Follow the sounds of a didgeridoo, soar over ancient landscapes and soak in a natural hot spring – the wonders of Western Australia and the Kimberley are all for the taking.
A journey through Western Australia and the Kimberley can feel like you’ve left the rest of the world behind – its ancient landscapes are unlike anywhere else on Earth. Here, natural landmarks are measured on a grand scale, thousands of years of Aboriginal history whisper on the breeze and the sprawling wilderness humbles all who visit. Jaws will drop over the orange-and-black-striped domes of the Bungle Bungle Range, the natural amphitheatre of Cathedral Gorge and the lush pockets of El Questro. The magnetic pull of going off-grid and discovering your own backyard has never been so strong.
Read on to discover the most unmissable, awe-inspiring things to do in Western Australia and the Kimberley.
Take a walk through Aboriginal history
Learn about Dreamtime stories and ancient Aboriginal rock art during an eye-opening cultural sunset walk in Kununurra / Goonoonoorrang, the eastern gateway to the Kimberley. Meet your guide at the Waringarri Arts centre and learn about Miriwoong culture by visiting local public art sites. You’ll also experience a traditional Mantha welcome, taste homemade damper (soda bread) and bush foods, and listen to the soul-stirring sounds of the didgeridoo in Mirima National Park as the sun sets. With all five senses engaged, this cultural walk is a truly immersive experience.
Soar over the ancient Purnululu National Park
The UNESCO World Heritage-listed Bungle Bungle Range in Purnululu National Park is a sight to behold: the first impression is giant beehives, with great orange-and-black-striped domes that erupt from red dust plains. This iconic Western Australia landmark is breathtaking to experience from the ground, but truly out of this world when viewed from the sky on a scenic flight. Aboard a high-winged aircraft, glide over the Bungle Bungle Range and gauge the true vastness of the national park. You’ll also fly over Lake Argyle and the waterways of Ord River, other A-list Western Australia landmarks.
Hike across epic landscapes at Cathedral Gorge
Keen walkers can’t miss the chance to embark on the four-kilometre return trek through Cathedral Gorge, one of the most enchanting and instantly recognisable landmarks in the Kimberley. The spectacular red rock natural amphitheatre is renowned for its acoustics, so if you’re an inspiring singer, here’s your chance to test your talents. During the wet season a waterfall cascades from the roof of the gorge into a pool at its centre: take a seat and watch for a while for a meditative moment in nature.
Fish for barramundi at Ivanhoe Crossing
Who would’ve thought an old river crossing would be the perfect place to fish for your dinner? Ivanhoe Crossing was originally part of the main Kununurra to Wyndham road, but since the Ord River Irrigation project in the 1960s, the river now flows year-round, so the crossing is only accessible during the drier months aboard a trusty 4x4. Pull up to the crossing, cast a line and cross your fingers you’ll get a bite from the elusive barramundi. If all else fails, at least you can enjoy a fiery sunset from across the river.
Go back to basics at El Questro
El Questro is a utopic nature area home to natural thermal springs, leafy gorges, epic waterfalls, quiet rivers and jaw-dropping lookouts. One of the best ways to experience this is by horseback. Clip-clop your way through the park, crossing rivers and stopping for photo opportunities while your horse enjoys a nibble on grass. This is a true nature experience that is sure to form a highlight in your holiday reel. Afterwards, treat yourself to a luxury stay at El Questro Homestead, a 10-suite retreat nestled amid the rugged landscapes of the Kimberley.
Soak in a natural hot spring at Zebedee Springs
A heaven-sent natural thermal spring awaits, deep in El Questro. After a 1.5-kilometre return walk through a pre-historic livistona palm forest, Zebedee Springs appears like some sweet desert oasis. Under the shade of the lush fronds, discover inviting thermal pools and bubbling waterfalls which work to soothe the tired muscles of a keen explorer. Enjoy a long soak, close your eyes and listen for the songs of native birdlife. Zebedee Springs is open to visitors from 7am to 12pm, and exclusively open to El Questro Homestead guests in the afternoons.
Ready to explore? Check out our handpicked Western Australia escapes.
For more WA bucket-list experiences, read Western Australia’s Ultimate ‘Wander Out Yonder’ Bucket-List Adventures.
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