Kimberley Travel Guide Blog

The "Kimberley Travel Blog" page always shows the latest additions and updates I made to this Kimberley Travel Guide, new pages that have been added by readers, and important news from the region. I also publish some updates I made to my guide e-book Destination Kimberley (information that you will not find on the website, but only in the e-book).

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Gibb River Road in a Holden Captiva

Hi Birgit, I very wisely purchased your Destination Kimberley guide and constantly referred to it. We're just back from 3 weeks touring around the Kimberleys

Continue reading "Gibb River Road in a Holden Captiva"

8 days Broome to Darwin. Are we mad?

Love your site! Thank you for the terrific information. My husband and I have quite limited time, so we will be travelling via the Great Northern Highway.

Continue reading "8 days Broome to Darwin. Are we mad?"

Jayco Fantastic on the Gibb

We have traveled from the East Coast of Australia from Innisfail straight across to the West Coast doing the Savannah Way and the Gibb River Road, to Broome!

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14 days Broome - Kununurra - Broome via Great Northern Highway and Gibb River Road

Day 1 Broome, rent car and camping equipment Day 2 Broome - Mary Pool Rest Area via Fitzroy Crossing and Geikie Gorge Day 3 Rest Area - Bungle Bungles

Continue reading "14 days Broome - Kununurra - Broome via Great Northern Highway and Gibb River Road"

Darwin – Gibb River Road – Darwin in 22 days

I have enjoyed comprehensively reading both your Destination Kimberley and Top End guides and as a result feel confident I have devised a good itinerary

Continue reading "Darwin – Gibb River Road – Darwin in 22 days"

Packrafting the Fitzroy

The 2011 wet season was the biggest ever recorded in the Kimberley. The town of Fitzroy Crossing became an island as the Fitzroy River rose over 13 metres.

Continue reading "Packrafting the Fitzroy"

Mitchell Falls: When it did not have a name

I was lucky enough to visit the Mitchell Falls on a number of times, first being in 1975 when working on the prawn trawlers out of Darwin. We would fish

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Update on Kalumburu Road and Mitchell Plateau

SWEK (the Shire of Wyndham-East Kimberley) has received initial funding of $600,000 from Main Roads' emergency funding program to enable the shire to start repairs on the Kalumburu Road.

As of June 23 the Kalumburu Road up to the Mitchell Plateau turn off as well as the Mitchell Plateau access track are open for high clearance 4WD vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes. Yes, that means you can access the Mitchell Falls. But please realise that the road isn't exactly in mint condition. Use extreme caution.

The rest of the road from the turn off to Theda Station and Kalumburu is still under water and unlikely to open before late September.

Blockade at James Price Point

You may be too far away to help blocking the Woodside bulldozers, but no matter where you are, you can help protect the Kimberley from industrialisation. (PDF)

(Also see this newsletter for more info.)

Charnley River Station now open

Due to the big wet season Charnley River Station only just opened. They have sustained some severe damage (like pretty much everyone up here) and therefore had to suspend their farmstay accommodation for the year. There are also no meals at the homestead.

This year only the campground is open.

It's been a late decision, but it's taken that long for things to dry up enough to assess all the damage. What a season...

The Lhasa Noumea Walkabout

Reader Alain has sent me a very detailed article about his family's four month trip across the Kimberley, northern Australia and Asia, which goes with

Continue reading "The Lhasa Noumea Walkabout"

Mitchell Plateau/Kalumburu Road

A quick update to yesterday's newsletter (issue #35). It looks like I painted too bleak a picture and the Kalumburu Road will be fixed as far as the turn off to the Mitchell Plateau. A senior Heliwork pilot tells me they are hoping to get people in by the end of June.

I certainly hope so, too. As he also pointed out, the Mitchell Falls are of course spectacular after this wet season!

However, the rest of the Kalumburu Road might still remain closed for the whole 2011 season.

Kimberley and Top End in April

We have visited the Kimberley area in April this year (2011). We left Darwin just after the cyclone watch was lifted and went down to Kakadu, driving in

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Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #34. Kimberley roads and parks updates and other mixed items.

The last newsletter had more information on road and park opening dates. Finally it is possible to make some rough predictions.

Edit: Purnululu National Park open on May 11, two days later than planned. Geikie Gorge boat tours will commence on May 16 as anticipated, but all other West Kimberley national parks remain closed until further notice. The Gibb River Road should be open by the end of the month.

(You can subscribe to my free newsletter in the top right corner of every page on my website.)

Continue reading "Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #34. Kimberley roads and parks updates and other mixed items."

27 Days Darwin to Darwin

Dear Birgit, I bought your guide and the itinerary suggestions. So I would like to submit my itinerary to receive comments. We will arrive in Darwin on

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A new Kimberley Mini Guide for Dog Owners

Ooops, I didn't forget to send out newsletter issue #32. Just forgot to put it on this page!

Well, it went out a few weeks ago, and if you have a dog and want to take it to travel the Kimberley, then you'll want to read it!

Continue reading "A new Kimberley Mini Guide for Dog Owners"

Is this the end of the wet season? Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #33

The latest Kimberley Guide newsletter issue went out two days ago. Among other topics, it looks at the current flood and road conditions.

(As for the question whether we've seen the end of the rains and floods: erm, a new tropical cyclone (TC) just formed north of the Mitchell Plateau/Kalumburu region. It's muggy and cloudy in Kununurra, and it's been pouring down over Kalumburu for a few days already...

TC Errol is currently forecast to move away from the coast to the north-west, so with a bit of luck only the area around the Mitchell Plateau gets another bad soaking.

Continue reading "Is this the end of the wet season? Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #33"

"Over The Top" - With Old Bentleys from Perth to Darwin

Dear B, as I had told you, we were on a terrific Tour, OVER THE TOP, with old Bentleys from Perth to Darwin - a slightly different way of traveling than

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Videos of our Kimberley/Gibb Adventure in a Rental Troopy

Andy had already shared his great, very detailed Kimberley and Gibb River Road trip report here. Below is the video version. Thanks, Andy, for allowing

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28 days Darwin to Darwin via GRR

Hi Birgit, having spent 2010 road testing your Top End guide as far as Katherine - I can't wait to test the Kimberley guide! I have really appreciated

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Charnley River Station changed hands

As of February 2011 Charnley River Station has a new owner.
Nobody knows yet what exactly that means for the future, what changes it may bring. (The owner himself does not know yet.)

The new owner is connected with the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (the organisation that also owns and manages Mornington Wildlife Sanctuary and Mornington Wilderness Camp), and the AWC will manage a part of the property as a wildlife sanctuary.

But most of Charnley River will continue to operate as a cattle station, and the tourism business will continue as you know it. (Campground will be open, rondavels will be available, the bunkhouse may not be as it has sustained some wet season damage).

At least that is the current plan. Nothing is definite yet.

Watch the newsletter for more updates.
(You can subscribe to my free newsletter in the top right corner of every page on my website.)

New Caravan Park near the Bungles

I have just updated Destination Kimberley with the details for the new caravan park near the Bungles.

The new park is set to open on May 1, 2011.

Below is the information I do have at the moment. Please take it with a grain of salt, as I would be surprised if there would not be some changes to the details, once it is actually operating. Many things you can only refine as you go...

In any way, I do expect this new business to be something of a game changer, as it is in such a prime location.

Bungle Bungle Caravan Park is at the turn off to Purnululu National Park on Mabel Downs Station, 750m from the highway. It's owned and run by the station owners. The road to the caravan park should be accessible for 2WD.
Accommodation with dinner and breakfast in luxury safari tents ($295 pp), or powered and unpowered camping ($45/$35, respectively, for a site for 2). Bush restaurant open for breakfast and dinner.
Good news for caravan owners: caravan storage is available at $15 per night.
Good news for dog owners: dogs are ok in the campground (not a the safari tents!) if kept on a leash and not causing any disturbance to other campers.

Bungle Bungle Expeditions is part of the same operation and offers day tours to Bungles ($395 pp), 4WD station tours and helicopter flights over the station and Bungles.

Continue reading "New Caravan Park near the Bungles"

Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #31

The latest Kimberley Guide newsletter issue went out two days ago. It addresses some reader questions, some updates, and it announces the new free download for all Destination Kimberley customers. If you have difficulty putting your Kimberley trip itinerary together, this is for you!

(You can subscribe to my free newsletter in the top right corner of every page on my website.)

Continue reading "Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #31"

28 Days Darwin to Adelaide via Kimberleys/Uluru with Water Loving Kids

G'day Birgit, I have recently purchased both your Top End and Kimberleys books. They are brilliant and just what I was needing to plan our upcoming trip!

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Ord Muster and Kimberley Moon Experience Dates and Programs

The Ord Valley Events Board just announced the program for this year's Ord Valley Muster and the Kimberley Moon Experience.

The tradition of the Muster began in Kununurra in 2001 when it was nothing more than a one night dinner event for local businesses. It has since grown into two weeks of community based events showcasing the region. Most popular is the Kimberley Moon Experience, an open air festival headlined by a big act.

Kununurra celebrates its 50th birthday this year (in fact, the official birthday is today, Feb 10), so the organisers are trying to make the event extra special. There is not just one big act for the Moon Experience, but several: Jimmy Barnes, Vanessa Amorosi, Bob Evans and the Pigram Brothers & Alex Lloyd.

I assume the fireworks will also be a bit bigger than usual :-).

The Muster will be on from May 12-22, and the open air Moon Experience on May 14. Follow the link below to get all the details of the program, where to buy tickets, etc.

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Booking Accommodation in the Kimberley - A Cautionary Tale

B's note: This cautionary tale about the scarcity of accommodation along the Gibb River Road was sent to me via email. It is only of concern to people

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Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #30

After over a week without internet access it's taken me a while to catch up and get this one out. Your January issue of the Kimberley Guide newsletter is available now. Find out what's been happening and what will happen in the near future.

(You can subscribe to my free newsletter in the top right corner of every page on my website.)

Continue reading "Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #30"

Bull Bars Under Threat

Our government in its infinite wisdom is considering to adopt European regulations which may lead to the banning of bull bars on all motor vehicles. (And winches and certain driving lights as well.) Say what? Ban bull bars in Australia because they are not needed in Europe?

In response to this bright idea the ARB together with the Australian 4WD Industry Council has launched a national on-line public survey to collect information from the public about their use of bull bars and nudge bars.

Please complete this short survey to help our government understand how we use bull bars and that Australia is not Europe.

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Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #29

And update from Mt. Hart, a new swimming hole at Litchfield, three unusual trip reports and upcoming info about travelling with dogs.

(You can subscribe to my free newsletter in the top right corner of every page on my website.)

Continue reading "Kimberley Guide Newsletter Issue #29"

Tyre pressures on the Gibb River Road

Your story about people and their tyre problems reminded us when we went to the Gibb River Road / Mitchell Falls some years ago. We met two Polish mates

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24 days Darwin to Broome via Gibb River Road, including Dampier Peninsular

We are a couple of NZdrs - 76 and 69 - hiring a 4wd camper in July to drive from Darwin to Perth (42 days). Last year we went to Katherine and Kakadu

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Two Dutchies in a BIG 4WDrive (!!!) on the Gibb River Road

In July/August 2010 my sister and me (58 and 65) rented a 4WD campervan in Broome to do the Gibb River Road. I must confess that I was veeeeeeeery anxious

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Newsletter Special Issue - Disturbing News From Mt. Hart

At this point in time it looks as if Mt. Hart may not open for business next season, except, maybe, the campground. However, that's only a small part of the news. The disturbing and hard to believe aspect is WHY Mt. Hart may not open...

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Single with child/ren - Yes, you can do it!

Hi, I’m Lisa. Traveling northern WA and the NT has always been a dream, but I never thought I could do it on my own. However, after waiting 10 years to

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The Gibb - Adventure of a Lifetime

In August 2008 my wife had a chat with a Ranger called Brendan in Kata Tjuta, having just driven the wonderful Mereenie Loop from Alice Springs. He said

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The Kimberley in 1968

It is now 42 years since I drove along the mostly dirt road from Derby to Mt House cattle station, and on to Wyndham. Along the way - the journey took

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A Kimberley experience worth relating

We thought our Kimberley experience worth relating. Three couples & two ladies (most of us senior citizens, three of the drivers 70 plus) in mid June

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Kimberley Trip, September 2010

We are now camped in a glorious little spot between Broome and Port Hedland – Cape Keraudren, and I promised my family that I would thank you profusely,

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Gibb River Road is a must do!!

We left Darwin on 29th July and had to be in Cable Beach on 12th August. We travelled to the Bungle Bungle then to Wyndham and via the back road across

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Two Kimberley Videos

Five of us travelled in 3 vehicles starting in Broome and doing a circular route up the highway to Kununurra and then down the Gibb River Road back to

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The Gibb River Road: A short trip - A fantastic experience

We have recently travelled along the Gibb from Broome to Kununurra and on to Darwin, as part of a larger trip through Australia. This website was so valuable

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Bungles in a Day

I personally don't think you could do the Bungle Bungles in a day. It takes quite a few hours just to get into the park from the entrance. You could do

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Bungle Bungles from Warmun Turkey Creek - 1 day with 3 kids

I have read in detail all the information and conversations about the Bungle Bungles and the time it takes to get there. I understand the time issues!

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Cockburn Ranges alternate view (Karunjie Road)

We have just completed a whirlwind snapshot tour of Kakadu, some of Kimberleys and the WA coast in Aug/Sep 2010. 10, 400km from Melbourne including The

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Taking food containers into WA (quarantine question)

We are coming to the Kimberleys from Townsville in North Queensland and that considering we have to go through the NT/WA border we were wondering about

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Our Muddy Adventure Down the Gibb May 2010

We decided last year in 2009 that we had to do a driving trip up north to explore our beautiful country, now or we'd probably never get around to it! We

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King Edward River Campsites renamed and no longer free

Excerpts from a reader email from Juli 16. Thanks Keryn, Chris, Kerrin and Greg:

"We do have a couple of updates for you as a result of two fab weeks on the Gibb River Road. We spent two nights at King Edward River campsite now known as Munura. They have changed the road in and renamed the campsites. Camp 1 is Wulumara and 2 is Warninmarri. It is now 2.7 km from the river crossing to the campsite turnoff and 1 km in to the camps. It is $7 per head per night on an honour system. However, there is a caretaker present."

...and...

"Mt Barnett store doesn't have a siesta anymore, nor does Imintji. The public phone at Mt Barnett has been out of action for 8 months and still awaiting telstra to visit and fix it. You can for a donation to the RFDS or community make a call using the store phone."

Regarding the non existent siestas I would be careful outside peak season.

Magic Cape Leveque

We were at Cape Leveque only 3 weeks ago. What a magical piece of Australia. I cannot fault it! Koolajamin is professionally run and very very clean.

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Cape Leveque - I wish I stayed there more

I had seen pictures of Cape Leveque surfing the net and decided I must see it in my trip to Kimberley. We spent there 2 nights, 1 and a half day. We had

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