Now is the perfect time to visit Western Australia’s stunning Coral Coast. This beautiful region offers some of the most striking natural wonders in the world, from the white sand beaches of Monkey Mia and Coral Bay to the vivid colours of the Ningaloo Reef.
Explore the best of the region and discover this incredible coastline with our guide to the Coral Coast’s must-see sights.
Featured image copyright: mary416
Ningaloo Marine Park
Copyright: Krzysztof Odziomek
The months between April and June every year are a particularly special time in the Coral Coast thanks to the arrival of the majestic Whale Shark at the Ningaloo Marine Park in Exmouth. Once a year these gentle giants congregate in the area for the spawning of the reefs – one of the few places on earth where large numbers of these elusive Whale Sharks gather. A number of day tours are available, offering the once-in-a-lifetime chance to snorkel alongside these amazing creatures in their natural habitat. On the way back to shore, visitors can also catch a glimpse of some of the reef’s other famous residents; including humpback whales, manta rays, and spinner dolphins to name a few.
Copyright: Chung Ooi Tan
Monkey Mia is a popular attraction in the Shark Bay Marine Park, and for good reason – this area of jaw-dropping natural scenery is a natural reserve for bottlenose dolphins and one of the best places in Australia to interact with these intelligent marine animals. The dolphins here are famous for swimming up to shore to interact with humans while park rangers closely supervise, protecting the animals and teaching visitors about this amazing phenomenon. When the dolphins are not at shore, there are guided kayak and boat tours where visitors have a chance to see dolphins, dugongs, manta rays, sea turtles and sharks in their natural habitat further out at sea.
Coral Bay is one of the few places in the region where the coral extends all the way up to the shoreline – the coral and fish are accessible to all, providing the perfect chance to experience the underwater beauty of the area without going on a full scale snorkeling expedition. Back on shore, the gleaming white sands are perfect for enjoying a sunny, relaxed afternoon outdoors.
Kalbarri Coastal Cliffs
Kalbarri National Park offers a stark contrast to its gleaming white sand and sea – the rugged landscapes along the coast are an adventurer’s dream, offering everything from hiking to surfing and diving. The stunning cliffs boast spectacular views, while the gorges and formations carved by the Murchison River are ideal for a tranquil moment of contemplation after a satisfying hike.
Carnarvon Banana Plantation
Copyright: Dejan Novkovski
The Canarvon Banana plantations along the Gascoyne River have been in operation since the 1940s and produce nearly all the bananas consumed in Western Australia. Many of the plantations offer tours to visitors, where you can see the environments in which tropical fruits like bananas and mangos are grown. Of course the best part is sampling them fresh from the tree, as well as indulging in other local delicacies like home-made ice cream and dried fruit.
Copyright: Karen Kaspar
The stunning wildflowers of the Coral Coast are one of the most popular attractions in the region and an easy journey from the comfort of the Pan Pacific Perth hotel. Head along Brand Highway then go west along Bibby Road towards Cervantes – the roadside wildflowers in Badgingarra National Park are stunning year round. The Pinnacles Desert is another sensational vantage point for viewing wildflowers – heath, acacia, myrtle and banksias are just a few varieties to be discovered.
Have you ever visited the Coral Coast? What are your favourite things to see and do?