Perth to Dongara (Approx 354km)
Travel north along the Indian Ocean Drive (continues north from Wanneroo Road), through the coastal towns of Cervantes, Dongara, Port Denison and Greenough.
First stop is Cervantes and the unique Pinnacles Desert. Visit the Lobster Shack for a factory tour and late lobster lunch.
Continue along the Indian Ocean Drive to Jurien Bay, where you might see endangered seas lions on the beach whilst you snorkel Australia’s first man-made snorkel trail.
Overnight: Dongara or Port Denison
Dongara to the Abrolhos Islands
Wake up early and drive to Geraldton to enjoy either a full or half day tour of the Abrolhos Islands – a chain of 122 islands off the coast of Geraldton. Fly over the three main groups of the Abrolhos Islands.- the Pelseart, Easter and Wallabi groups and land to experience a guided nature walk of rare birds and animals. See the Batavia ship wreck from above.
Depending on your tour choice, afternoon options include walking the city’s Street Art trails with coffee in hand, paying your respect and enjoying the impressive view from the HMAS Sydney II Memorial or take a tour of the magnificent St Francis Xavier Cathedral with its Byzantine style architecture.
Geraldton to Carnarvon (Approx 480km – 5 hours)
Continue north to Carnarvon, a popular holiday spot for sun seekers. Explore and sample the abundant fresh produce along the “Fruit Loops” – affectionately referred to by locals when driving the scenic North and South River Roads.
Take an evening stroll along The Fascine (Carnarvon’s central waterway), taking in the magnificent sunset views before heading out for a fresh seafood meal at the pub.
Carnarvon to Warroora (pronounced Warra) Station (Approx 215km – 3hrs)
Travel north towards Coral Bay, turn left at the Lyndon Crossing Rest Area and its 23 kms to the Homestead complex. Warroora is a family run sheep and cattle station adjacent to the Ningaloo Reef coastline offering wilderness camping or homestead accommodation on white sand beaches that you have only ever seen in photos
Take a swim in the afternoon, pull out a fishing rod or simply slow down and enjoy the scenery.
Overnight: Warroora Station
Warroora to Exmouth (Approx 190km – 2.5hrs)
Travel north to Exmouth where the nearby pristine Ningaloo Reef is located just metres from the shore in some places. Take a swim in the afternoon, or join a glass bottom boat tour to see the amazing coral gardens beneath the water. Marine enthusiasts may choose to join a night dive or explore the amazing underwater gardens of the Navy Pier. Watch an unforgettable sunset from Vlaming Head Lighthouse on the west side of the cape.
Take a boat cruise or spend the day snorkelling on the reef. Swim with the world’s largest fish, the whale shark (between March and July annually). Surfers can catch a wave at Dunes Beach and also at ‘The Bombie’. Nearby, the ruggedly beautiful Charles Knife Canyon and Cape Range National Park features deep canyons, limestone ranges and spectacular gorges.
Exmouth to Coral Bay (Approx 150km – 2hrs)
Depart Exmouth early for your drive to Coral Bay. Here, the main beach is a snorkeller’s paradise with calm, protected waters and hundreds of fish and coral species just metres from the shore. To explore further out, take a glass bottom boat tour or join a snorkelling, quad biking, or kayaking tour.
Coral Bay is known for its giant manta ray swim (all year round) and fishing charter tours. You can also join a whale shark tour (between March and June annually).
Overnight: Coral Bay
Coral Bay to Shark Bay (Approx 590km – 6.45hrs)
Wake up early and head south along the North West Coastal Highway to Shark Bay. Take in the interpretive signage of the Shark Bay World Heritage Drive, stopping at the Stromatolites of Hamelin Pool and Shell Beach before arriving in Denham. Visit the cliff top lookout at Eagle Bluff for superb ocean views.
Dirk Hartog Island
A most important historic site, Dirk Hartog Island has a prominent place in Australian maritime history celebrating 400 years of being landed. The island is home to rare wildlife and is a major attraction for those seeking an exclusive beach for fishing, snorkelling, swimming or kayaking. Experience the island and its dramatic cliffs by air or access it by land and barge crossing from Useless Loop, outside of Denham.
Overnight: Shark Bay area
Spend some time at the Monkey Mia foreshore early this morning where you’re likely to meet the famous Monkey Mia dolphins, with the first feeding from 7.45am. Enjoy the resort facilities at Monkey Mia or join one of the many tours on offer such as a wildlife cruise looking for Dugongs.
Unwind on a sunset sailing cruise before ending your day dining on the shores of Monkey Mia. See the stars and learn about the indigenous culture of the Malgana people on an after dinner night tour.
Overnight: Monkey Mia
Denham to Herald Bight, Francois Peron National Park (Approx 49km – 1.5hrs)
Ensure you pack lots of water before setting off to Francois Peron National Park - known for its contrasting red cliffs and dirt, white beaches and turquoise waters. The park offers a wilderness camping experience to four-wheel-drivers but has no drinking water so ensure you bring enough for your stay.
Download a map of Francois Peron National Park
Head east towards Herald Bight or navigate north to Skipjack Point lookout for a chance to see marine life as dolphins, rays, dugongs, turtles or walk the Wanamalu Trail. Swim in Bottle Bay, fish at the Gregories or BBQ at Big Lagoon.
Overnight: Camp at Herald Bight or Denham
Shark Bay to Kalbarri (Approx 375km – 4.5hrs)
Head south to Kalbarri. Explore the magnificent Murchison River gorges of Kalbarri National Park, enjoy a fishing tour, river cruise, whale watching charter (late June - November) or spend your day relaxing and taking in the sights of this dramatic coastline.
Today join a tour and enjoy some of the action-packed activities on offer such as abseiling, canyoning, quad biking, sky diving, sand boarding and canoeing. Relax under the stars at the outdoor cinema at Rainbow Jungle, a parrot sanctuary.
Kalbarri to Perth (Approx 590km)
Check out the stunning views from the coastal cliffs before heading south towards Perth. Be sure to stop in for a photo at Port Gregory’s stunning pink lake (just south of Kalbarri) before continuing your journey to Perth. Stop in at Jurien Bay or Leeman to stretch your legs!