The AQWA experience is a fascinating journey along Western Australia's incredible 12,000km coastline, internationally renowned for its unique ocean conditions and unrivalled diversity of marine life.
Overlooking the stunning sunset coast AQWA is the only place in Western Australia where you can come face to face with thousands of marine creatures, travel beneath three million litres of Indian Ocean waters without getting wet and interact with live animals in AQWA’s Touch Pool – all in one day!.
Stokes National Park covers an area of 10,667 hectares, excluding 16.19 hectares for preservation of a historic homestead - Moir Homestead. There is coastal scenery from the inlet offering ocean fishing and sandy beaches with good swimming. The vegetation includes mostly coastal heath, scrub and areas of dense low forest. Trees are mainly yate and paperbarks. Fauna includes the grey kangaroos, occasionally seals and more than 40 different types of bird life. Camping facilities are available with caravan pads and borehole toilets in designated areas. Other areas are available for discreet camping only. The closest main town for supplies and other accommodation is Esperance, or supplies can be obtained from Munglinup, 30 kilometres west of the Park. There are barbecue facilities and tables available at the inlet along with borehole toilets. There is no water available here or at the camping areas. The best time to visit is September through to April. Contact the ranger on duty for more information and advice on equipment required. Exercise caution when boating in the inlet. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience.
Often referred to as a mini version of the Bungle Bungle range, Mirima (Hidden Valley) National Park just north of Kununurra offers bushwalking and stunning views over the East Kimberley. The park is also a significant place for the local Aboriginal Miriuwung people, who have lived in the area for thousands of years. Hike through the area and you're likely to come across Aboriginal rock paintings, engravings and artefacts. The secluded valley harbours rugged cliffs, gullies and ridges which transform in colour to deep orange at dawn and dusk. The late afternoon is also when you'll see birds of prey swoop majestically over the landscape. The park is home to a big variety of wildlife including many species of birds, all manner of reptiles, wallabies, bats, dingoes and echidna. You can see stunning views over Kununurra and the surrounding areas from a number of vantage points - bushwalking trails take you to the best spots. There's no camping allowed in Mirima National Park but there's plenty of accommodation available in Kununurra which is just a two minute drive away.
Windjana Gorge National Park in the Kimberley region offers stunning bushwalking through the outback wilderness. Rated as one of the most beautiful of all the gorges in this frontier region, Windjana is rich in vegetation and wildlife. The walls of Windjana Gorge rise up from floodplain of Lennard River, reaching 100 metres high in places. Take a dip in refreshing permanent water holes and feel the power of Mother Nature which carved out the gorge over hundreds of millions of years. A three and a half kilometre easy walking trail winds through the gorge - you'll see primeval life forms fossilised within the gorge walls. Keep an eye out for birds, fruit bats and fresh water crocodiles. Windjana Gorge National Park is about a two hour drive from Derby and is best visited during the mild weather conditions between May and September. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Lesueur National Park is a must see for all wildflower lovers and botanists with more than 900 species of flora identified within the park. Visit during the wildflower season for a spectacular sight when a profusion of colour covers much of the National Park. Drive to the top of Mount Lesueur for a magnificent panoramic view across the park and the pretty coastline of Green Head. Lesueur National Park is one of the most significant reserves for flora conservation in Western Australia. Several species cannot be found anywhere else in the world and have been included on an endangered list. The National Park is also home to more than 100 species of birds that rely on the flora for their survival. Make sure you take a camera to capture the beauty of the region and hopefully if you are lucky you may even see the extremely rare Carnaby's Black cockatoo. Lesueur National Park is just a short 15 minute drive north east of Jurien Bay and three hours' drive north of Perth. Please note that animals and pets not allowed in the park.
The Torndirrup National Park is home to a range of spectacular natural wonders, and is the most visited national park in Western Australia. The drive through Torndirrup is stunning and leads down to the rugged southern coastline. Take a short walk to the famous Gap and Natural Bridge. Both have been formed over hundreds of years by the ocean eroding a large gap in one rock face and a natural arch in another. A twenty minute walk will lead you to the blowholes, a split in the rock where the waves force air out the top. If you can time your visit on a rough day you will hear an impressive roar resulting from the massive force of the water. Watch out for the spray that usually follows! For the walking enthusiast, take one of the easily accessible bush walks through the park to see a plethora of stunning wildflowers in season. Alternatively for the more adventurous, take the medium grade coastal walk to Bald Head, the landmark that once guided explorers into King George Sound. Torndirrup National Park is a fifteen minute drive from Albany, which is a four and a half hour drive southeast of Perth.
The Ghost House Walk Trail takes you on a journey to discover the natural and cultural history of the wilderness areas in Yanchep National Park, an hour north of Perth. The moderate 9.2 kilometre loop Top Trail allows trail users to encounter the sights and sounds of the pristine wetlands and discover the historic remains of the 'Ghost House'. Join the trail via the board-walked Wetlands Trail. Pristine wetlands, tuart forest, Banksia woodlands and coastal heath provide plenty of interest and variety. The trail ends at Cabaret Cave and is a short walk back to the hub of Yanchep where you can stop for a coffee, refreshing ale or lunch. One of the draw cards of Yanchep is the koala boardwalk. Koalas are fussy eaters and only eat certain types of eucalyptus leaves. On the trail you pass through the koala feed plantation. Turn this into a two-day walk by taking your swag and spending a night under the stars at Shapcotts campsite, nestled under a grove of grand old Tuart trees. Yanchep National Park is a hub of walk trails of varying length and difficulty. Please sign in and out before adventuring on the longer trails.
See giant red tingle trees at Walpole-Nornalup National Park in the south of Western Australia. These towering old growth forests are part of the Walpole Wilderness area and have remained virtually untouched. To get up close to these pristine forest beauties visit the Valley of the Giants and Tree Top Walk to the east of Walpole. You can get a magnificent view of the forest canopy from the Tree Top Walk, while the Valley of the Giants leads you to giant red tingle trees with trunks up to 20 metres in circumference. Walpole-Nornalup National Park is also home to a rugged coastline, peaceful inlets, rivers and forests of karri trees. In the south-west of the park, about 5,000 hectares of near-pristine bushland has been set aside for bushwalkers. The famous Bibbulmun Track passes through the Walpole-Nornalup National Park on its 1,000 kilometre route from the Perth hills to Albany. If you're visiting between February and April there's also the chance to see the annual migration and spawning run of the Australian salmon. There is camp sites dotted throughout the park. The park surrounds the towns of Walpole, Nornalup and Peaceful Bay, a five hour drive south of Perth.
Stretching between the two coastal capes, Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park - Cowaramup in the south-west corner of the State offers amazing beach and forest experiences. With world class surf breaks, calm swimming beaches, rocky headlands, tall timber forests perfect for bush walking, stunning caves and excellent camping facilities, this pristine park is well worth a visit. At Cowaramup Bay, mid way between the two capes, you can try your hand at surfing, or throw in a fishing line from the beach and snare a catch of the Indian Ocean's best. The sheltered bay at Cowaramup is also suitable for launching a small boat. Four wheel driving tracks lead to isolated surfing and fishing spots - and in this remote and pristine part of the world it's easy to find your own stretch of sand to enjoy. For adventurers, head to the granite sea cliffs south from Biljedup Beach for rock climbing. There are regular tours for beginners and experts. The town of Cowaramup is also known for its dairy, timber and wine growing industries. Located in the Margaret River wine region, Cowaramup boasts some award winning wineries. Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park Cowaramup is about a three and a half hour drive south of Perth. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Eagle's View Walk Trail is a 15 kilometre moderate loop walk around John Forrest National Park, Western Australia's oldest national park, with impressive views across the Swan Coastal Plain to distant Perth the track passes through varied vegetation types, including heath lands, open wandoo woodlands and mixed jarrah-marri-wandoo forest. This Top Trail takes walkers away from the picnic areas, initially following Jane Brook down the valley. It then climbs up the valley wall to great views of the city and ocean. The trail then weaves its way up and down valleys, creek lines and hills before heading back to the brook. There are different ecosystems along the way and spring wildflowers are spectacular. Hovea Falls is a pretty place for a picnic lunch when water is flowing. The trail follows Jane Brook back to the main visitor's area. Signs every two kilometres advise how far you have walked and how far to go. The trail can be tackled clockwise or anticlockwise. The walk trail brochure is available from the ranger's office, along with the walker's log book. Walkers must register before they head off and on their return.
See fresh water crocodiles, all manner of birdlife, and other native animals like dingos and wallabies at Geikie Gorge National Park in the Kimberley region. The main attraction is the multi-coloured cliffs of Geikie Gorge where the Fitzroy River has cut through fossil reef over millions of years. You can take a cruise along the river to see the gorge and wildlife up close - and learn about Aboriginal Dreamtime stories of the area. Geikie Gorge is an important Aboriginal cultural area and is known by the Bunaba people as Darngku. The national park covers more than 3,000 hectares of land and is also home to a riverine forest of river red gum trees and paper barks. Some areas are covered with wild passionfruit vine. Pack a picnic and enjoy the tranquillity of the wilderness, or go bushwalking along two dedicated trails. Rock climbing is also permitted. The best time to visit the park is from May to October when the weather is mild. You can get to Geikie Gorge National Park by driving about 20 minutes from the town of Fitzroy Crossing.
Beautiful and pristine Stirling Range National Park near Albany is famous for its colourful wildflowers, bushwalking and camping. Stirling Range National Park is home to one of Western Australia's highest peaks, Bluff Knoll. Take the challenge and climb Bluff Knoll, which rises more than a kilometre into the air, or go rock climbing at Ellen Peak. You'll be rewarded with panoramic views of the park and surrounding plains. Bluff Knoll is one of the few places in Western Australia where it snows - but only very occasionally! Stirling Range National Park is known for its staggering range of wildflowers - more than 1,000 different species, some of which are found no where else. Go bushwalking during spring time and you'll be sure to see mountain bells, banksias and orchids. Birdlife abounds in the park making it an ideal place for bird watching. You can see large numbers of parrots and emus, while other common animals are wallabies and kangaroos. There is a camp ground at Moingup Springs and plenty of accommodation nearby. Stirling Range National Park is just over an hour's drive north east of Albany. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience.
A visit to the Tunnel Creek National Park is a truly unique experience that you must include on your Kimberley itinerary. It is close to Windjana Gorge, allowing you to see both landmarks in one day. Tunnel Creek contains Western Australia's oldest cave system. Walk through the 750-metre tunnel which takes you from one side of the Napier Range to the other. Keep your eye out for the many bats, fish and freshwater crocodiles that live in the cave. The tunnel is the oldest cave system in Western Australia. You will get to see little waterfalls coming over the ledges on the sides, and huge stalactites dangling from the ceilings. It is not far off the beaten track, and you don't need a four wheel drive to get there, but you do need a torch! The Tunnel Creek National Park is half way between Derby and Fitzroy Crossing. Allow at least two hours to get there from either direction. Flights run between Perth and Broome, Derby or Kununurra. Drive yourself or join one of the many fantastic overland tour groups visiting the area. Entry is restricted during the wet season.
John Forrest National Park is one of Australia's oldest conservation areas and Western Australia's first national park. Located in the Darling Ranges about half an hour's drive from Perth, the park offers excellent bush walking, mountain biking, scenic drives and rock pools ideal for swimming. Western Australia's colonial pioneers recognised the park's environmental value, declaring it a reserve in 1898. Go walking along one of the trails through rugged wilderness, or along a disused railway line to quiet pools and spectacular waterfalls. You'll also be rewarded with magnificent views over the city and metropolitan area. Popular Rocky Pool picnic area is set among attractive wandoo and paperbark woodland. Here, after winter rains, you can sit and watch the waters of Jane Brook tumble down a series of small rapids into the pool. There's plenty of wildlife to observe including many native birds, possums and bandicoots. In spring time, wildflowers colour the landscape. There are great picnic facilities, extensive walk trails, and limited camping facilities. Tearooms and a tavern are open regularly. The park covers more than 1,500 hectares of land and is best accessed from Great Eastern Highway.
The Loop Walk Top Trail highlights the erosive power of the Murchison River which has carved a spectacular gorge through the Kalbarri National Park in Western Australia's Coral Coast region. Highlights include the iconic 'Natures Window', a natural rock formation which frames the Murchison Gorge. The moderate, eight kilometre Loop Walk Trail starts at the car park for Nature's Window which's a major tourist attraction. Marked by directional markers the trail follows the edge of the cliff, with views of the river. From here the trail works its way down to the river bank. Along the river are sandy beaches, river gums and the possibility of swimming. On the other side of the river, some of the cliffs show magnificent shades of red and pink. Before the river bends towards the Indian Ocean, the trail climbs out of the gorge back up to Nature's Window and back to the car park. Inside the gorge and the temperature can rise, so carry plenty of drinking water (minimum three litres per person). Sometimes the trail follows rock platforms and this can be a scramble at times. Be alert to weather forecasts as the river and gorges can flood after heavy rain.
Formerly the Southern Forests Sculpture Walk, Understory, Art in Nature is an easy 1.2 kilometre loop walk trail which features a collection of artworks in a natural bush setting designed to get visitors to look at their surroundings in a new way. Located in Northcliffe, four hours south of Perth, this unique eco and cultural tourism experience is the first of its kind in Australia. Located behind the Northcliffe Visitors Centre, this Top Trail provides a unique perspective on native forest as artisans of many media have produced artwork that interacts with the natural ecosystem. Collated in an interesting form, you'll want to slow down and look around in order to not miss some of the fascinating installations. Consisting mainly of sculpture, the art also includes poetry, prose and purposely written music. When venturing around the trail the presence of sculpture makes you look differently at the bush - looking into the forest. In looking for art you find the natural art of the forest. Keep an eye out for the little people of the forest; they seem to appear as if by magic. Children can venture to the story nooks and listen to especially written tales of the bush.
Two billion years in the making, Karijini National Park is one of Western Australia's most spectacular natural attractions offering amazing hiking trails through ancient gorges. With massive gorges, crystal clear rock pools and waterfalls, Karijini National Park is a must for anyone with a thirst for adventure. Explore tunnels of marbled rock, clamber over boulders, squeeze through narrow tunnels, paddle through waterways and descend deep into ancient chasms. There's also easy access to stunning lookouts and walk trails of varying levels so everyone can experience this awesome landscape. Permanent water pools means there's always the chance for a refreshing swim. There are excellent picnic areas as well as allocated camping sites within the park. Karijini National Park is located about two hours drive from the town of Newman. It's best accessed by joining a four wheel drive tour. There are a number of tour operators taking visitors from Perth to Karijini and the surrounding region. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
The Porongurup National Park near Albany on Western Australia's south coast overflows with local flora and fauna, and offers excellent bushwalking with stunning panoramic views of the surrounding plain. The park is one of the best places in the south for wildflowers - head here in spring and early summer for colourful displays of bluebells, wattles, hoveas, Banksia, dryandras, hakeas, grevilleas and orchids. There are more than 750 species of plants in the park and perhaps the most spectacular are the forests of karri trees. The ancient granite domes that rise 670 metres into the air are popular with rock climbers, while bird watches flock here to see brilliantly coloured scarlet and yellow robins, as well as rufous treecreepers. You might also spot western grey kangaroos and brush wallabies. There are plenty of scenic picnic spots and the park provides barbeque and toilet facilities. You can drive to Porongurup National Park in 40 minutes from Albany, or about four hours from Perth.
For outback scenery and Aboriginal culture, Mitchell River National Park in the rugged Kimberley region, is among the best in Australia. Spectacular landscapes including the Mitchell Plateau and the thundering Mitchell Falls. A bushwalking track leads to the falls where you can enjoy a refreshing dip. Take a plane or chopper ride over the falls to feel their majestic power. The Mitchell Plateau abounds in wildlife and plants. There's rainforest, open woodlands of gum trees, and watercourses lined by pandanus palms and paperbark trees. The Mitchell River National Park is also home to other beautiful terrain including Merton Falls, Surveyors Pool, Mitchell and King Edward Rivers. The area is home to many ancient rock art sites, most which have remained untouched for thousands of years. There are basic camping facilities throughout the park. Access is by four wheel drive only from the Gibb River Road between Derby and Wyndham and may be limited during the wet season. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Remote and rugged D'Entrecasteaux National Park combines pristine beaches and tall tree forests in a wild and spectacular landscape along the southern coastline near Northcliffe and Pemberton. Here, you can go camping and four wheel driving or bush walking through dense forest and coastal tracks. The beach fishing is first rate, or you can try one of the several river and inlet systems throughout the park. Mobile sand dunes move with the weather, so if you're journeying through this part of the world be sure to take a map and compass - its wild country! Yeagerup sand dunes near Pemberton edge onto a thick jarrah forest - ride the dunes in a four wheel drive then go kite surfing or fishing on the beach. In spring time you'll be rewarded with beautiful coastal wildflowers. Windy Harbour, Salmon Beach, and Broke Inlet are the only coastal areas which are accessible by conventional vehicle. There are camp facilities at Yeagarup Lake, Yeagarup Beach, Carey Brook, Crystal Springs and at Walpole's western beaches. You can access D'Entrecasteaux National Park from Pemberton, Northcliffe or Windy Harbour. It takes about four to five hours to drive there south of Perth.
One of Australia's most remarkable outback landscapes, massive Wolfe Creek Crater National Park, lies on the edge of the Great Sandy Desert in the East Kimberley. Wolfe Creek Crater is the second largest crater in the world, measuring 880 metres across and to a depth about 60 metres below the rim. Go bushwalking and see the crater from the rim - you'll feel dwarfed by its size. There's also an information shelter where you can learn about the landform. The Aboriginal Dreamtime story tells of two rainbow snakes crossing the desert and creating Sturt and Wolfe Creeks by emerging from the ground. For a true taste of the wilderness there's a camp ground with basic facilities. Wolfe Creek Crater National Park is about a two to three hour drive from Halls Creek via the Tanami Road which accessible by conventional vehicles.
Kitty's Gorge Walk Trail is one of the beautiful walks accessible from the historic town of Jarrahdale. An hour's drive south west of Perth, Jarrahdale is an ideal day trip for a walk and lunch at the winery or one of the cafes. Originally a timber mill town in 1872, with the last mill closing in 1997, Jarrahdale is now a historic town using its jarrah trees for tourism instead of logging. Kitty's Gorge Trail is seven kilometres (14 kilometres return) trail that follows the Serpentine River and Gooralong Brook. Along the way, it passes impressive granite outcrops and the brook's many waterfalls. This Top Trail has steep loose sections and uneven ground and requires a degree of fitness. It can be accessed from either the car park opposite the cemetery in Jarrahdale or from the falls car park in the Serpentine National Park. If walking from the township of Jarrahdale include the short loop of Stacey's Track.
Famous for its windswept rocky shores and sheltered pools, William Bay National Park protects the coastline and forest between Walpole and Denmark on the south coast. Green's Pool near Denmark is well known for its turquoise water and white sandy beaches edged by granite boulders which create ideal swimming, snorkelling and diving conditions. Rocks form much of the coastline between Green's Pool and Madfish Bay, extending 100 metres out to sea and creating a reef which bears the brunt of heavy seas. Inside the reef, pools, channels and granite terraces create a fascinating seascape perfect for beachcombing. Pack a picnic and take in the scenery at Elephant Rocks and Waterfall Beach, or try your hand at beach fishing. The famous 1,000 kilometre bushwalking trail, the Bibbulmun Track passes through William Bay National Park and facilities include shelters, camp sites and picnic tables. The trail crosses Parry Inlet, Mazzoletti Beach, and up Tower Hill where you'll enjoy spectacular views over the coastline. Karri trees dominate the landscape of the park and in spring it's beautifully coloured by wildflowers. William Bay National Park is best accessed from Walpole or Denmark which are about a four to five hour drive south of Perth.
There aren't too many places in Australia where kangaroos sunbake on the beach, but at Cape Le Grand National Park this is just one of the many natural highs on offer. This pristine park near Esperance is known for its stunning scenery and idyllic beaches where you can go swimming, bushwalking, fishing and camping. The landscape changes from massive granite outcrops to freshwater pools and unbelievably white sandy beaches with views over many islands. Lucky Bay is home to a colony of friendly kangaroos which are often seen soaking up the sun. It also offers a great camp site and picnic area. With beachside views and tranquil atmosphere, this is camping at its best. There are many excellent bush walking trails through the park which traverse the rugged coast and beaches - enjoy the views and then stop off for a refreshing dip in the ocean. Rock-climbing is popular at Frenchman's Peak and Mount Le Grand. In spring Cape Le Grand National Park bursts into colour as wildflowers bloom, including groves of banksia. You can reach Cape Le Grand National Park by conventional vehicle in about half an hour from Esperance. Day tours operate into the park.
For four wheel driving along vast white beaches, camping out under a star-filled sky, colourful wildflowers, whale watching and swimming at secluded bays, a visit to Cape Arid National Park east of Esperance is a must. This untouched paradise is also known for its excellent bushwalking and beach fishing. Most of the tracks within the park are accessible only by four wheel drive - hit the dirt and you'll be rewarded with beautiful coastal scenery of granite outcrops, sand dunes and stands of mallee trees, banksia and paperbark. If you're camping, there's a good chance you'll spot local nocturnal animals like honey possums, wallabies and kangaroos. Take your pick from scenic picnic spots including Thomas River, Mount Ragged or Seal Creek. Self-guided walking trails range from one to four hours and take you deep into native bushland and along coastal heaths with views over the Southern Ocean - you may even spot southern right whales offshore. Not surprisingly, the swimming is idyllic, while bays like Yokinup are popular for windsurfing. Good camping facilities can be found at Thomas River or Duke of Orleans Bay Caravan Park. Cape Arid National Park is an hour's drive east of Esperance.
At Warren National Park near Pemberton you can go bush walking through ancients forests of karri trees, some nearly 90 metres high. Walk trails wind through the forest floor - you'll feel dwarfed by these old growth giants. You can climb some of the tallest karri trees which were once used as fire lookout towers. These include the famous Gloucester Tree, the Dave Evans Bicentennial Tree and Diamond Tree. There are glorious views from the top of the trees. Canoeing is a favourite on the tree-lined Warren River, while picnic and barbecue facilities make this a popular place to relax in nature. The Heartbreak Trail is a great drive through the park and follows the Warren River. There are designated camping spots on this trail and popular fishing and marroning spots in season. In spring, delicate wildflowers colour the forest floor. The park is a 15 minute drive southwest of Pemberton. Pemberton is about a four hour drive south of Perth. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Earning a place on the National and World Heritage lists, Purnululu National Park is home to the Bungle Bungle Range of Western Australia's Kimberley region. 350 million years in the making, it's the most unique and captivating range on Earth. Take in the full spectacle of these curious beehive domes on a scenic flight from Kununurra or Broome, or an open-door helicopter flight from within Purnululu itself. Covering almost 240,000 hectares, the area has long been used by Indigenous people during the wet season, when plant and animal life was abundant. Yet the Bungle Bungle Range remained hidden from the outside world until 1983, surely making it one of the best kept secrets in history. Stay overnight in the park and you'll discover the ultimate outback adventure. Hike into the Bungle Bungle Range to Cathedral Gorge, Echidna Chasm and other hidden gems. Take a four wheel drive safari. Camp out under the stars. Or immerse yourself in over 20,000 years of Indigenous culture. Selected national park camping grounds across the State can now be booked online. Bed, breakfast and dinner can also be booked through local operators, or base yourself in Kununurra or Broome and join a full-day tour.
The rugged coastline of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park - Yallingup offers excellent fishing and bird watching, world class surf breaks and stunning bush walks. Cape Naturaliste is the most northern point of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste ridge. Here, a lighthouse acts as a maritime guide. There are bush walking tracks nearby with incredible views over the cape including a whale lookout. The granite formations of Canal Rocks and Sugarloaf Rock offer dramatic scenery and are popular among experienced fishermen. The beach and rock area south of Cape Naturaliste is home to some of the best surfing beaches in the State. For excellent swimming conditions head to Yallingup, Injidup, Smiths Beach and Bunker Bay. The Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park is home to a range of native wildlife including possums, wallabies and kangaroos, while rare and endangered red-tailed tropic birds nest on Sugarloaf Rock. Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park Yallingup is about a three hour drive south of Perth. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
There's plenty of adventure on offer at West Cape Howe National Park near Albany. Go rock-climbing up rugged granite cliffs or hang gliding at Shelley Beach. During summer, easterly winds create good steady flying conditions. Take-off for hang gliders is from the lookout car park. There are also white sandy beaches offering idyllic swimming and fishing. Throw in a line from the beach and you could snare a catch of Australian salmon, mulloway, whiting and herring. Scenic bushwalking trails along the coast lead you through virgin bush and offer spectacular views. Some of the best and remote walk trails are in the Torbay area - most are four or five hour return treks. Good sturdy footwear is recommended when hiking through this rugged wilderness area. West Cape Howe National Park is about half an hour's drive west of Albany. Albany is a four and a half hour drive from Perth or you can fly there in just over an hour.
For a four wheel driving adventure along a scenic coastline with dramatic red cliffs and white sandy beaches, head to Francois Peron National Park in the Shark Bay World Heritage Area. Once a sheep station, the park is now one of the most important wilderness areas in Australia and is home to many rare and endangered species. From the cliff tops of Cape Peron you can see dugong, manta rays, turtles and sharks swimming in the water below. The Peron homestead precinct, just six kilometres off the Monkey Mia Road, has a visitor centre, a self guided station walk trail, picnic facilities and even a hot tub where you can soak in artesian water. There are plenty of outback camping facilities at Big Lagoon, Bottle Bay, Herald Bight and Gregories Francois Peron National Park is a 10 minute drive from Denham. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Yanchep National Park offers you a choice of nine interesting walk trails ranging in length from 500 metres to 55 kilometres. Along the way you will witness spectacular scenery and panoramic views from the sea to the scarp. Choose a walk trail to suit your personal level of fitness and time frame. See collapsed cave systems, gorges, pristine coastal wetlands, beautiful lakes, or haunted historic remains. Appreciate the diverse range of trees including Banksia, Tuart, Marri, Stunted Jarrah, Sheoak and Paperbark. During spring kangaroo paws and cat paws are in flower and during July and August, the Yanchep Rose and the Parrot Bush are in full flower. Animal and bird watchers can follow the Carnaby Black Cockatoo or seek out the Black-glove Wallaby and Quenda (bandicoots). Gain an insight into Aboriginal culture following the Yaberoo Budjara trail which is based on Yellagonda, (a significant local Nyoongar elder) and his people's movements in the area. Longer walking trails such as the three and a half day Coastal Plain Walk provides facilities including huts, water tanks and bush toilets. Yanchep National Park is just 45 minutes north of Perth. Trail maps are available from the visitor centre.
See stunning gorges and camp out under the stars at King Leopold Range National Park off the Gibb River Road in Western Australia's Kimberley region. Here you can explore Bell and Lennard Gorges which are among the most magnificent gorges in the Kimberley. The folded rock formations of these and other gorges were millions of years in the making. King Leopold Range Conservation Park is some of the most inaccessible country in Australia and ideal for a four wheel driving outback adventure. The park covers nearly 400,000 hectares of sandstone mountains, palm groves and huge granite outcrops. It includes the formidable King Leopold Range, which reach almost 1,000 metres in height. The range was named in the late 1800s after a Belgium king. King Leopold Range Conservation Park is home to rare plant and animal species and is a haven for birds. You can camp at Bell Creek or at Silent Grove. Mt Hart Wilderness Lodge is within the conservation park and has camping facilities as well as catered accommodation. Access to King Leopold Range Conservation Park is from the Gibb River Road east of Derby. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience.
With beautiful waterfalls, bushwalking trails and an abundance of native wildlife, Serpentine National Park is an idyllic day-trip from Perth. Located on the Darling Scarp, Serpentine National Park is known for Serpentine Falls which cascade over a sheer granite face. The steep slopes of Serpentine River valley create a stunning landscape which is home to all kinds of birds and animals. Go bird watching and you could see as many as 70 different species of birds including red-capped parrots, western rosellas, red-tailed and white-tailed black-cockatoos, and yellow robins. Kangaroos, wallabies, possums and many other animals also call the park home. A 500 metre walk trail runs along the river and leads to the falls. There are barbecues, picnic areas, and public toilets available throughout the park which covers 4,300 hectares of land. Serpentine National Park is about an hour's drive from Perth.
Home to the famous Pinnacles Desert about a three hour drive north of Perth, Nambung National Park is one of Western Australia's most unique natural attractions. Here, thousands of huge limestone pillars rise from the shifting yellow sands and look more like something from a science fiction movie. You can get up close to the Pinnacles on a scenic drive and walk trail that includes an amazing lookout over the park. It's believed the Pinnacles were created millions of years ago as seashells were broken down into sand and then eroded by water and wind. Nambung National Park also features secluded white sandy beaches perfect for swimming and snorkelling. Hangover Bay is one the best known with picnic tables, gas barbecues and a boat launch. The windsurfing and surfing is top-notch - and you might even see a bottlenose dolphin or sea lion swimming offshore. From August to October the vegetation at Nambung National Park springs to life with colourful wildflowers. Please note that animals and pets are not allowed in the park. The park is easy to access by car or you can take a coach or four wheel drive tour to the Pinnacles from Perth.
You can see springtime wildflowers on a visit to untouched Moore River National Park north of Perth. The park has been set aside for preservation and remains virgin bush. Here, there are thickets of tall eucalypts while banksia's colour the landscape in spring time. Moore River National Park covers an area of more than 17,500 hectares in the Shire of Gin Gin, just over an hour's drive north of Perth. The park is open for day visits only.
Yanchep National Park is the perfect place to experience a true Aussie environment in a pristine, national park. Visitors can experience Aboriginal culture (subject to availability), participate in a cave tour and admire heritage architecture, Australian flora and fauna including kangaroos and koalas, walk along the park's trails, enjoy a picnic in the natural surrounds or dine at one of the park's dining facilities. Crystal Cave is open daily for tours and the park offers a choice of nine interesting walk trails ranging in length from 500 metres to 55 kilometres. See collapsed cave systems, gorges, pristine coastal wetlands, or haunted historic remains. Choose a walk trail to suit your fitness level and time frame. For a unique experience, book your special occasion at Cabaret Cave, Perth's only cave for hire. This purpose-modified natural cave is visually amazing, acoustically sensational and naturally air-conditioned. Cabaret Cave has been used for functions since the 1930s, and caters to up to 200 people. If looking at an extended stay, take advantage of Yanchep Inn's luxury accommodation and get an after-dark view of some of Australia's amazing fauna.
Yanchep National Park - Aboriginal Experience is located 45 minutes drive north of Perth city and offers the opportunity for visitors to interact with Indigenous staff, participate in cultural activities and learn a little more about the diversity of traditional Aboriginal culture. Their cultural activities engage the audience, encourage participation, inform, entertain and share the richness of Australian aboriginal culture in a real aboriginal experience. The National Park environment provides a unique setting for cultural activities and specially built performance areas have been developed to accommodate Indigenous tours. These include "Wangi Mia" the main semi-enclosed performance area; Balga Mia an open air area with demonstration Mia shelters constructed near the Koala enclosure. The Heritage listed Gloucester Lodge also provides an additional all-weather venue for larger groups. Yanchep National Park also offers daily tours of Crystal Cave, and boat tours on Lake Wagardu. Enjoy barbecue and picnic facilities, row boat hire (seasonal), scenic walk trails, koalas, kangaroos and an abundance of other native animals and plants.
Rugged sea cliffs and windswept headlands meet the ocean in dramatic fashion at Cape Leeuwin, in the Leeuwin-Naturalist National Park in the south-west of the State. Cape Leeuwin is the most south westerly tip of Australia and one of the best places to whale watch. Here the Indian and Southern Oceans meet, in summer the cape sparkles in the sunshine while in winter fierce ocean swells crash against land. The Leeuwin-Naturalist National Park's home to historic Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse which acts as a maritime landscape and important meteorological site - guided tours are available. Cape Leeuwin is the starting point for the Cape to Cape Track which stretches 120 kilometres to Cape Naturaliste in the north. The bushwalking track journeys through the national park taking in forests of karri trees and beaches. There are many scenic lookouts along the way where you can see humpback, southern right and rare blue whales offshore. For the best swimming head to the protected beaches at Hamelin Bay, Foul Bay and Cosy Corner. Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park Leeuwin is about a four hour drive south of Perth. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Crystal Cave in Yanchep National Park exhibits a multitude of incredible stalagmites which you can view as you wander amongst the picturesque lakes. Take a tour of this magical limestone cave and learn all about the formation of this, and hundreds of other caves, throughout the national park. Tours of the cave take place several times each day, weather pending. It is advisable to call the park before your arrival to confirm the tour is running and you need to book onto a tour at least fifteen minutes before it commences to avoid disappointment. Yanchep National Park is just under an hour's drive north of Perth and features a wide range of attractions. Explore the park's wetlands known as Loch McNess or take the opportunity to participate in an Aboriginal cultural experience. The area comes alive with colour during wildflower season.
Pristine Cape Range National Park near the town of Exmouth offers some amazing outback adventures from four wheel driving to gorge hiking and bush walking - and what's more it adjoins a stunning coastline where you can go swimming and snorkelling. The area is known for the striking contrast of turquoise waters and sandy beaches of Ningaloo Marine Park, and the rugged scenery of Cape Range. Hire a four wheel drive and explore some of the park's famous attractions including Shothole and Charles Knife canyons. A five kilometre bushwalking trail connects the two and offers some stunning outback scenery. Beneath the rocky plateaus is a network of hidden caves and tunnels that harbour unique cave-dwelling animals like wallabies. The rare black-footed rock wallaby thrives in the rock walls of Yardie Creek. You can take a boat tour along the creek for the best view. At Mangrove Bay a bird hide helps you get up close to sea birds and waders. Birds abound at Mandu Mandu Gorge, where there's also an excellent bush walking trail. Cape Range National Park is a half an hour drive from Exmouth. You can fly to Exmouth in around two and a half hours from Perth. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
A great circuit walk, Nancy's Peak traverses the main peak of the Porongurup Ranges 23 kilometres from Mt Barker in the Great Southern region. The difficult 5.5 kilometre Top Trail features a range of ecosystems and the views across to the Stirling Ranges and Southern Ocean are magnificent. Commencing from the Porongurup car park, the trail passes by the 'Tree in the Rock' before climbing to the top of the mountain's ridge. On the way, the trail passes through different ecosystems such as karri forest and moist glades of mosses. Emerging from the forest on the granite outcrops you will see the views to the Stirling Ranges and Southern Ocean. Across the outcrops, the trail continues over a few peaks before descending into a pass between Nancy's Peak and Devils Slide. Once on the main track between the two, it is a fairly simple karri forest ramble back to the car park.
The Yardie Creek Top Trail is located in the spectacular Yardie Creek Gorge, one hour drive from Exmouth. The ancient gorge has deep blue water, red limestone cliff faces and a wonderful array of birds and wildlife including the rare black-footed wallaby and red kangaroos. From the top, the views into the creek and out to the Ningaloo Reed are purely spectacular. Starting at river level, the 1.5 kilometre walk trail slowly climbs up the red rock cliffs over a flat path which then becomes harder as it narrows and requires navigation of rocks and small creek line gullies. The trail follows the gorge, becoming more difficult as you ascend the range; however the views into the gorge are well worth the effort. From the top of the gorge walls, look out for the wide variety of birds and yellow footed rock wallabies that inhabit the rock walls. All activities start at the Yardie Creek carpark where there are toilets and picnic areas. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.
Beedelup National Park is set amidst a beautiful forest in the states southwest. A highlight of the park is the Beedelup Falls. Ensure you bring your camera to capture the beauty of the falls which are spectacular in late winter when the brook is in full flow. In the springtime, you will witness some of the most prolific wildflowers in the area. Close by is a suspension bridge crossing over the Beedelup Brook which provides superb views of the falls. The Park offers several excellent walk trails and includes the "Walk through Karri." This enormous 400 year old Karri tree has a large manmade hole cut through the middle. Stand inside the tree for a unique photo opportunity, knowing that you have 151 tonnes of tree above you. Another attraction is Beedelup Lake; a picturesque and tranquil setting to relax and take in the best nature has to offer. Located just four hours south of Perth and a short drive from Pemberton, the area has plenty to see. Climb the world's tallest fire lookout tree - the Gloucester Tree, take a river cruise down the Donnelly River or visit some of the state's finest wineries.
The moderate four kilometre return Cathedral Gorge walk trail is located in Cathedral Gorge, an astonishing geological formation with amazing acoustics, located within the ranges of Purnululu National Park or the Bungle Bungle Ranges. The Top Trail features unusual bee hive striped formations and deep gorges, making it one of the most fascinating geological landmarks and one of two World Heritage sites in Western Australia. To enter the Bungles requires a two to three hour, 52 kilometres, four wheel drive journey or a flight in by helicopter or small plane. The Bungles are a hub of walks including Mini Palms, Echidna Chasm, Piccaninny Creek and Cathedral Gorge (including Beehives walk). From Piccaninny car park, the walk winds its way through the iconic bee hives, heading down between two walls of rock before opening up into Cathedral Gorge. Water pounding through here in the wet season has created a huge amphitheatre of red rock with a pool of water in the middle (bring a wide angle lens for your camera). The acoustics are so good that music has been played within the gorge. On the return journey to the car park be sure to take the alternative route through the beehives.
Get active and enjoy bushwalking trails, bird watching, fishing and camping at Yalgorup National Park south of Mandurah. The park occupies a narrow coastal strip and is home to 10 lakes that run in a chain. The name Yalgorup is derived from Nyoongar Aboriginal words meaning place of swamp or lake. Lake Clifton and Lake Preston are the two main water ways which harbour a big variety of bird life. Go bushwalking around these lakes and you're likely to see black swans, parrots, kingfishers and several varieties of dotterel. Other animals including kangaroos, wallabies and emus are also common, while the vegetation is a mix of tuart woodlands, paperbark swamps and eucalypts. Go swimming, fishing and camping at Preston Beach, and explore special rock-like formations known as thrombolites. These formations are built by micro-organisms that are so tiny they're not visible to the human eye. It's one of the few places in the State where living thrombolites survive. They provide a unique look at what life was like at the dawn of time. You can see them at the edge of Lake Clifton in March and April. Yalgorup National Park is about half an hour's drive south of Mandurah. Camping in Western Australia's natural areas is a special experience. Selected campgrounds from across the state are now bookable online for a trial period.