Experience the Extraordinary
Extraordinary experiences await you in every region of this vast and diverse State, while the varied climate – Mediterranean conditions in the south through to the northern tropics – means you’ll always find summer somewhere in WA. You’ll see the beauty and grandeur of WA’s ancient landscape at pristine beaches, rugged gorges, unique rock formations, towering forests, secluded waterfalls and the world’s largest wildflower collection. Other unique Western Australian experiences await in the cosmopolitan city of Perth, with unforgettable cultural and wildlife encounters, vibrant events, exquisite wine and food, and more.
A beach and nature-lover’s dream, Esperance is blessed with squeaky-clean beaches, turquoise waters, untouched islands and colour-filled wildflower country. Among its most famous beauty spots is Australia’s whitest beach, Lucky Bay – set against a stunning seascape of 110 islands of the Recherche Archipelago, even the kangaroos can’t resist lounging here.
It’s a one-and-a-half-hour flight or an eight-hour drive south-east from Perth, making Esperance an ideal get-away-from-it-all holiday. The calm, clear waters of Blue Haven Beach and Twilight Cove, just a short drive from town, are idyllic spots for swimming and snorkelling. Locals say the lagoon just east of West Beach is worth a snorkel too.
If you’re seeking waves, hit the surf at West Beach, Fourth Beach or Observatory Beach. To hook dinner, throw in a line at Tanker Jetty and keep a keen eye out for cheeky local, Sammy the seal.
Back in town, be wowed around every corner along the 40 kilometre Great Ocean Drive. Catching the eye of photographers around the world is the bright pink Lake Hillier on Middle Island – where you’ll witness an astounding medley of colour, either from the air or by cruise (in season).
Margaret River and South West
Surfing, swimming, snorkelling:
Here you’ll find world-class food and wine, beautiful beaches, surfing, cave systems, tall tree forests, whale-watching, wildflowers and the famous wine region of Margaret River. As one of only 36 bio-diversity hotspots on Earth, the South West has thousands of plant species found nowhere else in the world.
The South West is world famous for its spectacular coastline and magnificent surf and swimming beaches. At Prevelly, you can follow in the footsteps of the world’s best surfers who flock to the perfectly named Surfers Point for the annual Drug Aware Margaret River Pro championship. For more tranquil conditions, you’ll find some of Australia’s top swimming spots at Dunsborough, Denmark and Albany. Witness the wonders beneath the water through shipwreck diving, or you can stay dry at the Busselton Jetty Underwater Observatory.
World-class wine and fresh local produce:
Home to six distinct wine regions including world-famous Margaret River, the South West also serves up some of Australia’s best ‘paddock to plate’ fresh produce. Enjoy fresh marron, trout, venison, chocolates, cheeses, cherries, boutique beers and crisp ciders as well as the rare black truffle – more of them are produced in Manjimup than anywhere else in Australia.
You’ll get a bird’s eye view of towering tingle trees in the Valley of the Giants, between Denmark and Walpole, where the world-first Tree Top Walk is suspended 40 metres above the forest floor. The South West is also home to giant jarrah, karri, marri and tuart trees. Near Pemberton you can climb a trio of karri trees, up to 75m high, using climbing pegs to reach lookout towers.
Get hiking along the spectacular coastal Cape to Cape Track, the bushland Bibbulmun Track, or out to the Porongurup Range’s Granite Skywalk. Take off on two wheels along the Munda Biddi off-road cycling experience and other world-class mountain biking paths, or head underground at Ngilgi, Mammoth, Lake and Jewel caves to explore mesmerising labyrinths decorated with limestone crystal formations. From January to April, take an orca tour from Bremer Bay to see the southern hemisphere’s largest killer whale pod in a deep-sea canyon 60 kilometres offshore.
Australia’s Coral Coast and Ningaloo
Home to awesome marine life, endless white sandy beaches and the warm, turquoise Indian Ocean, this region boasts two World Heritage listed sites: the Ningaloo Coast and Shark Bay.
Snorkelling at Ningaloo Reef:
If you’re visiting Exmouth, Coral Bay or the Oceanside pastoral stations north of Carnarvon, this is an absolute must do. The World Heritage listed Ningaloo Reef is regarded as one of the last great ocean paradises on Earth, and you can access this watery wonderland by simply stepping off the beach and into the world’s largest fringing reef.
Swimming with gentle giants:
Join a whale shark tour from Exmouth or Coral Bay for the ultimate wildlife encounter – swimming with the world’s largest fish. Whale sharks visit Ningaloo Reef from mid- March to the end of July. You can also swim with giant manta rays while keeping an eye out for sea turtles, dugongs and game fish.
Extraordinary rock formations:
Acres of incredible limestone spires rise eerily from the sand at the Pinnacles near the coastal town of Cervantes, a little over two hours north of Perth on the Indian Ocean Drive. You can get up close to one of Australia’s most unique landscapes on scenic drives, walk trails and lookouts in Nambung National Park.
Australia’s North West
A billion years in the making, the North West is one of the world’s last true wilderness areas. Here you’ll find ancient gorges, remote stretches of coastal paradise and rich culture and history. The region is primed for a spectacular 2017 tourism season with thundering waterfalls and lush landscapes from record summer rainfalls.
Camels on Cable Beach:
There’s no better way to experience the 22 kilometres of Broome’s iconic Cable Beach than on a late-afternoon camel ride while basking in the orange glow of a west Kimberley sunset. The town also has a fascinating pearling and wartime history, unique melting pot of cultures, dinosaur footprints and the ‘Staircase to the Moon’ effect over Roebuck Bay on certain evenings between March and October.
Best kept secrets:
Get off the beaten path at two of WA’s most spectacular national parks. At Karijini National Park, in the Pilbara region, ancient rocks have been shaped into massive mountains and escarpments, breathtaking gorges and
tree-lined watercourses. Stay in the heart of the park at Karijini Eco Retreat’s tents. The World Heritage-listed Purnululu National Park in the East Kimberley is home to one of WA’s most striking geological features: the Bungle Bungle Range.
The striped, beehive-like mounds are breathtaking from the air, or camp nearby to explore hidden gorges and pools.
Talbot Bay in the Kimberley is home to the world’s only horizontal waterfalls, created when massive tidal movements squeeze water through narrow cliff passages. Aerial tours from Broome and Derby enable you to circle the phenomenon from above, alongside other scenic wonders of the Buccaneer Archipelago, where turquoise blue water contrasts with rugged red cliffs. You can also land and see the falls up close by boat, with the option of staying overnight on a houseboat.