My Coral Coast Top Five
The strip of coastline in Western Australia known as the “Coral Coast” runs from Cervantes in the south up to Exmouth in the north. With stunning turquoise waters, enthralling outback national parks and interactions with nature that will blow your mind, there is something for everyone in this neck of the woods. I recently explored the region from Exmouth to Steep Point and here are my Top Five Things to Do on the Coral Coast.
1. Cape Range National Park
Whether it be walk an ancient canyon, snorkel coral reefs, swim with Whale Sharks, Humpback Whales and Manta Rays, take a boat cruise or canoe Yardie Creek, ride a camel along the beach or lock it in low and 4WD across the Range, there is so much to do on this part of the Coral Coast. It does get busy during the school holidays, but otherwise, this is somewhere you can visit all year round.
I was looked after by Ningaloo Lodge, a comfortable and friendly place and an easy walk to the town centre and restaurants.
2. Ningaloo Reef
How about camping on a working station, or chilling for a few days at Coral Bay? I don’t think ‘chilling’ is the right word as there is so much to do. Hire a paddle board, feed the pelicans, explore the dunes on a quad bike, swim with Manta Rays and turtles on a cruise or avoid the crowds, set up at Bullara Station Stay and do day trips along the Ningaloo Coast.
3. Dirk Hartog Island
This is Western Australia’s largest island and the most magical place that I have ever been. You can take your 4WD across via the barge or fly to Monkey Mia and cross by boat. The Homestead is the best place to stay, I recommend the Eco Lodge for a high class gourmet experience. This is also the site of the first documented European landing when Dirk Hartog left a pewter plate back in 1616. Great fishing, 4WDing, snorkelling and relaxing is to be had on Dirk Hartog Island.
I stayed at Dirk Hartog Homestead Eco Stay (courtesy of Tori and Kieran Wardle and Australia’s Coral Coast).
4. Monkey Mia
Get up close and personal with the native dolphins, relax with a glass of bubbles on a sunset cruise and then enjoy a fine dining experience at Boughshed Restaurant or fish and chips at the Monkey Bar. It is easy to forget the rat race when you’re staying at Monkey Mia.
I stayed at RAC Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort (courtesy of the resort and Australia’s Coral Coast).
5. Francios Peron National Park
This is where the desert reaches the sea. Burnt orange cliffs, white sandy beaches and the bluest of blue water and you need a 4WD to see it. With a number of top camp sites dotted around the National Park, you can take your pick. Explore the Peron Heritage Precinct (easy 2WD access) and a dip in the hot artesian bore pool before dropping air out of your tyres and exploring the National Park. High clearance 4WD vehicles and camper trailers are the only recommended vehicles past the precinct. Big Lagoon is the perfect spot for a swim, paddle board or canoe.
I camped at Bottle Bay Campsite and Big Lagoon Campsite.
For more information and to book accommodation and activities, I suggest you check out the website of Australia’s Coral Coast