West Coast, Ningaloo & Karijini Adventure


The best of Australia’s west is waiting on a 14-day adventure from Exmouth to Perth. From classic outback scenes of auburn landscape and limitless horizons to clear blue waters and dazzling coastline, this journey takes it all in. Look out for whale sharks while snorkelling in Turquoise Bay at Ningaloo Reef, learn about the ancient culture of the Banyjima, Kurrama and Innawonga people at Karijini National Park, watch dolphins being fed in Monkey Mia, explore the rugged landscapes of Kalbarri National Park and marvel at The Pinnacles at Nambung National Park. With a local leader by your side, you’ll see beneath the surface of a land that has so much to offer.

14 days, from

$5,370

per person

GROUP SIZE

14 people max

ACTIVITY LEVEL

3
Trip code: PVKIC
Style: Original
Theme: Explorer

Details

Countries Visited:  Australia
Accommodation: Lodge (4 nights), Outback station cabins (shared facilities) (2 nights), Permanent tented camp (shared facilities) (2 nights), Motel (2 nights), Resort (2 nights), Cabin (1 night)
Transportation: Private vehicle , Boat
Included Meals:

  • 13 breakfasts
  • 4 dinners

Group size: Minimum 1, Max 14

  • Enjoy the turquoise waters of Ningaloo Reef, where you’ll have views of the rich and diverse marine life and colourful coral underneath.

  • Drive to the top of the gorge for limitless views of Cheela Plains, where you’ll have the chance to enjoy sunset drinks and dinner around the campfire.

  • Explore the highlights of Karjini National Park, including Weano Gorge, Joffre Lookout, Fortescue Falls and many other special gems in the area.

  • Spend time relaxing in the amazing rocky environment of Hamersley Gorge and cool off with a dip in its tranquil pools.

  • Join an evening First Nations experience where you will learn about Gutharraguda (Shark Bay) from the Nhanda and Malgana people. Try your hand at playing the didgeridoo or traditional conch shell and taste some bush tucker prepared by your hosts over the open fire.

  • Visit The Pinnacles at Nambung National Park where natural limestone pillars tower above the sand to create an otherworldly landscape.

Itinerary

Show Full Itinerary

Day 1: Ningaloo Reef / Exmouth

Welcome to Exmouth! Meet your local leader and fellow travellers for a Welcome Meeting at the hotel at 11am, then get to know everyone a little better over an optional lunch. Afterwards, it’s time to head out and explore the town and the spectacular surrounding areas with your leader who knows it best. Venture into Cape Range National Park where your leader will introduce you to a world of ancient gorges and glittering coastline. Pay a visit to the famously beautiful Turquoise Bay. With pristine white sands and bright blue waters, this is undoubtedly one of the world’s most breathtaking beaches. Don some snorkel gear and after a short lesson and safety briefing, you’ll dive in to experience this underwater wonderland bursting with beautiful corals and marine life. Enter the water at the southern end of the beach, where the current will naturally take you down the length of the beach with minimal effort. Your guide will be in the water with you, pointing out amazing marine life and ensuring your comfort and safety during your time here. For those that don’t wish to snorkel, you may just choose to relax on the beach and take in the pristine white sands and bright blue waters. Following your snorkel adventure, it’s time to visit the Milyering Visitor Centre in Cape Range National Park. There’s a wealth of interesting displays to explore here – make sure you look for the fossilised megalodon tooth! Later visit the Jurabi Turtle Centre, where you can learn about the life cycle of the three species of turtles that nest from October to March along the Ningaloo Coast. Stop off at several stunning lookout points where you can soak in the scenery and marvel at the iconic Ningaloo reef. After an exciting afternoon, you may like to join your fellow travellers for dinner at a local brewery in the evening and reminisce about the day’s discoveries over a tasty meal and craft beer.

Day 2: Ningaloo Reef / Exmouth

This morning after breakfast you have the chance to don your swimmers for a day on the water. With a full free day you'll have the option of two activities – heading out in search of Ningaloo Reef’s famous seasonal whale sharks (which will need to have been pre-booked), or soaking up the wonders of the reef with another optional snorkel drift (check with your leader for cost). Head back out into the glistening blue and admire the amazing world underwater. This evening is free to enjoy as you wish – your local leader will have plenty of recommendations for the best places to enjoy a fresh seafood dinner, so don’t hesitate to ask them.

Day 3: Cheela Plains Station

Today after breakfast you’ll be saying goodbye to Exmouth and begin the approximately six and a half hour drive inland to Cheela Plains, with stops at Bullara Station for morning tea and Ashburton River for lunch. Along the way you’ll have plenty of time to appreciate the scenery of the outback, before arriving at your destination, a remote outback station. Once here, you’ll drive to the top of a gorge for limitless views of the Cheela Plains, where you’ll have the chance to enjoy sunset drinks and dinner around the campfire with the group before settling into your nearby accommodation and watching the southern night sky put on a show.

Day 4: Karijini National Park

This morning after breakfast you’ll make the approximately 1 hour and 40-minute drive to Tom Price, the gateway Karijini National Park. Once here, explore the Weano Gorge area with a gentle 2.5 km walk that descends into the gorge and finishes at a picturesque pool where you can have a relaxing swim before following the trail back up to the Weano Recreation Area. From here there's also the option of a short walk to the Junction Pool Lookout or Oxer Lookout for stunning views of the junction of four mighty gorges. After lunch, there's the opportunity for another short walk, this time 2km from Jijingunha (Joffre Gorge) Lookout to Karijini Eco Retreat. Refresh with an iced coffee at the Retreat before returning to our camp for dinner.

Note that the trails to Hancock Gorge, Kermit's Pool, and Junction Pool are Grade 5 walks and can only be attempted by very experienced walkers with a high level of fitness and mobility. Due to the general nature of this tour and the safety risks of these very challenging trails we do not include these walks on our itinerary.

Day 5: Karijini National Park

Today you have a full-day guided tour of the highlights of Karijini National Park ahead of you. Start the day with the descent to Jubula (Fortescue Falls), Karijini's only spring-fed and permanent waterfall. Follow the 251 steps down the steel staircase into the 100m deep Ngirribungunha (Dale Gorge). The pool at the bottom of the waterfall is a perfect place for a refreshing swim. Another 300m along the gorge is Jubura (Fern Pool) - a sacred place for the Banyjima, Kurama, and Innawonga people. To show your respect, please enter the water quietly and avoid making loud noises. After lunch, head to the Karijini Visitor Centre. Inside, a range of displays takes you on a journey of places and people, past and present, through stories of geology, plants, animals, and Aboriginal people and their culture. The centre provides employment opportunities for local Aboriginal people and gives you a chance to speak with them and learn about their association with the land. From here, you’ll return to camp for the evening to relax before enjoying another meal cooked by your leader under the southern sky.

Day 6: Karijini National Park / Tom Price / Cheela Plains

After breakfast this morning you’ll depart your safari camp and make your way back to Tom Price to refuel, before heading to Hamersley Gorge, in the northwest of Karijini National Park. Enjoy a walk in Hammersley Gorge including of course the option for a swim. Head back to a pub in Tom Price for lunch, before driving for the afternoon back to our station stay at Cheela Plains. After checking in and having time to freshen up, join the group for dinner at the accommodation.

Day 7: Exmouth

This morning after breakfast you’ll check out of your accommodation and begin driving back to Exmouth. After driving for approximately two and a half hours, you’ll stop at Nanutarra Roadhouse for lunch. Upon arriving in Exmouth in the afternoon check in to your accommodation for a chance to unwind. As some members of your group may be finishing their journey tomorrow, you may like to meet for a final dinner and a chance to reflect on the incredible adventures you’ve shared.

Day 8: Ningaloo Reef / Exmouth

A meeting will take place around midday today to welcome any new travellers joining your for the next leg of your journey, then head off to the Cape Range National Park where your leader will take you to the Vlamingh Head Lighthouse from where you can admire views of the famous Ningaloo Reef. Enjoy an evening at leisure in Exmouth.

Day 9: Coral Bay / Ningaloo Reef / Carnarvon

Get ready for an experience you won’t soon forget, first driving to picturesque Coral Bay, home to the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef. Join your group for a glass-bottom boat tour where you can see up to 250 species of coral and more than 500 species of colourful fish. Take to the waters with a snorkel. This afternoon, check out the Carnarvon Cactus Farm, have the opportunity to check out some of the delicious produce along the Gascoyne Food Trail and snap a photo at the Carnarvon Space and Technology Centre which was created to support NASA's Gemini, Apollo and Skylab programs. Stop at the Gascoyne Aboriginal Heritage and Cultural Centre and learn about the region’s culture and country from its First Nations custodians.

Day 10: Shark Bay / Monkey Mia

This morning, visit the Hamelin Pool Marine Nature Reserve and see marine stromatolites, or ‘living fossils’, which are widely regarded as the best of their kind in the world. Then enjoy a stop at beautiful Shell Beach, one of only two beaches in the world composed entirely of shells. Continue towards Denham where you can stroll along the Eagle Bluff boardwalk and enjoy the view from the lookout. This afternoon is yours to relax on the pristine shores of Monkey Mia until later on when you'll join an evening First Nations experience where you will learn about Gutharraguda (Shark Bay) from the Nhanda and Malgana people. Try your hand at playing the didgeridoo or traditional conch shell and taste some bush tucker prepared by your hosts over the open fire. Tonight you’ll stay at a beachfront resort overlooking Shark Bay.

Day 11: Shark Bay / Kalbarri National Park

After breakfast, watch Parks and Wildlife rangers feed the resident bottlenose dolphins at Monkey Mia and learn about these animals and other local marine life – this is a memory that is sure to stick with you long after your adventure is over! Then it’s time to hit the road once more and drive on to Kalbarri National Park, where you can appreciate the park’s diverse scenery including Nature’s Window, Z-Bend Gorge and the amazing Kalbarri Skywalk. You’ll spend tonight at a well-located resort within the park.

Day 12: Kalbarri National Park

Jump on a boat at the Kalbarri Marina this morning and set sail for the open ocean where you’ll learn about the local rock lobster industry and help pull up some lobster pots and re-bait them, ready to catch more delicious rock lobster before you return to the marina. The rest of the day in Kalbarri is yours to enjoy your way. Opt for a relaxing day at the beach or sign up for one of the many optional activities that are available in Kalbarri such as scenic flights, quad bike tours, canoe hire, or abseiling the Z-Bend at the national park.

Day 13: Northampton / Geraldton

Kick off the day with a visit to the photogenic Pink Lake at Hutt Lagoon before carrying on to historical Northampton. Join your leader for a walk around Northampton, one of the oldest towns in Western Australia, and admire dozens of historically significant buildings dating back to the 1800s. You’ll also visit a First Nations art gallery to see some beautiful pieces being made, and if you are lucky have the chance to meet the artists. Travel to Geraldton in the afternoon. Join your leader for a walk around town to learn about the region’s maritime history, see St Francis Xavier Cathedral, and perhaps spot some seals as you stroll along the waterfront at sunset.

Day 14: Pinnacles / Perth

This morning’s scenic journey along the Indian Ocean Drive will take you through Cervantes and to the Leaning Trees of Greenough. Along the way, you’ll also stop at the largest dunes in Western Australia and The Pinnacles at Nambung National Park where natural limestone pillars tower above the sand to create an otherworldly landscape. Arrive into Perth, the capital of Western Australia, at which point your adventure will come to an end.