Built on the dreams of fortune-seekers who flocked to the area following the discovery of gold in 1892, immerse yourself in the Goldfields rich history by undertaking the Golden Quest Discovery Trail for a true outback adventure. Try your luck gold prospecting, discover amazing salt lakes, ghost towns and quirky Outback pubs. See page 19
The Wheatbelt is home to the world-famous Wave Rock, as well as character pioneering townships, miles of golden fields, charming rural farmstays and spectacular wildflowers each spring. Boasting a great network of self drive trails and being a relatively short drive from Perth, it’s no wonder this is such a popular family holiday destination. See page 39
1 | Australia’s Golden Outback | australiasgoldenoutback.com
Making up 54 per cent of Western Australia, Australia’s Golden Outback offers a surprising diversity of outstanding holiday experiences. Visitors can immerse themselves in a fascinating and memorable mix of nature, history, adventure and discovery - all against the dramatic backdrops of blue skies, wide horizons or spectacular oceans. Welcome to road trip country 4 extraordinary regions to explore
With great self drive trails, rich red earth, sprawling cattle stations, amazing ‘carpets’ of wildflowers during springtime and Mount Augustus, twice the size of Uluru, you’ll be mesmerised by the wonders of this ancient Outback landscape, a perfect self drive holiday. See page 75
Experience some of Western Australia’s most pristine and untouched coastal national parks. Considered as one of Australia’s most biodiverse ‘hotspots’, it’s home to some of the country’s best beaches. Brilliant turquoise waters and snow-white beaches create a dazzling contrast to the red earth of the Outback. See page 91
australiasgoldenoutback.com | Australia’s Golden Outback | 2
GOLDEN OUTBACK region map
& THE COAST
Map intended as guide only, please purchase a detailed map if travelling by road.
Road Trip COUNTRY
Pathways to Wave Rock
Great South West Edge
Golden Quest Discovery Trail Road to Esperance Road to the Rock
Granite Woodlands Discovery Trail Outback Way Canning Stock Route
Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail Wildflower Country &
Wildflower Way Everlasting Trail Wheatbelt Way Leonora Loop Trails FORM Public Silo Trail
Nullarbor Links and Eyre Highway Gascoyne Murchison Outback Pathways: Kingsford Smith Mail Run Wool Wagon Pathway Miners Pathway
- - - - - - -
- - - -
So what are you WAITING FOR?
Let the ADVENTURE begin!
The natural landscape is an artistic display of outback plains, lakes, woodlands, rocky outcrops and beautiful beaches. Late winter and early spring bring dazzling displays of wildflowers, transforming the countryside into a picture postcard of colour and texture.
Accredited Visitor Centres. When you are travelling or planning a holiday the visitor centres in Australia’s
Golden Outback Region Map
Golden Outback will be more than happy to assist you with brochures, maps, booking accommodation and tours or providing local knowledge about the area’s attractions. Look out for the blue and yellow italic ‘i’ sign to find an Accredited Visitor Centre.
The gold rush country of the late 1800s has a deep sense of both history and legend woven into its towns and trails. Visitors can appreciate the evolution of modern mining that is so vital to the state. Many great pioneering innovations are still to be seen across the state as testimony to the forging of Western Australia. Vast farms and stations cover rolling hills and scrub regions, underlining a determined spirit in the peoples’ strong connection to their land. Australia’s Golden Outback is a region where driving is an adventure in itself, and the area offers a large network of gazetted pathways and 4WD tracks. The southern coast provides numerous pristine white beaches, aquamarine water and a variety of fascinating wildlife such as birds, dolphins, whales, seals and other marine life. Other regional holiday experiences include memorable farmstays less than two hours from Perth, as well as station stays on enormous, remote properties. It’s a region that loves to celebrate its rich diversity in many forms, and a full calendar of events, festivals and fairs means there is always something for every holidaymaker to enjoy. This comprehensive guide will assist you to plan your holiday to Australia’s Golden Outback and help ensure that you discover its magic for yourself.
Coastal Road Trips
Quality Tourism Accredited Business. This symbol indicates that a tourism business has met nationally-endorsed industry standards and is committed to
Goldfields Road Trips Wheatbelt Road Trips
12 13 16 18 18 19 39 75
Gascoyne Murchison Road Trips
providing quality products and services. When you book with a Quality Tourism Accredited Business, you’ll be supporting genuine tourism businesses and local communities Once you have finished using your Australia’s Golden Outback Holiday Planner, please pass it on to another traveller by leaving at your accommodation, camp ground or caravan park. Australia’s Golden Outback is proudly sponsored by Tourism Western Australia. Cover photo: Kylie Gee, Indigo Storm Photography (Milky Way over Inside Australia exhibit at Lake Ballard near Menzies)
The Canning Stock Route
The Outback Way
Kalgoorlie & the Goldfields
Esperance & the Coast
Tips for the Holidaymaker
For further information in planning your holiday contact: Western Australian Visitor Centre
55 William Street, corner Hay Street Perth WA 6000
Become a fan on Facebook Australia’s Golden Outback Follow us on Instagram @australiasgoldenoutback
5 | Australia’s Golden Outback | australiasgoldenoutback.com
GOLDEN OUTBACK must do’s 10
1 - Impressive Wave Rock
3 - Enjoy a Wheatbelt Weekend
2- Perfect beaches of Esperance & Fitzgerald Coast
4 - Kangaroos at Lucky Bay
6 - Lake Ballard’s Gormley Sculptures
7 - Australia’s largest rock - Mt Augustus
5 - Extraordinary Lake Hillier
9 - Walga rock art
10 - Kalgoorlie’s massive Superpit
8 - Experience a station stay
australiasgoldenoutback.com | Australia’s Golden Outback | 6
Stunning WILDFLOWERS OUTBACK
Wildflower season is one of Western Australia’s most fascinating and precious natural treasures. From July through to November the world’s largest range of wildflowers bloom.
Karijini National Park
Bullara Station Stay
Starting in the north of Australia’s Golden Outback you will see carpets of everlastings as far as the eye can see. Gradually as the weather warms further south, the Wheatbelt bursts into bloom and then finally you can experience the colour of the coastal national parks. A journey out to see the beautiful array of colours as well as the delicate and unusual features of many of the species, makes a wonderful day trip or extended holiday. Rains and sunshine greatly influence the timing of the wildflower season and before departure it is a good idea to telephone the local visitor centre in the area to check the variety of flowers that are blooming and their location. Although wildflowers can often be seen from the roadside, many interesting species are WILDFLOWER self drives
Mt.Augustus Tourist Park
Park CollierRange National
Wheatbelt Granites Loop
located off the road and are not difficult to find with information from the visitor centre.
On the following pages you will find a great range of self drive routes and the ones that burst into colour with wildflowers over spring have been highlighted with this small flower symbol.
Pink everlastings at Eaglestone Rock, near Nungarin #cjmaddock
7 | Australia’s Golden Outback | australiasgoldenoutback.com
Did you know... STARGAZING IN AUSTRALIA’S GOLDEN OUTBACK IS A WORLD-CLASS EXPERIENCE? Escape bright city lights and experience the wonder of WA's stunning Milky Way stars on beautiful country evenings. Discover peaceful, awe-inspiring and rare dark night skies where thousands of years of culture wrap you in billions of stars.
TRY ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY Capture the beauty of starry night landscapes at astrophotography hot spots. LEARN ABOUT CULTURE Discover Aboriginal Astronomy, what to see and where to look.
SEE THE STARS Use your telescopes and
binoculars at dedicated observing sites in welcoming country towns.
WHERE TO STAY Tips on accommodation and great things to do during the day.
PLAN YOUR STARGAZING ADVENTURE!
Visit the online Astrotourism Map astrotourismwa.com.au
Enjoy the freedom
Caravan Parks in Australia’s GoldenOutback offer a range of spectacular destinations and accommodation options, from camping sites for tents, powered sites for vans, to fully self-contained cabins . . . the choice is yours!
FOR YOUR NEAREST CARAVAN PARKVISIT caravanandcampingwa.com.au
EXPLORE THEWHEATBELT AND THE GOLDFIELDS OUTBACK OFWESTERN AUSTRALIA Get off the beaten track and
discover the wonderful stories of Western Australia’s Great Southern. Fully guided, our 4 and 9 day tours include accommodation, all meals and authentic experiences. We tour in small groups, departing from either Perth or Albany. *Conditions Apply. Start ExploringWith Us Call 0499 113 193 or visit greatsouthernoutback.com.au
Enjoy black night skies, perfect for stargazing
australiasgoldenoutback.com | Australia’s Golden Outback | 8
Take part in
The excitement of Kulin Bush Races
BE PART OF IT!!
Just a sample of some of the events: 6-7 Mar.............. Wagin Woolorama 12 Apr................ Kickstarters Gascoyne Dash, Upper Gascoyne 18 Apr................ Williams Gateway Expo 1 -9 May............ Chasing the Sun Nullarbor Links Golf Festival 30-31 May......... Leonora Golden Gift Weekend 30-31 May......... Goldfields Cyclassic Aug..................... Junction Races & Gymkhana, Gascoyne Junction Aug..................... Sandstone Art Show 26-27 Aug......... Dowerin GWN Field Days Sep..................... Wongan Hills Wildflower Festival 2-3 Sep.............. Newdegate Machinery Field Days 5-11 Sep............ Wattle Week Festival, Dalwallinu 7-19 Sep............ Ravensthorpe Wildflower Show & Spring Festival 18-20 Sep ........ Mount Magnet Astro Rocks Fest 20 Sep .............. Coolgardie Day
Sep-early Oct... Discover the Round, Kalgoorlie-Boulder 25-27 Sep ........ Meeka Outback Festival, Meekatharra 25-27 Sep ........ Wave Rock Weekender 25-28 Sep ..........QFest, Cue Oct..................... Menzies Rodeo and Ute Muster Oct..................... Laverfest & Laverton Cup 2-4 Oct ............ Kulin Bush Races 3-5 Oct.............. Landor Races Nov..................... Reynoldson Reserve Festival, Wongan Hills Before you go on holidays make sure you visit www.australiasgoldenoutback.com for a detailed and up to date event calendar highlighting some of the shows, festivals and sporting events throughout the entire region.
Many towns, communities and regions across Australia’s Golden Outback support a rich diversity of events, exhibitions, concerts, celebrations, shows and festivals. If you’re planning an outback holiday there may be several events that you can enjoy along the way. Here’s just some of the major events in Australia’s Golden Outback.
Your holiday starts now. Kick back, relax and discover regional WA on Transwa’s modern Prospector train. We travel between Perth and Kalgoorlie 18 times weekly, enjoy on-demand entertainment and buffet service whilst travelling in comfort. Transwa also operates luxury road coaches between Kalgoorlie and Esperance six times weekly, all services are air conditioned and fully accessible, with on board bathroom facilities and USB charging ports.
To book your next holiday, or to see where Transwa can take you call 1300 662 205 or visit transwa.wa.gov.au .
9 | Australia’s Golden Outback | australiasgoldenoutback.com
Are you up for
World’s Longest Golf Course, Australia
The World’s Longest Golf Course
at Penong and Nundroo. You venture past migrating whales and beautiful coastline at Nullarbor, to arrive at the beaches at Eucla. See “Skylab” at Balladonia and the working sheep station at Fraser Range. The indigenous art and dance of Ngadju people in Norseman features strongly in National and International appeal. Nickel mining and land sailing at Kambalda and then finally arriving at Australia’s gold capital, Kalgoorlie. Don’t miss out on being part of this unique golfing experience, by playing our annual tournament “ Chasing the Sun”. Watch the website for details of our next event in April every year.
This unique 18-hole par 72 golf course spans 1,365 kilometres with one hole in each participating town or roadhouse along the Eyre Highway from Kalgoorlie in Western Australia to Ceduna in South Australia. Each hole includes a synthetic green, tee and somewhat rugged outback-style natural terrain fairway. The course provides visitors with a quintessential Australian golfing experience that is unmatched anywhere in the world. Nullarbor Links takes you on a drive to Australia’s famous oyster beds at Ceduna, the wheat and sheep farming districts
Scorecards are available from Ceduna, Norseman or Kalgoorlie Goldfields Visitor Centres.
The Eyre Highway Operators Association is proudly supported by:
H O T E L
M O T E L
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Days 8-9: Hopetoun to Esperance 193km, 2.5 hrs Visit the Fitzgerald River N. Park and drive along its new scenic coastal roads. Travel east to Esperance, renowned for its amazing beaches. Stay two nights and make the 45 minute drive to Cape Le Grand N. Park with the kangaroos on Australia’s whitest beach at Lucky Bay. Day 10: Esperance to Wave Rock 382km, 4 hrs Farewell Esperance and head north via Wheatbelt country to Hyden and the amazing 2.4 billion year old Wave Rock. Day 11: Wave Rock to Perth 391km, 4.5 hrs Today head to Kulin via fun The Tin Horse Hwy. From here head to the historic town of York before heading into Perth. amazing coastline in the world. From the biodiversity hotspot that is the Fitzgerald River National Park near Hopetoun and Ravensthorpe to Lucky Bay, this is a trip you’ll never forget. The beaches of Esperance are famous for their white sand, turquoise ocean and sunbathing kangaroos! If you’re heading south, you’re in for a real treat! The road to Esperance weaves through the magical Wheatbelt and brings you to some of the most Coastal road trip
Welcome to ROAD TRIP COUNTRY!
The Great South West Edge 11 Days | Year-Round | 2WD Wildflowers Sep-Nov
Days 1-3: Perth to Margaret River, 277km, 3 hrs Leave Perth head to the coastal towns of Bunbury, Busselton and the world-famous Margaret River region. You’ll easily spend 3 days exploring wineries, amazing coastal scenery, beaches, ancient caves and quaint townships. Day 4: Margaret River to Pemberton 143km, 2 hrs Head to Pemberton, home of giant Karri forests and make time to visit the Warren National Park. Days 5-6: Pemberton to Albany 239km, 4 hrs Head south via Shannon, D’entrecasteaux and Walpole- Nornalup N. Parks, take the Tree Top Walk near Walpole and wander picturesque Denmark before arriving in historic Albany, staying 2 nights. Day 7: Albany to Hopetoun 352km, 4 hrs Depart Albany via stunning Porongurup and Stirling N. Parks to the coastal town of Hopetoun, located near Fitzgerald River N Park.
Drive Australia’s most Instagrammable road trip from Perth to Esperance, with an optional route back to Perth via iconic Wave Rock. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.thegreatsouthwestedge.com Highlights • Margaret River wineries • Southern forests • Tree Top Walk • ANZAC Centre • Whitest beaches in Australia • Fitzgerald River & Cape Le Grand National Park • Wave Rock
BUNBURY BUSSELTON MARGARET RIVER
Road to Esperance Escape 5 Days | Year-Round | 2WD | Wildflowers Sep-Nov Escape to the white beaches of Esperance and experience some of WA’s picturesque farmland and historic towns. Take the route via the Southern Wheatbelt on the way to Esperance, and come back to Perth via Wave Rock to keep things interesting! A full itinerary can be viewed at www.australiasgoldenoutback.com/escape Highlights • Wave Rock
Day 1: Perth to Lake Grace, 350km, 4 hrs Head south-east taking in scenic Wheatbelt country. You’ll take in sheep farming territory to Williams, Arthur River, Kukerin and Lake Grace. En route see Wagin’s Giant Ram and Museum Village and massive Lake Dumbleyung. Call in at Cambinata Yabbies near Kukerin. Stay overnight at Mary’s Cottages or at Lake Grace’s hotel, motel or caravan park. Day 2: Lake Grace to Esperance, 370km, 4 hrs Visit the AIM Hospital museum showcasing the work of the Royal Flying Doctor Service, or take in views of Lake Grace before heading to Lake King, the drive is stunning during spring. At Ravensthorpe view the PUBLIC Silo Trail, and take in the Fitzgerald River N.P, a biodiversity hotspot before arriving in Esperance, with plenty of accommodation options to choose from.
Days 3-4: Esperance Drive the scenic Great Ocean Drive and local beaches, venture out to Cape Le Grand or take a boat trip out to the Recherche Archipelago. If you’re feeling adventurous, climb Frenchman’s Peak for amazing views, or take a scenic flight over pink Lake Hillier on Middle Island. Day 5: Esperance to Wave Rock, then onto Perth 380km, 4 hours, then 350km, 4 hrs Depart Esperance and head towards Wave Rock. Explore this amazing billion year old rock formation and get your photo of yourself ‘surfing’ the wave. You’ll find aboriginal hand paintings at Mulka’s Cave. You can either head straight back to Perth after lunch or enjoy an overnight stay in Hyden.
• Tin Horse Highway • Lake Dumbleyung • Cambinata Yabby Farm • Lake Grace • Lucky Bay with kangaroos • Fitzgerald River National Park • Cape Le Grand National Park
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Road trips in the Goldfields!
HISTORIC TRAILS Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail 2 Days | Year-Round (Sep-Oct best for Wildflowers) | 2WD Hit the road to adventure and the wild west on a journey along the Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail from Perth to Kalgoorlie.
Travel back in time in the Goldfields of WA. From the Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail and Golden Quest Discovery Trail, to Australia’s Longest Shortcut, the Outback Way, a road trip to and through the Goldfields is filled with incredible stories, wide open skies and some proper outback charm.
Golden Quest Discovery Trail 3 Days | Apr-Oct (Aug-Sep best for Wildflowers) | 2WD & 4WD For a true Aussie outback adventure, hit the road and discover ghost towns and rugged scenery, meet the local characters and hear tales of fortunes made and lost. This route starts and ends in Kalgoorlie Boulder – you can get to Kalgoorlie by following the Golden Pipeline Trail A full itinerary can be viewed at www. goldenquesttrail.com Highlights • Coolgardie Exhibition Museum • Gold rush history and Gwalia ghost town • Super Pit • Kookynie and Niagara Dam • Outback pubs • Antony Gormley Sculptures Day 1: Coolgardie to Kookynie, 350km, 4 hrs Beginning in Coolgardie, visit gold rush museums before heading north east along the trail, passing through Ora Banda and Goongarrie to Menzies. Stop for lunch at local hotel then drive to Lake Ballard and the remarkable Antony Gormley sculptures that rise from a remote salt lake at Snake Hill. Continue north, stopping at Niagara Dam before arriving in Kookynie, where you could try your hand at fossicking for gold. You’ll find the local population of just 13, who you’re likely to meet at the Grand Hotel, have plenty of yarns to tell! Stay at the hotel or there’s also a caravan park. Day 2: Kookynie to Leonora, 67km, 1 hour For a real adventure immerse yourself in the outback and take unsealed road to Leonora. Today’s highlight is the ghost town of Gwalia. This rustic historic precinct oozes gold rush charm. Visit Gwalia Museum, site of historic Hoover House, once home to former American President, Herbert Hoover, who managed the local mine. Visitors can stay overnight in this restored residence, or continue to Leonora where there are hotels, motels and backpacker accommodation. Day 3: Leonora - Kalgoorlie-Boulder, 235km, 2.5 hrs Take the western trail through stunning outback landscapes and seasonal wildflowers to the mining hub of Kalgoorlie-Boulder. Be sure to stock up on fuel and food supplies before setting off into the Aussie outback. After a day on the road you’ve earned a cold drink on the wide verandah of one of the many hotels in Kalgoorlie- Boulder. Gormley Sculptures COOLGARDIE KALGOORLIE-BOULDER MENZIES KOOKYNIE GWALIA LAVERTON LEONORA
Eyre Highway & Nullarbor LinkS 2 Days | Year-Round (Apr-Oct best) | 2WD This is one of Australia’s great road adventures! Crossing the country from the east to west, through the vast arid interior and along the Great Australian Bight, the Nullarbor Plain is the ultimate outback adventure. A full itinerary can be viewed at nullarbormap.com.au and www.nullarborlinks.com Highlights • Eucla Telegraph Station ruins • Eyre Bird Observatory • Nullarbor Links, the world’s longest golf course • Balladonia Skylab museum • Fraser Range Station • Woodlands Discovery Centre
A full itinerary can be viewed at www. goldenpipeline.com.au Highlights • Springtime wildflowers • No. 1 and no. 3 Pump stations
• Cunderdin Museum • Cummins Theatre • Mount Charlotte
Day 1: Perth to Merredin, 260km, 3 hrs From Mundaring follow the route of the historic water pipeline, built more than 100 years ago – and still the longest fresh water pipeline on earth. Enjoy scenic farmscapes and nature walks, and explore historic water pump stations and lookouts during the journey to Merredin. Stay overnight at a motel or hotel in this friendly farming community where you’ll also find seasonal wildflowers and warm hospitality. Day 2: Merredin to Kalgoorlie,340km, 3.5 hrs Head east to the Goldfields, stopping at Southern Cross where gold was first discovered in the late 1800s. On the way to Coolgardie and Kalgoorlie- Boulder, you’ll see gold rush ruins, interpretive displays and springtime wildflowers. Spend the night or a few days in Kalgoorlie, the hub of WA’s gold mining industry with plenty of historic tales, magnificent architecture and lively nightlife.
Day 1: Eucla to Balladonia, 500km, 5.5 hrs The Nullarbor Plain is the world’s biggest single piece of limestone at 200,000 km². Make your way west across this amazing feat of nature – driving from Eucla near the border between SA and WA along Eyre Highway. At Eucla take 3km detour to the beach and travel the scenic lower plain via Mundrabilla to Madura Roadhouse and its lookout over surrounding tablelands. Perhaps drive to Eyre Bird Observatory (4WD only), home to more than 240 species of birds, many rare and endangered. Stop for lunch and play a hole at Cocklebiddy, famous for its cave systems. You’ll find a roadhouse, golf hole and fuel stop at Caiguna before hitting the longest straight stretch of road in the world – all 146.6km of it! Its common name is the 90 Mile Straight. After this drive you’ve earned a restful night at the Balladonia Roadhouse. Day 2: Balladonia to Kalgoorlie, 380km, 4 hrs Play a hole, check out the museum, home to the remnants of Skylab, a former space station that crashed to earth near Balladonia in 1979. The journey continues through low shrub and make sure you play the ‘Sheep’s Back’ at Fraser Range before arriving in Norseman – the first major town on the WA side of the Nullarbor Plain and the end of the Eyre Highway. Stop for picnic lunch at Beacon Hill Lookout, providing views of town, surrounding countryside and salt lakes. Drive either north to Kalgoorlie and continue to Perth, or head south to Esperance and return to Perth via the Great South West Edge (see page 11)
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Road trips in the Wheatbelt!
The Wheatbelt of WA is known for its endless paddocks, yellow canola fields and springtime wildflowers, but you’ll also find super-sized art, wacky roadside sculptures, salt lakes, giant rock formations and so much more.
Northern Wheatbelt Wonders 3 Days | Year-Round | Wildflowers Aug-Sep | 2WD Meander north of Perth and experience a perfect northern Wheatbelt wildflower and nature getaway. This road trip takes you through the gorgeous country towns of Moora, Dalwallinu and New Norcia – in spring this is wildflower heaven! A full itinerary can be viewed at www.australiasgoldenoutback.com/ northernwonder Highlights • Springtime wildflowers • Bindoon Bakery
Pioneers’ Pathway 2 Days | Year-Round | Wildflowers Sep-Oct | 2WD Follow the dream of early farming and gold mining pioneers who journeyed east into the Wheatbelt in search of fortunes from life on the land. This trip ends in Merredin, but you can continue on to the Goldfields, or loop back to Perth on Day 3. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.australiasgoldenoutback.com/pioneerspath Highlights • Pioneering history • Toodyay colonial architecture • Slater Homestead • Wyalkatchem CBH Museum • Mangowine Homestead
Pathways to Wave Rock 3 Days | Year-Round | Wildflowers Aug-Sep | 2WD Visit one of Australia’s best known natural icons Wave Rock, on this three-day trip exploring the changing landscape and charming farming communities. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.roetourism.com.au Highlights • Pioneering history • Corrigin Dog Cemetery • Tressie’s Museum • Wave Rock • Walkers Winery Lake Grace • Cambinata Yabbies
• Wongan Hills and walk trails • Dalwallinu Discovery Centre • Carnaby Cockatoo Trail, Moora
• Tin Horse Hwy • Kokerbin Rock • York
• Western Wildflower Farm • New Norcia Monastery
• Billyacatting Hill • Dowerin Museum • Merredin PUBLIC Silos
WESTERN WILDFLOWER FARM
Day 1: Perth to Dowerin, 160km, 2 hrs Leave Perth and head to the hills and the pretty town of Toodyay, with scenic valley views. Stop for lunch at a local pub or have a riverside picnic. Continue north-east to Goomalling and visit the historic Slater Homestead, crossing the Avon River tributary at Mortlock River – a well-known wildflower hotspot in spring. The Tin Dog sculpture welcomes you to Dowerin. Day 2: Dowerin to Merredin, 155km, 2 hrs The drive to Merredin winds through farmland, bush reserves and splendid springtime flowers. Enjoy a lunch at Wyalkatchem and take in the CBH museum before driving to Nungarin, Trayning and onto Merredin. View the biggest grain storage facility in the country (it’s also the site of the PUBLIC Silo Trails), or take in a show at the Cummins Theatre. Day 3: return to Perth via the Golden Pipeline Heritage Trail, or continue east to the Goldfields for gold rush history.
Day 1: Perth to Hyden (Wave Rock, 340km, 4 hrs From Perth head east through farmland to Corrigin (famous for its quirky Dog Cemetery!). At Karlgarin visit Tressie’s Museum display of olden day memorabilia and enjoy lunch in Hyden before short drive to Wave Rock, a 15m high, 110m long granite cliff over 2.7 years old before visiting Hippo’s Yawn and Mulka’s Cave with its Aboriginal art. Day 2: Hyden to Bruce Rock, 305km, 3.5 hrs Drive to Lake Grace with its winery, salt lakes and museum. Perhaps travel to Kukerin and visit Cambinata Yabbies before heading to Kulin, you can’t miss the Tin Horse Hwy welcoming visitors to town. Travel to Kondinin and take in 360 o views from Yeerakine Rock, continue to Bruce Rock. Visit Shackleton, Australia’s smallest bank. The 45 minute drive west to Kokerbin Rock offers spectacular views. Day 3: Bruce Rock to Perth, 250km, 2.5 hrs Take a leisurely drive through farm pastures to historic town of York. This place oozes history – enjoy town walk before driving back to Perth.
Day 1: Perth to Wongan Hills, 183km, 2.5 hrs Leave Perth and sample the fresh produce in Chittering, and visit the scrumptious Bindoon Bakery. Explore Rica Erickson and Old Plains Rd reserves on the way to Calingiri and take in Lake Ninan. Wongan Hills has many reserves with countless wildflower species, as well as walk trails, museum and other great attractions. Day 2: Wongan Hills to Moora, 165km, 2 hrs Head north to Dalwallinu where Wreath Leschenaultia blooms during spring. Visit Dalwallinu Discovery Centre for information on attractions and wildflowers in season. Head south to Moora where the town clock welcome you. Day 3 : Moora to Perth, 171km, 2.5 hrs Take a walk along Carnaby Cockatoo Interpretive Walk Trail where you’ll bound to spot one of these majestic birds. Call in at the Western Wildflower Farm (20km north), and take a tour to see/touch/ smell amazing wildflowers. Drive back to Perth via New Norcia, Australia’s own monastic town.
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Wildflower Country / Wildflower Way 3 Days | Year-Round (Aug-Nov best for Wildflowers) | 2WD Wildflower Country runs from Moora to Dalwallinu, Mullewa to Green Head, finishing in Geraldton. Below is an itinerary showing the Wildflower Way route from Dalwallinu to Geraldton. For your return to Perth, follow the new Midlands Route (in green). Both trails are sign-posted and feature interpretive panels.
Winery, Woodlands and Wheatbelt Trail 3 Days | Year-Round (Sep-Oct best for Wildflowers) | 2WD
Wheatbelt Way 4 Days | Year-Round (Aug-Sep best for Wildflowers) | 2WD
Drive through picturesque farmland to Wheatbelt wineries, take superb nature walks and view local nocturnal wildlife and granite outcrops. This self drive is the perfect escape from the everyday. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.australiasgoldenoutback.com/winerytrail Highlights • Tanglefoot Winery • Downderry Wines • Pingelly • Albert Facey Homestead • Foxes Lair and Barna Mia Animal Sanctuary • Lake Toolibin • Wagin Historical Village • Williams Woodshed
The Wheatbelt Way is a fascinating experience starting in Dowerin and spanning 800km with 24 interpretive sites. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.wheatbeltway.com.au Highlights • Springtime wildflowers
A full itinerary can be viewed at www.wildflowercountry.com.au Highlights • Springtime wildflowers • New Norcia Monastery • Western Wildflower Farm • Wildflower Walk Trails • Western Wildflower Farm • Wreath flowers and Everlastings • Pioneering and Aboriginal history
• Pioneering history • Rusty the Tin Dog • Wyalkatchem CBH Museum • Koorda Drive-in Theatre • 24 interpretive sites to explore • Beringbooding and Elachbutting Rock • Mangowine Homestead
ERADU NATURE RESERVE
ERANGY SPRINGS ROAD
COALSEAM CONSERVATION PARK
Day 1: Perth to Wyalkatchem, 214km, 3 hrs Depart Perth and head to Dowerin and join the Wheatbelt Way trail. Make sure you pat Rusty the tin dog, the first site on this route. Head to Minnivale and Naaning Well, then Wyalkatchem to see Korrelocking Reserve and Wyalkatchem Well. Day 2: Wyalkatchem - Beringbooding, 252km, 3.5hrs Head north through the towns of Koorda, Bencubbin and Beacon, inspecting sites that include Koorda Native Flora Reserve, Pergande Sheep Yards and Marshall and Billiburning Rock. From Beacon head due-east past other fascinating rock formations such as Beringbooding and Elachbutting. Day 3: Beringbooding - Mukinbudin, 210km, 3 hrs Today head south to historic Westonia and visit Sandford Rocks and Boodalin Soak. Head to Mukinbudin visiting Weira Gnamma Hole and Wattoning historical site. Day 4: Mukinbudin - Perth, 323km, 4 hrs Final day on the Wheatbelt Way. Visit site 20, Mangowine Homestead, a beautiful historic building built in 1876 and filled with antiques and memorabilia. Travel on to see other historic gnamma holes and wells and the Yelbeni Townsite Museum before travelling back to Dowerin and overnighting or heading the 167km back to Perth.
Day 1-3: Perth to Narrogin, via Wandering, Pingelly and Wickepin, 267km, 3 hrs Head down Albany Hwy and turn-off, exploring the wineries around Wandering. Take a leisurely lunch at Tanglefoot then across to the historical town of Pingelly. Perhaps drive to Boyagin Rock or Tutanning Reserve, one of WA’s significant conservation areas (not suitable for vans). Drive 57km to Wickepin and explore Albert Facey’s Homestead and wander the Yarling Brook heritage walk before driving to Harrismith with its wonderful springtime wildflowers. Travel 68km via Taarblin Nature Reserve to Narrogin. This evening be sure to head out to Barna Mia for a nocturnal tour, bookings essential. Day 2: Narrogin to Wagin, 49km, ½ hour Explore Narrogin’s heritage streetscapes, explore Railway Dam or Gnarojin Park then take a walk Foxes Lair. Perhaps take in Lake Toolibin home to the endangered freckled duck and visit Downderry Wines or climb Yilliminning or Birdwhistle Rock before driving some 50km south to the merino centre of Wagin, with its Giant Ram welcoming you to town. Day 3: Wagin to Perth, via Arthur River & Williams. 236km, 2.5 hrs Visit the Wagin Historical Village for an up close view of the town’s pioneering past then drive 30km to Arthur River with its unique ‘Rarebits on Burrowes’ shop. In springtime see wildflowers at Boronia Reserve. Drive north to Williams with its Heritage Trail walk and visit the Williams Woolshed, having afternoon tea at The Shed Café. Explore the history of the wool industry in The Shearer’s Yarn. Depart Williams and visit the Williams Nature Reserve before drive back to Perth.
Day 1: Perth to Dalwallinu, 251km, 3 hrs Depart Perth via the Swan Valley to New Norcia, a quaint Monastery town, and stop at the Bindoon Bakery for morning tea. After sightseeing around New Norcia, travel through open vistas to the delightful town of Dalwallinu, home of wheat and wattle. Call into the Dalwallinu Discovery Centre for wildflower updates. Day 2: Dalwallinu to Morawa, 149km, 2 hrs Head north and inspect nearly half of the 21 interpretive sites along the Wildflower Way. Visit locations such as Wubin, Buntine Rock, Latham and Caron Dam before calling into Perenjori, famous for its wreath flower. Stay overnight or perhaps continue to the town of Morawa, brimming with wildflowers during spring. Day 3: Morawa to Geraldton, 197km, 2.5 hrs Leave Morawa and inspect some 11 interpretive sites before your arrival in Geraldton. Along the way stop in the town of Mullewa and call into the local Visitor Centre for updates. Also take the 600m walk through the legacy of Monsignor John Hawes. This afternoon, drive the 100km to Geraldton stopping at the remaining 4 interpretative sites. Return to Perth option Return to Perth via the Midlands Route. (see map above in green).
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Granite Woodlands & Discovery Trail
Day 1: Hyden - The Breakaways Campsite, 137km, 2-3 hours Explore Wave Rock before hitting the dirt road towards Norseman – much of the trail is gravel, but it is suitable for 2WD and caravans. Take in the uninterrupted views and wildflowers as you pass across the 4WD only Holland Track and watch the landscape change to mallee woodland and eucalypts. Explore rocky outcrops and cliffs of The Breakaways. Roll out your swag at the campground here for a night spent under an amazing star-filled sky.
Day 2: The Breakaways Campsite - Norseman, 165km, 2-3 hours You’ll see eucalypts, hakea and flame grevillea as you set off east towards Mermaid Rock, a great spot for a picnic, rest break, or a leg stretch along the walk trail. Take in the vista at Lake Johnson and Lake Viewpoint. Continue to Disappointment Rock and walk the 2 kilometre trail around and over the outcrop. Rolling rocky hills and abandoned mine shafts dot the landscape to Lake Cowan. The Woodlands Walk in Norseman completes the trail.
2 Days | Apr-Oct (Sep-Oct for Wildflowers) | 2WD Linking Wave Rock to Norseman, explore pristine landscape – home to one of the world’s greatest untouched temperate woodlands, with 16 designated stopping places. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.australiasgoldenoutback.com/ granitediscovery Highlights • Wave Rock • Springtime wildflowers • Explore one of the world’s last temperate forests • Norseman • Dundas Rocks
FORM PUBLIC SILO Trail 5 Days | Year-Round (Aug-Nov best for Wildflowers) | 2WD
Day 1: Perth - Northam - Merredin, 260km, 3 hrs Follow the Golden Pipeline Heritage trail en route to Northam where international artists Hense and Phlegm transformed eight CBH Group silos. Then it’s on to Merredin where you can view one of WA’s most accomplished street artists, Kyle Hughes-Odgers and his colourful creation. Enjoy seasonal wildflowers in the spring. Day 2: Merredin - Hyden - Newdegate - Ravensthorpe, 386km, 4 hrs Continue the celebration of the natural and industrial assets via Wave Rock, an art form in itself, before heading to Newdegate where muralist Brenton See has depicted the area’s local wildlife. Continue south to Ravensthorpe to be greeted by the towering mural that wraps around the whole site and view Fremantle artist Amok Island’s artwork, Six Stages of Banksia baxteri. Day 3: Ravensthorpe - Hopetoun - Pingrup, 302km, 3 hrs Drive 30 mins to Hopetoun and spend time exploring the Fitzgerald River National Park,
before heading back inland via Ravensthorpe to view the next silo along the trail at the small farming town of Pingrup, where you can view Miami based artist Evoca1’s 25m high mural depicting the renowned Pingrup Races and agricultural heritage. Day 4: Pingrup - Albany, 200km, 2 hrs Head to Albany to view Brooklyn-based street art duo Yok & Sheryo’s magnificent ruby seadragon. While you’re in town, explore York Street and its laneways to see over 20 wall based and electrical box murals, dotted throughout town (call in at visitor centre for a map. Day 5: Albany - Katanning - Perth, 452km, 5 hrs Depart Albany and drive to the Wheatbelt town of Katanning to view a number of electrical transformer boxes and walls in the town’s centre with colourful murals by some of Western Australia’s prominent artists as part of the PUBLIC Silo Trail.
Explore the Wheatbelt following the PUBLIC Silo Trail, an ambitious project between FORM and CBH Group that brought internationally renowned artists to regional Western Australia to transform a string of massive grain silos into works of art, this permanent, open-air ‘gallery’ links rural and coastal towns across WA’s southern regions, spreading a visible legacy across silos, walls and electrical boxes from Northam to Albany. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.publicsilotrail.com Highlights • Bilya Koort Boodja Centre
• The Cummins Theatre • Hainsworth Museum • The Premier Mill Hotel
• Fitzgerald River National Park • The National Anzac Centre
PUBLIC Silo Trail Discover WA’s epic wheatbelt road trip
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MOUNT AUGUSTUS TOURIST PARK
Road trips in the Gascoyne Murchison!
KINGSFORD SMITHMAIL RUN
EPIC AND RUGGED
The Gascoyne Murchison region is rugged, unspoilt and truly remote. This is the perfect place for a 4WD adventure, or an epic trip north. You can explore the largest monocline in Australia, Mount Augustus, find historic ghost towns, see carpets of wildflowers and see ancient Aboriginal art. Kingsford Smith Mail Run 3 Days | Apr-Oct (wildflowers late July - Sep) | 4WD For a slice of Aussie outback history, jump into a 4WD and trace the original overland mail run used in the 1920s from Carnarvon to Meekatharra – and celebrate the pioneering spirit of Australia’s most famous pilot, Charles Kingsford Smith. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.outbackpathways.com Highlights • Carnarvon local produce • Kennedy Range National Park • Mount Augustus National Park • Mount Gould • Meeka Rangelands Discovery Walk Trail • Buttah Windee Barramundi Farm & Art Gallery • Wiluna Tjukurba Aboriginal Art Gallery Day 1: Carnarvon - Mount Augustus, 497km, 6 hrs From the historic port town of Carnarvon head east through pastoral land to Gascoyne Junction, where massive sheep stations dot the landscape. Enjoy lunch at the Gascoyne Junction pub before setting off for Mount Augustus, a massive monocline twice the size of Uluru. Arrive at Mount Augustus in time to watch the sun sink over the granite formation, thought to be 1,750 million years old. Don’t miss a photo at sunset - Emu Hill Lookout is one of the best spots. Overnight accommodation at Mt Augustus Tourist Park. Day 2: Mount Augustus - Mt Gould, 100km, 1.5hrs This morning spend some time exploring the rock formations, caves and Aboriginal art scattered throughout the area. Wildflowers, birds and wildlife, swimming, fishing and picnic spots make this a true outback adventure destination. Depart Mount Augustus, and watch it slowly disappear from the landscape as you head south for Gascoyne River at Landor. Follow the current mail route via Mount Gould and the Mount Gould Lock Up. Find a spot along the way and pitch your tent for a night spent under a brilliant night sky. Day 3: Mount Gould to Meekatharra, 160km, 2 hrs Journey south through the vast, timeless landscape, to the gold mining town of Meekatharra. Spend time learning more about the town’s mining past, as well as its indigenous heritage, on the Meeka Rangelands Discovery Walk Trail, and check out the Buttah Windee Barramundi Farm & Art Gallery near town (phone ahead). Rocky outcrops, native wildlife and wildflowers bring the town to life. WILUNA EXTENSION While in Meeka, why not drive the 182km to Wiluna, start of Canning Stock Route and Gunbarrel Hwy plus take its historic walk trail and view the Tjukurba Aboriginal Art Gallery and Canning-Gunbarrel Discovery Centre.
Miners Pathway 4 Days | Apr-Oct (wildflowers late July - Sep) 2WD & 4WD Capture the prospecting spirit on this trail through the Murchison’s gold rush days. In the late 1800s Mount Magnet, Cue, Meekatharra and Sandstone rocketed to the forefront of WA’s gold boom! A full itinerary can be viewed at www.outbackpathways.com Highlights • Springtime wildflowers • Mt Magnet Mining & Pastoral Museum • Walga Rock • Historic gold rush towns • London Bridge • Paynes Find Gold Battery • Station Stays Day 1: Paynes Find to Meekatharra, 340km, 4 hrs Enjoy the springtime wildflowers before setting off from Paynes Find towards Mt Magnet. Remnants of Mt Magnet’s gold mining history are evident in discarded mine shafts, museum and heritage walk trails – but you’ll find the mining industry is still alive and well. From here, head to Cue, famous for its stunning colonial architecture and Walga Rock. Day 2: Meekatharra to Sandstone, 221km, 2.5 hrs Hit the dirt road to Sandstone, keeping watch for wildlife including kangaroos and emus. Natural rock formations contrast with the rust stained sandstone which gives the town its name. Stop at London Bridge, an ancient rock formation that was once wide enough to allow a horse and sulky to cross. Day 3: Sandstone to Yalgoo, 280km, 3 hrs The journey weaves through the vast open landscape, crossing back to Mount Magnet to the town of Yalgoo. Emus, wedge-tailed eagles and kangaroos are plentiful around the town. Just south of Yalgoo is Joker’s Tunnel, carved through solid rock by early prospectors - and a great spot to see wildflowers. Day 4: Yalgoo to Paynes Find, 155km, 2 hrs Head south east across a dirt road to your starting point of Paynes Find. Make time to visit the Gold Battery and Museum, which showcases the region’s mining, pastoral and sandalwood industries.
93 | The Gascoyne-Murchison Wool Wagon Pathway 3 Days | Apr-Oct (wildflowers late July - Sep) | 4WD Offering the best of the Aussie outback and amazing marine adventures – this trail travels through some of WA’s legendary sheep and wool country before heading to the coast. Expect star-filled night skies, vivid sunsets and lively country characters. A full itinerary can be viewed at www.outbackpathways.com Highlights • Springtime wildflowers • Wooleen Station & Station Stays Unsealed Road Sealed Road PERTH WOOLWAGON PATHWAY KINGSFORD SMITHMAILRUN THEMINERS PATHWAY Day 1: Geraldton to Murchison Settlement, 355km, 4 hrs Leave the bustling port city of Geraldton behind as you head east through the town of Pindar. Hit the red dirt road and journey through a timeless landscape to Murchison Settlement. This is the ‘real’ Australian landscape – open space, historic homesteads and plenty of wildlife. Day 2: Murchison Settlement to Gascoyne Junction, 300km, 3 hrs Head north, stopping at the natural spring of Bilung Pool. Seashell fossils south of Gascoyne Junction point to the epic history of the natural landscape. Nestled on the banks of the Gascoyne River, the town is a centre for local sheep and wheat stations. Day 3: Gascoyne Junction to Exmouth, 611km, 7 hrs Take in the beauty of the Kennedy Ranges, which run north from Gascoyne Junction and boast springs, spectacular cliffs and canyons. Continue north, deviating towards the coast and the town of Exmouth. Here, coastal breezes and white beaches contrast against the rugged red earth. Explore stunning Ningaloo Reef, and spend a few days here relaxing on the beach - or from late April to June go swimming with whale sharks. • Murchison Museum • Gascoyne Junction • Kennedy Range National Park • Exmouth and Ningaloo Reef
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