WA road trip
Travelling along the west coast of Australia is a road trip-enthusiast’s dream: long drives will be rewarded by incredible scenery and untouched beaches that rival some of the best in the world. From Perth to Broome, the coast is known as the Coral Coast, and en route you will pass some of these amazing sites during a trip that usually takes about 14 days to complete:
- Perth – the starting point for most west coast road trips and the WA international travel hub.
- Kalbarri – where you can spot whales, go surfing, or just lounge on the beach for an afternoon.
- Monkey Mia – watch the dolphins performing their famous daily feeding ritual.
- Denham – the most westerly town in Australia and home to Shark Bay, a World Heritage Site.
- Coral Bay – from where you can visit Ningaloo and snorkel around a reef that rivals the east coast’s world famous Great Barrier Reef.
- Exmouth – another Ningaloo Reef base and a town which also acts as the gateway to the Cape Range National Park.
- Eight Mile Beach – take in the dazzling sunsets from this isolated strip of coast.
- Broome – the final stop, from where you can fly back to Perth, or onwards to your next destination.
This road trip affords an amazing travel experience, but due to the long stretches of road with few signs of life between each of the destinations, there are things that should be taken into account before starting off.
Firstly, a 4×4 is usually the best option for self-drive trips up the west coast. Check out car reviews and information on Motoring.com.au before you rent or buy your car to make sure it’s properly equipped for the route you want to take. Ensure the car has been serviced recently before you head out, as many points along the west coast are very isolated.
Make sure your insurance covers you for all eventualities before you depart on your trip, whether you’re hiring a car or driving your own.
When driving, watch out for wildlife – a kangaroo bounding into the road can cause great damage to a vehicle, you, and of course the kangaroo itself! Drive at a sensible speed. The long roads are often very tiring, so make sure you take regular breaks and switch drivers every few hours.
Finally, carry drinking water, extra fuel, tools and a spare tyre with you and re-stock whenever you pass through a town. If you break down in the middle of nowhere, you’ll need supplies to last until the next vehicle passes. It’s a good idea to let your family or friends know where you’re heading, your ETA for each stop, and to touch base with them whenever you reach your next destination.