THE KIMBERLEY REGION IN THE NORTH EAST OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA
Australia's north west offers wilderness, spectacular scenery, adventure, an unique and friendly population,
and a variety not found elsewhere in the world. Centred around Broome and Kununurra everything is 'big'.
Vast distances between coastal oases, massive iron ore deposits, flooding rivers, tides which rise and fall
some 10 metres, salt water crocodiles. red ochre, loose surface roads, individual indigenous tribes in remote
communities with a fascinating culture, and much more. It is an area of adventure.
Here you will find the massive Lake Argyle, created when the mighty Ord River was dammed in the 1960s, not far away
the Argyle Diamond Mine gives up rare pink diamonds; massive iron ore mines transport their wealth along
dedicated railways they built themselves to reach busy ports and eventually their overseas destinations.
At sunset you can ride a camel along the clean white sands of Broome's Cable Beach or you can take a flight over
the towering Bungle Bungles. The Kimberley is a place of fascination and reward. Don't miss it.
BROOME AND CABLE BEACH
Broome was once known as the 'Pearling Capital of the World' and divers, mainly Asian, harvested them from oysters
deep below the crystal waters off the coast. Today it is better known for the brilliant white sands of Cable Beach
and the spectacular sunsets. Millions of photos have been taken similar to the one opposite as the daily camel safari
follows the waterline along the beach.
You can still buy pearls in Broome and a museum and pearl farm should be on your tour agenda. There are headstones to
some 900 of those divers who lost their lives in the industry, and songwriter Ted Egan, has immortalised their endeavours
in his popular ballad 'Sayonara Nakamura'.
At Gantheume Point there are dinosaur prints in the sandstone dating back 130 million years and a popular activity is
a visit to one of the few outdoor cinemas left at the Outdoor Picture Garden.
At Roebuck Bay you can see the 'Staircase to the Moon', an optical illusion as the full moon rises and reflects off the
tidal flats, visible for only three nights a month from March to October.
Broome has extensive and varied accommodation and an adequate shopping centre.
KUNUNURRA: Oasis in the Desert
Charter scenic flights over the massive, ochre and black striped, beehive shaped, mounds which make up
the Bungle Bungle Ranges in the World Heritage-listed Purnululu National Park. Believed to be some 350 million years old,
it will open the wonders of the Kimberley region to the mind. You can also reach them in a 4WD on a loose surface road
from near Halls Creek and explore them by vehicle or on foot. Limited camping is available.
Towering geological domes rise up to 578 metres above sea level throughout the park concealing
sheltered gorges, crystal-clear pools, prolific palms, and varied wildlife amongst living Aboriginal history.
The Kununurra area spans over 1,000 square kilometres and is the first settlement west of the NT/WA border along
the Great Northern Highway (1) entering from the Northern Territory, and a centre for touring this fascinating area. There is
accommodation and most shops and services.
The vast Lake Argyle, just to the south, was created when the extensive Ord River, with a catchment area of somes 46,000 square
kilometres was dammed in 1963 and feeds a major agricultural region producing vegetables and fruit for local and export use.
Kununurra takes its name from the aboriginal for 'big water' and really lives up to its name.
Cruises along Lake Argyle will reveal freshwater crocodiles, wallabies, lizards, wetland birds, fish and
dramatic cliffs. Visit the deep waterhole under Black Rock Falls or take a short drive to see the Argyle Diamond
Mine with its rare pink diamonds. Kununurra - So much to see and do.
Cape Leveque on the Dampier Peninsula is 210km north of Broome along a partly loose surface road
leading to the Kooljaman Resort, run by aboriginals, and providing accommodation and restaurant meals.
A 4WD vehicle is recommended for the trip which takes around 3 hours.
Dampier Peninsula: A Coastal Wilderness
The northern sections of the peninsula are on aboriginal land and travellers are requested not to deviate from the
main road as there may be sacred sites along tracks off the road. Many small indigenous communities populate
Eco and nature based experiences include brilliant sunrises and sunsets, swimming in azure waters, photography,
beachcombing, bush tucker tours, spectacular walks, whale watching and bird spotting. Scenic flights over the Buccaneer
Archipelago are available and activities include mud crabbing with a local guide, snorkelling, charter boat trips, tag-a-long 4WD tours,
cultural tours and fishing.
Visit the Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm, the oldest working pearl farm in Australia offering limited accommodation and tours.
Take a Giant Tides tour to see a spectacular natural phenomenum as tides rise and fall some 10 metres in this
See the old mission built by French Palatine monks near Beagle Bay in 1890
with its mother-of-pearl alter, a remnant of the pearling history on the north west.
Magnificent sunsets over King Sound from Derby Wharf are a feature of the region around Derby.
Massive tides up to 12 metres create a great fishing opportunity and Barramundi and mud crabs
are a sought after delicacy of the area.
Derby and the Buccaneer Archipelago
Take the the Pigeon Heritage Trail tour to discover the legend of aboriginal leader and renegade
Jandamurra and see the 1,500-year-old Boab Prison Tree, with its girth of more than 14 metres.
From Derby, you can take a boat or fly to the Buccaneer Archipelago with its many islands and home to
South Sea Pearl farms and the famous Horizontal Waterfalls.
Take a scenic flight and see how these tidal movements force the seawater through
a narrow gap in the cliff walls as the tide ebbs, creating an amazing waterfall.
GIBB RIVER ROAD
The Gibb River Road is becoming more and more popular with adventure travellers wanting to add
a bit more to their around Australia trip and provides an off-the-bitumen experience for
visitors to the north east of Western Australia.
Exploring the Gibb River Road and Mitchell Plateau
The road takes you between Derby in the West and Wyndham or Kununurra in the east, a distance of around
700 kilometres, although not all of it is the Gibb River Road.
The road runs parallel and north of the Great Northern Highway and includes gorges, rivers and remote aboriginal
settlements, aboriginal rock art, great fishing to the north, walk trails, waterfalls, and the
extensive Mitchell River National Park.
There is varied accommodation along the way ranging from camp sites and station homesteads to resort
accommodation at El Questro at the eastern end.
Extensive information on the Gibb River area can be found at
The Gibb River Road Website maintained by locals Taffy and Kim.