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Renowned for ruggedly stunning coastal cliffs and rust red river gorges, Kalbarri offers a wealth of activities and attractions. Kalbarri is a picturesque seaside town located 590 Kms north of Perth, midway along Western Australia’s Coral Coast.
The town itself is located on the estuary of the Murchison River, which is an ideal playground for all types of water sports such as swimming, kayaking, fishing or snorkelling in the aqua blue waters. The Kalbarri National Park which covers an area of 186,000 hectares and encircles the town, can be explored by car, on foot or on a canoe or kayak tour through the deep river gorges.
Kalbarri Coastal Cliffs
16 Kms south of Kalbarri is the beginning of the spectacular coastal cliffs which change from ochre to a deep rust red colour contrasting against the deep blue aquamarine of the pounding ocean. The sites are well sign-posted and offer walking trails and pathways to viewing platforms and lookouts over the coastline.
There is Natural Bridge, Island Rock, Shellhouse Grandstand, Eagle Gorge, Mushroom Rock and Rainbow Valley Walk Trail, Red Bluff and Pot Alley. All spectacular in their own right and worth the effort of the short drive and walk into.
Now depending on what sort of water activity you are interested in, there is an aquatic location around Kalbarri that will suit your needs. There is the river foreshore which is the ideal location to spend the day and swim or fish in the safe, calm water or take a stroll on the sandy beach.
Blue Holes is a Fish Habitat Protection Area and as such, the ideal place for snorkellers to enjoy the coral gardens and over 70 species of fish in the clear aqua waters. Chinaman’s Beach in the Murchison River is also a great spot for a safe swim as it offers protection from the ocean swells and currents.
Jakes Bay is the place where the big waves break on a point break and is popular with surfers of all levels of ability. Red Bluff Beach is a beautiful white sandy beach ideal for swimming or a leisurely beach stroll.
Many of the beaches have natural elevation which provides a great grandstand for spectators, perfect for taking photos or watching dolphins riding the waves. We witnessed a pod of about fifty dolphins catching waves early one morning and it was a magical sight.
If you are looking for adventure, then Kalbarri will not disappoint. There are many tours available including:
Kalbarri National Park
The spectacular scenery of Kalbarri National Park is the result of millions of years of geological formation. As the Murchison River carves it way to the sea, magnificent red and white banded gorges have been cut by the flow. These gorges meander 80 Km’s through the 186,000 hectare park.
A visit to this park of marvels is approximately 40 Km’s east of Kalbarri and is accessible by all types of vehicles even though some of the roads are unsealed.
Our first stop was to the Z-Bend Gorge, which is considered to offer the most breathtaking views of the park, is reached by a 1.4 Km return walk trail from the car park to a lookout. The gorge plunges 150m down to the river below where red river gums create a striking contrast against the earthy sandstone cliffs.
A short 11 Km drive away is one of the most iconic natural attractions – Nature’s Window. This rock has a window which frames the river perfectly and is top on the list of photo opportunities.
For the more adventurous and experienced walkers, starting and ending at Nature’s Window is the 8 Km loop track which takes you through moderate to challenging terrain and spectacular scenery. The trail takes you along the rim of the gorge and deep down into the river gorge onto the sandy white banks of the river fringed with lovely red river gums.
There are overnight hikes available throughout the National Park which you can arrange with the Department of Parks and Wildlife Office in Kalbarri.
With a slogan like “Kalbarri! You’ll love it”! This does not do the place justice at all. It should say “Kalbarri! You’ll absolutely adore it”! The kaleidoscope of colours of her stunning landscapes were magnificent.
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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