There are many ways to enjoy an Australian adventure and admire the dramatic and lovely nature all around. One of those ways is The Warlu Way that follows the path of the Warlu or Dreamtime sea serpent. It takes the traveler through North West Australia and the Pilbara and Kimberley regions of Western Australia. Along the way tourists can delight in ancient and sacred landscapes that are rich in natural beauty and most enchanted with Aboriginal stories.
Your journey begins on the shores of the world’s largest fringing reef, Ningaloo. The Warlu Way will take you 2,480 kilometers through sapphire seas, lush oasis, gorges, hills and many more historical, cultural and natural wonders.
Coral Bay and Exmouth are the gateways to Cape Range National Park and the incredible marine life of the Ningaloo Reef.
At Karijini National Park in northwest Australia you can explore ancient rocky tunnels and see plunging gorges. It gives visitors that chance to paddle through crystal-clear waterways and swim under amazing and lovely waterfalls.
At Dales Gorge travelers can experience the three major highlights of Karijini National Park – swim at Fortesque Falls, see the lovely sights at Fern Pool and see the wonderful Circular Pool.
Hancock Gorge can be an adventure experienced with a Karijini tour guide as you climb down a ladder into a deep gorge and walk through narrow chambers, past lovely rock pools.
Oxer Lookout has an impressive position at the junction of four mighty gorges and it offers the traveler one of the most stunning panoramas in WA. From Joffre Gorge one can get a great view of the gorge’s natural amphitheater and waterfall after the rains.
Weano Gorge will take you to Handrail Pool where you can take a refreshing swim. At Hamsley Gorge you can enjoy a spa treatment while surrounded by amazing rock formations.
The State’s second highest mountain Mt. Bruce offers visitors one of the country’s most scenic walks. There are safari tents available at Karijini Eco Retreat or camping facilities at the Savannah Camp Grounds.
Travelers can find some of the best nature based camping possibilities in the region at Millstream-Chichester National Park. This national park covers an area of about 200,000 hectares around the Fortesque River, the heartland of the Yindjibarndi people. This lush oasis with deep gorges and rock pools surrounded by palms offers a stark contrast to the surrounding landscape of rocky escarpments and rolling spinifex-covered hills. One of the most scenic attractions here is Python Pool. The park has camping areas at the lovely Crossing Pool and Deep Reach that are accessible only by unsealed roads.
The waters of this national park are fed by a run-off from the Hamersley Ranges flowing via the Fortesque River into an underground aquifer. Early European settlers were attracted by the bounty of water and they established an active pastoral station here. Today, the original Millstream Homestead is home to the Millstream Visitor Center and Museum.
The Burrup Peninsula, located in Murujuga National Park, is a small landmass rich with many beautiful wildflowers and a diverse wildlife and an ancient outdoor art gallery. It is located around five kilometers north-east of the town of Dampier. The peninsula is one of the most prolific indigenous art sites in the world and it is thought that the Aboriginal occupation of the Pilbara dates back over 40,000 years. The Yaburarra people, who once lived on the peninsula and the adjacent islands of the Dampier Archipelago left a rich cultural heritage. The Burrup contains one of the most prolific sites for prehistoric rock art in the world.
The peninsula has at least 23 rare plant species like the native fig that grow in humid, fire-protected pockets and creek beds. Some of the mammals here include the northern quoll, Rothschild’s rock-wallaby, echidna, common rock rat and delicate mouse. The shady valleys have temporary pools and provide intriguing wildlife homes. Among the rock piles lives the Pilbara olive python.
The Burrup Peninsula lets visitors explore and see the many various petroglyphs, some of which date back some 20,000 years.
You can see dugong and bottlenose dolphins in the waters of the Dampier Archipelago and between July and September humpback whales can be seen. On the beaches during the nesting season from September to April you can find green, loggerhead, flatback and hawksbill turtles. There are 26 species of seabirds to be seen here. This area offers world-class fishing spots for deep water, reef or sheltered inlet fishing.
Famous for its fish and chips and delicious fresh seafood is the peaceful seaside town of Point Samson. There are many places to find accommodation here from B&Bs to caravan parks and holiday homes. People enjoy taking a stroll at sunrise or sunset along the lovely beach at Honeymoon Cove. In the grassed areas next to the beach people can barbecue or have a picnic.
The oldest settlement in Australia’s northwest is Roebourne, established in 1866, The town was named after the first WA Surveyor, General John Septimus Roe. In the heritage-listed Old Roebourne Gaol visitors can find the Roebourne Visito Center and Historical Museum. The museum offers a look into local pioneer and Indigenous history and showcases local arts and crafts. From here you can take a 52 kilometer walk along the Emma Withnell Heritage Trail.
The trail will take you to Cossack the North West’s first port for the pastoral and pearling industries. It was established in 1863. Today Cossack is a ghost town. However visitors may see many restored historic buildings and hike along the heritage trails. Take a look at the Galbraith Building and see the hand-painted artwork by local Indigenous artists from the Budjee-Nhoor-Pu Aboriginal Enterprise. Visitors can see artwork by artists from around the country at the annual “Cossack Art Awards” that are held every August in the Bond Store. The Old Police Barracks offer hostel style accommodation and you can have lunch at the restored Customs Building.
Built to service the Pilbara Iron workers is the town of Wickham. It was named after J.C. Wickham, the captain of the HMS Beagle, who surveyed the north west coast in 1840. There is a 70-ton haul truck on display at the entrance to the town. Around Port Walcott are secluded beaches and it’s also a popular fishing spot. Spectacular views are available from Water Tank Hill Lookout.
Whim Creek was established in 1872 when copper was discovered nearby and the town grew to include 400 people. At one time this town had two hotels, a police station, a bakery, a racetrack and a blacksmith. Today the only original building left standing is the Whim Creek Hotel.
To the west of the Dampier Archipelago you’ll find the Montebello Islands. These are a group of 100 limestone island offering pristine white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. These islands are great for diving, snorkeling, beachcombing and fishing. They also claim to be the site of WA first shipwreck, the Tyrall, which sank in 1622.
Port Hedland is famous for its massive resource industry, long trains, big ships and salt piles. It is rich with Indigenous culture, pioneering history and wildlife. Here visitors can enjoy fishing, crabbing, whale watching and turtle nesting. Take the award-winning Cultural and Heritage Trail where you can explore Port Hedland’s Indigenous and European history. Visitors can get a tour of the BHP Iron Ore and Dampier Salt shipping area at Nelson Point. Other places to visit are the Dalgety House Museum, the School of the Air and the Royal Flying Doctor Base.
You can get fantastic views from the Town Observation Tower or Koombana Lookout. Take a rest and visit the Pardoo and Sandfire Roadhouses, located north of Port Hedland.
Explore Eighty Mile Beach the longest uninterrupted beach in WA. It stretches for 220 kilometers with white sand, tropical seashells along the rocky shores, sea grass meadows, tidal creeks and mangrove-lined muddy bays. In the summer months you can see turtle nesting and millions of migratory birds on their annual journey from their Arctic breeding grounds.
In the East Pilbara region you’ll find the largest modern mining town – Newman. It is located on the edge of the Western Desert and dominated by Mount Newman. It was named after explorer Aubrey Woodward Newman. A huge iron ore deposit was discovered here at Mt. Whaleback, which is today the site of the largest single open-cut iron ore mine in the world.
Weeli Wolli is a permanent freshwater spring that is home to fish and birds. You can take a dip at Kalgans Pool and enjoy a four-wheel drive adventure on the road to Eagle Rock Falls.
Take a visit to Australia’s hottest town, Marble Bar which is listed in the Guinness Book of Records for reaching 37.8 degrees Celsius or more for 160 consecutive days. However winter offers mild daytime temperatures and cool nights. This is a unique pioneering outback town that was established in the gold rush days in the late 1800s. Visitors can see the Comet Gold Mine and Museum and the Corunna Downs RAAF Base, which was one of the best kept secrets of WW II. You can swim at Chinaman’s Pool, part of an A-class reserve. Visitors can relax at Marble Bar’s Iron Clad Hotel.
The tiny township of Nullagine was established when gold was discovered in 1888. This is a mineral rich area and also offers mining of diamonds and gemstones. All around is a landscape of red granite hills with rock holes, winter wildflowers and wildlife. You can enjoy a walk among the ancient rocks of Conglomerate Gorge and enjoy the tranquility of Elle’s Pool.