Food doesn’t get any fresher than Carnarvon fresh. Many of the local growers sell seasonal fruit and vegetables direct from their farms (some are only open for the growing season).
A trip around the ‘Fruit Loop’ is a foodie adventure - take a drive around the South and North River Road plantations and collect some fresh seasonal produce.
You can also visit some of the banana plantations and select from Western Australia’s best produce at the Carnarvon Growers' Market which is held in front of the Visitors Centre every Saturday from mid-May to October.
The Gascoyne River is 865 kilometres long, making it the longest river in Western Australia. Perth's Swan River, in comparison, is about 72 kilometres long. Water supply comes from aquifers (underground water systems) beneath and next to the river.
Thanks to fertile soils around the Gascoyne River, the area supplies about 47,000 tonnes of fruit and vegetables per year, worth about $100 million, including a diverse range of tropical produce such as bananas, pawpaw, mangoes, grapes, tomatoes, avocados and beans.
Carnarvon - home of the Big Banana!
A trip on the Coral Coast isn’t complete without a Chocolate Coated Banana. Don’t forget to get your photo with the 'Big Banana’ at Bumbak's. The major variety of banana grown is the giant Cavendish type, Williams.
The first recorded appearance of bananas in Australia was near Carnarvon, Western Australia in the early to mid-1800s, planted by Chinese migrants. From there the banana industry in Carnarvon really started with a small planting in the 1940s. Since that time it has grown and become the hero of the town’s horticulture industry.
Here's a few fun Carnarvon fruit and vegetable facts:
- If you laid out a years supply of BANANAS end to end, they would extend from Perth to Carnarvon and back around 6 times
- The beautiful warm climate of northern Western Australia produces hot CHILLIES – enough to make more than 1 million bottles of sweet chilli sauce
- The region grows PUMPKINS weighing the equivalent of more than 900 male African elephants
- You can fill more than 2 Olympic sized swimming pools with BASIL pesto made from an annual basil harvest from the Gascoyne. That's a lot of pesto!
- You can make 10.5 million fritters with all the ZUCCHINI produced each year
- All CAPSICUMS start off green but depending on variety and length of time on the vine will turn red, yellow or orange
Check the Fruit and Vegetable seasonal calendar to see what's good to buy and when!