Holidays in Western Australia provide many opportunities for adventure, travel and excitement.
From Broome in the rugged Kimberly region to the north of the state, vast rugged mountains stretch inland to the north and to the east. While to the south, the most amazing white sandy beaches run unbroken for hundreds of kilometres, including at places such as Eighty Mile Beach, the very name of which invokes a vision of the scale and beauty of the state.
Further south, the dramatically named Shark Bay is one of the largest nature reserves in the world, with thousands of species of fish and other marine creatures inhabiting this natural paradise. Inland from the coast, the scenery in the Pilbara region consists of vast empty plains, rust red iron mountains and clear blue skies which stretch unbroken from horizon to horizon.
At night, the sky becomes a vast, jewelled, black velvet roof, with only the light of your campfire intruding on the heavenly vista, and only the sound of native night life to disturb the quiet.
Each night, billions of stars provide a display which is unlike any found elsewhere on earth. Then, as night passes and as a magical new golden dawn breaks over this ancient and rugged landscape, you will enjoy amazing experiences, the memories of which will remain with you for a lifetime.
Off the coast, to the south west of Shark Bay, is located the amazing Ningaloo Reef, which is a World Heritage listed marine reserve. The reef runs from north to south and is over 200 kilometres in length. It is the closest coral reef to the Australian coast, and in some places you can swim from the beach out to the reef. Coral Bay is an amazing remote tourist destination located toward the southern end of Ningaloo Reef.
Heading south along the coast on your Western Australian holiday, the first town encountered is Kalbarri which is a popular destination for West Australian holiday makers. While further south on the coast is the city of Geraldton, which with a population of approximately 40,000 is booming. Massive economic growth in the region is driven primarily by overseas demand for the state's iron ore.
New developments including harbours are in the process of being planned and built in the area. Plus, there are rail lines which reach from the port far into the interior of the state, and which transport millions of tones of rust red iron ore each year, from mines in the Hammersley Ranges to waiting ore carriers.
Along the coast, and running south along the coast from Geralton a string of small coastal fishing towns and holiday hamlets such as Dongara and Port Dennison, Leeman, Jurien Bay, Cervantes and Lancelin are located. These are all great paces for a spot of fishing and for water activities such as surfing. While, inland from these small towns lies the vast northern wheat belt region, with small rural towns such as Dalwallinu, Morawa and Wongan Hills dotting the landscape.
Further south in the Wheatbelt region, and ranging even further south, larger towns such as York, Beverley, Merredin and Northam, etc. dot the landscape. To the east of these are towns such as Southern Cross, and further to the east are the gold fields and gold mining towns such as Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie.
To the south of the Wheatbelt region, other towns such as Balingup, Boddington, Mount Barker and Bridgetown are to be found and provide excellent holiday opportunities. With each town and district being unique and offering special experiences to visitors.
Most overseas visitors to Western Australia are struck by the vast size,open spaces and raw beauty of the state, and by the relatively low population numbers, especially in the north and the east, although also in the south.
The populations in different towns and cities continue to grow over time, and in many areas the populations are far higher now than they were just thirty years ago, when we first arrived in the state.
The roads between all major towns and cities in Western Australia, even in the very low population areas to the north of the state, are of a very high standard, and it is rare these days to need to get off the bitumen to reach anywhere other than farms, mine sites, outstations and very remote towns.
In the Pilbara, and everywhere along the west coast south from Geralton, there are growing volumes of road traffic. Unless you are suitably experienced and knowledgeable, and know where you are going and know what you are doing, it is unwise to venture off the bitumen roads and head along gravel roads or out into the native bush in the north or the east of the state, where there are often no roads or towns for hundreds of kilometres.
Away from the major highways and towns, the outback is amazingly beautiful, although it can also be a harsh and potentially punishing environment for those who are unaware of the risks involved, and who are not adequately prepared to deal with nature in the raw.
For example, in the far north of the state, crocodiles are a very real risk when swimming or camping or when walking near either freshwater or saltwater rivers or lakes, or even the sea. You should not treat such risks lightly, because it only takes a few seconds for things to go terribly wrong, and when it comes to a fight between you and a croc, or between a child and a croc, the croc is going to be the most likely winner.
Also, it is important to understand that in some remote areas of the north and the east of the state, emergency services may either be non-existent, may be difficult to contact, and may be hours or even days away from reaching you. So, at all times be certain to take appropriate precautions and avoid taking unnecessary risks.
The majority of West Australians live in the fertile and environmentally diverse south west of the state although they often holiday all over the state.
The coastal plain located between Yanchep to the north and Mandurah to the south of Perth, and east to the escarpment is where most people live and work.
This area includes the Perth metropolitan region, including the City of Perth, the City of Fremantle and various other municipalities, plus substantial new developments in areas such as Rockingham.
Perth is a very pleasant city to visit and in which to live. All heavy industry is located to the south of the city and away from most populated areas, plus new cosmopolitan entertainment areas have evolved, especially along the coastal strip.
Here you will find many pleasant locations with cafes and shopping precincts in locations such as Cottesloe and Joondalup. Plus, the beaches are outstanding. Pleasant, high value residential areas have developed all along the costal strip, with some formerly industrial ocean side areas now containing the most spectacular beachside residential developments which provide excellent holiday accommodation and are conveniently located close to Perth.
Increasingly, many people are moving further south and north of Perth, especially retirees who are seeking either a sea change or a tree change, in order to escape the ever expanding and increasingly populated city.
The south west of the state is a spectacular holiday destination, with scenery ranging from the most amazing beachside towns and hamlets, to growing cities such as Bunbury. Plus, there are farmland areas, mountains and deep forests of huge trees that reach for the sky.
On the south coast, picturesque hamlets and small towns such as Denmark and Walpole are surrounded by forests and farmland, or overlook magic rivers, inlets and the majestic ocean. Increasingly, these locations have Internet access, and within Western Australia, even the most remote hamlets, farms and outstations are due to be connected to high speed broadband over the next few years.
The city of Albany is situated on the south coast, on what must be one of the most spectacular natural harbours in the world, with two mountains located within the city and providing magnificent views over the harbour, the city and the nearby countryside for as far as the eye can see.
Albany is a brilliant holiday destination. It is still quaint, although I suspect that in the coming years the city and the surrounding towns, hamlets and countryside will experience substantial growth, as the growing numbers of retirees and others from Perth, the eastern states, and overseas increasingly discover this amazing and unique part of the world.
Further to the east along the south coast, apart from the small towns of Esperance and Ravensthorpe the country is almost devoid of population. This is in spite of it being the most hospitable of areas. It appears to be so empty not because no one wants to live there, but simply because the population of Western Australia is so small and the distances are so great, that few people have yet discovered the magic of the south eastern area of the state.
Explore this website to learn more about many of the different places in Western Australia which are of special interest to visitors, and to locals who want to learn more about holiday options in the state.
Also, learn about places to stay and things to do, plus where to eat, and where to go to enjoy a great coffee, or to sample wines and other beverages. The website at http://www.Western-Australia.com, covers many more towns and locations. Plus, includes information about annual events such as country town folk music festivals, agricultural shows and other grass roots traditional community events which take place in and around the state.
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