Is the most northern region of the state of Western Australia covering 423,516 square kilometres. The population is an estimated 36,000 residents (2018) with only three towns exceeding 2,000 people: Broome (12,766), Derby (3,261) and Kununurra (4,573) with around 40% of the population of Aboriginal descent.
Most of the region consists of open savanna with eucalyptus trees sprouting in the wetter areas with the gorges to the north sheltering monsoon forests. The southern areas have red sandy soils belonging to the Tanami and Great Sandy deserts whilst the Ord Valley and Fitzroy River offer more fertile grasslands. Kimberley’s northern coastline faces the Timor Sea and its west coast the Indian Ocean, both shores producing stunning white beaches against a backdrop of striking red cliffs.
The world-famous Gibb River Road leads you through the depths of the Kimberley wilderness from Derby to Kununurra. This 660km 4WD track is a true outback adventure that includes multiple river crossings, breath-taking roadside views with rare fauna and flora making this drive one of the top road trips in Australia.
Kimberley boasts eight very impressive National Parks: Purnululu meaning “sandstone” is world famous for its orange and black striped domes that tower up to 300m tall. These remote World Heritage listed formations are known as the “Bungle Bungles”. Geike Gorge is known for its easy accessibility, the gorge used to form part of an ancient Barrier Reef and now the Fitzroy River flows through the 30m tall gorge reaching depths of 16m during floods and bleaching the bottoms of the cliff walls.
Windjana Gorge is the best place in the world to see freshwater crocodiles in their natural habitat. This 3.5km long gorge with its walls reaching up to 30m high offer permanent waterfalls and fossilized remains encased in the rock walls. Tunnel Creek is only a few kilometres from Windjana, it is a 750m tunnel through the Napier Range-the ancient limestone remains of an ancient reef system. This cave system is the oldest in Western Australia and is peppered with permanent waterholes, use you torch as you wade through these, they will probably house some fresh water crocodiles in there!
Mitchell River National Park is the most difficult to access but it is most definitely worth the drive with its natural infinity pools, cascading waterfalls, caves, rock art, staggering cliff faces and breathtaking views across the Mitchell Plateau. El Questro Wilderness Park has a working cattle station, stunning waterfalls, a huge variety of hikes and bushwalks, thermal springs and waterholes as well as lush tropical forests and majestic gorges.
Cape Leveque is the northernmost tip of the Kimberley region, the remote stunning white beaches and staggering red cliffs house wildlife like shorebirds and turtles that can be spotted nesting in the exposed rock.
Kimberley travel itinerary and things to do:
- Float down the stunning creeks and rapids at Bell Gorge
- Sooth yourself in the warm waters of Zebedee Springs
- Try some cliff jumping into the depths of Manning Gorge
- Swim under the 65m waterfall at Emma Gorge
- Take a scenic flight over the Prince Regent River and Mitchell Falls
- Watch the sunset over the Cockburn Range from Home Valley Station
- Take a boat cruise across the beautiful waters of Lake Argyle
- Visit the gold rush town of Halls Creek
- Take a majestic sunset camel ride across Cable beach
- Time your visit right a watch the spectacular “staircase to the moon” at Broome
- Hunt down the hundreds of bat colonies hidden across Central Kimberley
Kimberley Tours can be tailored according to your needs
Do you want a Perth to Broome Overland tour? Or maybe a Broome to Perth Overland tour with the possibility of swimming with whale sharks at Ningaloo Reef? With so many beautiful places to choose from, we know exploring Kimberley can be confusing for some, which is why we offer various tour options for travelling convenience. For example, one of our most popular tours is The Great Kimberley Overland with 13 days to thoroughly explore the region from the lily-filled waters of Galvan’s Gorge to the pearl farms of Cygnet Bay this tour is packed full of the highlights across the Great Kimberley!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Kimberley expensive to visit?
Due to its wild and secluded nature; food, drinks and fuel can be pricier than more built-up areas of Australia, we recommend booking a tour to have all your expenses included.
How long do you need to see Kimberley?
At many destinations within Kimberley camping is your only option for accommodation, to ensure your camp is set up before sun down and that enough time is taken to safely arrive at some of the more remote destinations we recommend at least 12 days to enjoy Kimberley.
What is the weather in Kimberley?
Kimberley has a tropical monsoon climate. Cyclones are common in its short Wet Season (Nov-April) and the more north you go the more prone the roads are to flooding. The Dry Season (May – Oct) offers daytime temperature of between 20 and 30oC whilst the nights can range from freezing to pleasantly warm.
When is the best time to visit?
The most popular time to visit is in the Dry Season which can cause considerable crowds at some attractions, a visit during the beginning of the season (May) will ensure that roads previously washed away have dried up and tourists are only just arriving.
Do you need more ideas? Check our Ningaloo Reef Tours.