We are Amy & Lyndon, Bimble About, and we are a young couple from Melbourne travelling around Australia in our van. We realised after travelling for three years abroad, we hadn't seen much of Australia ourselves. After some research we found that driving around was the best and really only option for seeing this mammoth of a landmass, so we decided to knuckle down, save hardcore and buy our first home - a Toyota Hiace.
Our van has now been our home for eight months, four of those months spent in Western Australia, and we are absolutely loving it. As we both love the ocean, we were super keen to reach Western Australia. Known for having some of the best reefs and beaches, it was always going to be high on our list. From Ningaloo to Kalbarri to Horrocks on the Indian Ocean Drive, we were gobsmacked at the clarity and colour of the ocean, the amazing walks and national parks and best of all, the lack of people around. Visiting parts of Western Australia can sometimes make you feel like you're the only people left in the country. You have everything to yourselves which gives you a huge sense of freedom and appreciation while travelling.
The Coral Coast was definitely a highlight for us travelling Australia so far and we hope that more people take the opportunity to visit this amazing stretch of coastline. Here's our story on why we chose to 'bimble about' Western Australia (WA) on the Coral Coast Highway.
Town Beach (Exmouth)
Although Exmouth is hugely popular for the deep sea activities (fishing, whale sharks, diving) we were blown away with the amount of quality beaches this place had to offer. Town Beach is the most popular with the locals as it is just a 5 minute drive from the centre of town. We spent the majority of our down time at this beach, lazing around in the sun and enjoying the gentle lapping of the waves while watching pods of whales swim by, and by the way... SUPER close to shore.
Also, can't beat the local coffee van parked on the foreshore each morning.
Vlamingh Head Lighthouse (Exmouth)
Whilst staying in Exmouth we caught up with an awesome couple living the van life just like us. On our last night, we couldn't say no to a sunset hangout with a few beers, overlooking the hugely popular Vlamingh Head Lighthouse. It was a perfect end to our time in Exmouth - made even better by the fact we got to share the beauty of this place with others!
Shell Beach (Shark Bay)
This is one of our favourite places in WA so far, Shell Beach, and it definitely helped with 28°C, glass-out water, and 2 knot winds. The beaches here are made up of billions of cockle shells - originating from the Shark Bay Cockle that call these waters home. The 'sand' on these beaches can be as deep as 10 metres and back in the day, they used to make blocks/bricks to build with from these little shells.
There is so much interesting history in this area of the world, and we could go on for days but we honestly just loved the stark contrast of the bright blue water with the pearly white cockle shells. It's a MUST visit for anyone heading to WA!
Kalbarri National Park (Kalbarri)
Western Australia has a lot of National Parks - some coastal, some inland - this one was both. We started our adventure in Kalbarri National Park with what we thought was bright an early, arriving around 07:30 am - not early enough as there were already 3 cars there!
The first stop on the agenda was the super popular 'Nature's Window' and boy oh boy did it not disappoint. Arriving later than expected, we didn't quite get a sunrise but ended up timing it perfectly with first light over the canyon which the window actually overlooks. It created this beautiful glow around the edges of the window as well as lighting up the canyon below - we couldn't believe our eyes!
Next stop was the 8 km 'loop walk' which took us down to the Murchison River and through the gorge it has carved out over thousands of years. Over our journey, we have seen some beautiful rocks (we actually get quite excited about them nowadays) and the striated bands of red and white sandstone throughout the gorge really blew us away. Over the 3 hours it took us to walk this trail, we didn't come across another soul (apart from a couple of kangas and some swans) - it was one of the most serene and picturesque walks we've done. We felt more invigorated than tired at the end of it!
Last section of our Kalbarri adventure was the coastal cliff region. There's some epic surf here but we came for the views of the sandstone cliffs and deep blue. We were lucky enough to see this place during sunset. Words/photos can't describe the feeling of watching the white coastal cliffs glow in the evening sun, standing 100 metres above some of the clearest yet deepest blue water you could imagine. We couldn't have asked for a better way to say goodbye to Kalbarri.
Horrocks Beach (Horrocks)
Won Australia's #1 mainland beach in 2018 - and it's easy to see why! This place was crazy beautiful. There were flowers blooming everywhere we looked, crystal clear turquoise water, the whitest sand, a quaint little jetty and absolutely no one around. We were in heaven.
Ended up spending the whole day here. Even ate our dinner on the beach watching the sun set. We hadn't even heard of Horrocks Beach and it was actually a last minute decision to turn off the highway after reading a road sign. This exact place is the reason why we never plan too far in advanced, or at all. We love finding hidden gems (well... hidden to us, maybe to not the rest of the WA) like this and it is the reason why we started our road trip.
Point Moore Lighthouse (Geraldton)
We love Geraldton. We love it's location. We loves its beaches. We love its eateries. Most of all, we LOVE that they offer 24hr free camp sites to non self-contained vehicles (such as us). A big bonus that they're right underneath their famous lighthouse. Like Chris Hemsworth, this thing doesn't take a bad photo, no matter what angle. Believe us, we tried.
If you go for a little 5 minute stroll down the beach you may even catch the osprey watching another day come to an end in its nest. It was a short visit but thank you Geraldton for your awesome free camps, birds, lighthouses, eateries and people.
Coalseam National Park (Mingenew)
If you didn't know what happiness feels like, go lay in a field of flowers. Instant happiness. You're welcome.
We didn't even realise it was heading into wildflower season until we were driving down the highway going "Woah! Look at all those flowers! "Wow - there's more there!" "And there" "There as well..." "Hmm... we should definitely google this". Turns out we hit the jackpot in terms of Anthophilia. There were flowers blooming everywhere! Purple, yellow, orange, pink, blue - it was crazy! We thought we'd seen it all just along the side of the roads until we headed to Coalseam National Park. We're sure its a nice park throughout the year but the end of winter it just TURNS IT ON and becomes one of the coolest places you can visit in WA.
We spent a good few hours walking around taking photo after photo and just having a genuinely happy time.
The Pinnacles (Nambung National Park)
One of the most unique and unusual national parks within Australia, Nambung National Park or The Pinnacles. Grab your car and navigate your way around the winding roads of the Pinnacles. If you want a closer look, pull into one of the parking bays and wander the dunes on foot. Nambung is amazingly beautiful and completely interactive. You will get so immersed you'll forget which planet you are on!