sandstone beehive-like mounds look spectacular from a flight above, or experience their sheer size and impact by walking through the landmark which has been a national park since 1987.
The ranges are broken up by gorges and swimming pools, opening up a hidden world of deep gullies and complex ridges. Incomparable to almost anything you’ve seen before, the Bungle Bungles Ranges were formed more than 350 million years ago and showcase some of the most spectacular species of flora and fauna in the world.
Tip: There’s not much accommodation around the ranges so pre-planning is essential. Whilst you can definitely
through the tracks to experience the sandstone mounds at full scale, veering off the track is prohibited. It’s worthwhile booking a plane or helicopter ride in advance to view this landmark from the sky too.
This guest article was written by Jayde Ferguson, who writes for Broome, Kimberley & Beyond – a specialised travel wholesaler with over 20 years’ experience living, working and travelling throughout Northern Australia. You can catch Jayde on Google+.
Photos in this post: Jo and Dave Castro
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