Meet a few of the locals at Exmouth and Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia, from friendly dolphins to majestic manta rays. Of course we couldn’t forget about one of the ocean’s greatest inhabitants, the mighty humpback whale, and its largest fish, the whale shark. Nearby you’ll be amazed by the sights of the Cape Range National Park, a desert red playground.
This underwater paradise on the north western coast of Australia is a popular spot for all kinds of visitors, from dolphins, manta rays, turtles and humpback whales, to the largest fish in the ocean - the gentle whale shark. And just a few hours away, in contrast to the bright blues of Ningaloo, you'll find the rugged red gorges and canyons of Cape Range National ParkOpens external site in a new window.
Here are some of the locals you can view and swim with along the Coral CoastOpens external site in a new window:
There's a whole wealth of new and exciting experiences waiting to be explored, don't forget to add these to the list:
- Get closer to the world-class coral reef and join a glass-bottom boat tourOpens external site in a new window or experience it under your own steam on a sea kayakOpens external site in a new window
- Take a cruise along Yardie Creek, or join a four wheel drive safari tourOpens external site in a new window of the Cape Range National Park and keep a lookout for the rare black footed rock wallaby
- Swim with humpback whales and see these gentle giants up close. Read more and find an operatorOpens external site in a new window now
- See the gentle whale sharkOpens external site in a new window between March and July
- Visit Exmouth's Jurabi Turtle CentreOpens external site in a new window to find out about the vital role Ningaloo plays in protecting these endangered creatures.
Spectacular and unforgettable, the northwest coast of Western Australia is one of the most isolated places on earth, and all the more worth visiting because of its remoteness.
Exmouth is the gateway to the crystal clear waters of the Ningaloo Reef and the incredible diversity of animals that call the reef home.
As you'd expect of a small country town visitors come here to access the natural wonders beyond. There is a golf club and for some land based action and you'll find an array of dining and shopping services available in the main town centre, with many restaurants serving the famous local seafood alfresco. Visit Turquoise Bay, Yardie Creek and Cape Range National Park only a short drive from the town.
Ningaloo Reef is one of the world’s most pristine and isolated coral reefs. It’s also home to some of Australia’s most spectacular luxury eco-resorts.
Accessible from shore, this extraordinary natural phenomenon is the largest fringing reef in the world and one of the world’s most bio-diverse, reaching nearly 20 kilometres out to sea and covering a massive 5,000 square kilometres of ocean. There’s plenty to explore with multiple beaches and bays containing over 500 species of fish and 200 varieties of coral you can see through glass bottomed boats or on snorkel tours. On an outer reef or dive tour you’ll meet some of the reef’s larger inhabitants, including graceful manta rays and turtles. Venture into the deep blue between mid March and late July and you can come face-to-fin with the gentle whale shark. It’s one of the best places in the world to swim with one of the largest fish in the sea.
To get to the reef you’ll need to book a tour or car hire. Plus if you’re planning to explore the region beyond Exmouth it’s important to be prepared and let someone know where you’re going and when you plan to return.
Coral Bay is a small settlement that lies protected from the Indian ocean by the Ningaloo reef.
In contrast to other locations the coral starts right at the water's edge. The fish and the coral are very accessible to all including small children. Fish and coral can be experienced either snorkelling or on one of the Coral viewing boats. It is about 50 km to the North of the tropic of Capricorn, some 120 km south of Exmouth in Western Australia. The weather is mild, without the humidity that is often associated with tropical climates.
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Over the course of a year, the temperature typically varies from 12°C to 37°C and is rarely below 8°C or above 42°C. The warm season lasts from late November to late March with an average daily temperature above 35°C. The cool season lasts from late May to late August with an average daily temperature below 26°C.
From the airport
Learmonth Airport is 36 kilometres from Exmouth. Exmouth Bus ChartersOpens external site in a new window provide a shuttle bus service from the airport to your accommodation in Exmouth for a per person fee. If you will be travelling to Coral Bay, transfers between Learmonth Airport and Coral Bay can be arranged by contacting Coral Bay Airport TransfersOpens external site in a new window.
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