Western Australia Kimberleys Holidays
This is a region that stretches from the Northern Territory border in the east, across to the coast in the west and south to the Great Sandy Desert. This part of Western Australia offers the oldest landscapes in the world's oldest continent.
Despite the technology advances of the twentieth century, the Kimberleys remain an untravelled and very remote area of wild coastline, river gorges, massive eroded rock formations and huge cattle stations.
The period between May and October is the best time to visit. Travel in the region is dominated by the extremely hot, monsoonal Wet Season between November and April which turns most of the creeks and rivers into impassable barriers for days and sometimes weeks.
Attractions in this region are often hundreds of kilometres apart and usually require permits for entry where the site is under Aboriginal ownership. Access to the Kimberleys is usually via Broome in the west or from Darwin in the east and most of the tour operators are based in those two centres. 4WD rentals are ideal for the adventurous traveller capable of being self sufficient in this environment. However, the arm chair traveller will obtain the best value from their visit by booking with a tour operator with the knowledge of local conditions and highlights.
Places Of Interest - The Kimberleys
Broome - a remote town with a long history in pearling and mother-of-pearl and which has evolved into a popular holiday destination. Nearby attractions are the pristine Cable Beach, the dinosaur footprints and eroded coloured rock formations at Gantheaume Point, Broome Crocodile Park and Willie Creek Pearl Farm. Sunset camel rides, birdwatching at Roebuck Bay and shopping at Chinatown.
Broome has excellent fishing in the local tropical waters and terrific sunsets at Cape Leveque at the tip of the Dampier Peninsula. Broome accommodation ranges from backpacker resorts to luxury resorts.
Derby - a good jumping off point for exploration of the gorges in the region and flights over King Sound and the Buccaneer Archipelago. Derby was once a thriving port for shipment of cattle from the huge cattle stations of the region. A huge boab tree known as the Prison Tree is a local landmark. There is an administrative centre with some local history at Wharfinger's House.
Mt Barnett - Gibb River Road - a more direct route between Derby and Kununurra/Wyndham with access to many of the popular Kimberley gorges sites on the way. An unsealed road, only for 4WD vehicles and not recommended for the casual traveller without local knowledge and understanding of local conditions. The first 300 km of the Gibb River Road to Mt Barnett passes Lennard River Gorge, Adcock Gorge and Galvan's Gorge. The next 400 km to Kununurra passes the Barnett River Gorge, Mitchell Falls, Cockburn Ranges, Chamberlain Gorge and Emma Gorge.
Fitzroy Crossing - another gateway to some of the region's attractions. Nearby Geikie Gorge on the Fitzroy River is a wildlife haven in a small National Park, 90 metre high Windjana Gorge on the Lennard River and Tunnel Creek in the Napier Ranges.
Halls Creek - a tiny cattle centre with a short lived gold rush history. Gold fossicking is possible behind the town. The Wolfe Creek Meteorite Crater lies to the south and is best viewed from the air.
Wyndham - once a major cattle centre of the region but Kununurra has now become the major town in the area. The Five Rivers Lookout at Mt Bastion is a popular spot.
Kununurra - centre for the Ord River Irrigation Scheme. There are cruises on the Ord River and Lake Agyle and tours to the Argyle Diamond Mine start from Kununurra. A bustling tour operations industry with much of it focused on the nearby Purnululu National Park, home of the famous, and not to be missed, Bungle Bungle rounded dome rock formations. The Bungle Bungles are best seen from the air.