Kimberley Coast - Broome to Darwin

11 Days from AU$8,690 per person

Are you ready to explore Australia's oldest, most remote and spectacular coast? Our Kimberley Coast voyages take you deep into the heart of some of the wildest and most unique natural wonders on Earth. With an incredible 2,500 offshore islands, the world’s largest humpback whale nurseries, powerful Wandjina and Gwion Gwion rock paintings, various seabird rookeries and the famous Horizontal Waterfalls, the Kimberley Coast continues to s­­­urprise explorers and take their sense of adventure to a new level!

Expedition Highlights

  • Excursions to admire graceful Gwion Gwion figures and informative Wandjina paintings
  • Spotlight for saltwater crocodiles and massive manta rays in Prince Regent Nature Reserve
  • Trek through untrodden bush and climb to hidden waterholes for a sneaky dip
  • Raise your adrenaline on a Zodiac cruise through the Horizontal Waterfalls

Map & Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive Broome

Enjoy Broome’s beaches, pearling industry and history before boarding Coral Expeditions I for a late afternoon departure.

Day 2 – Lacepede Islands

By around noon we hope to reach the remote Lacepede Islands Nature Reserve and, weather permitting, we will explore the area in our excursion boat. The islands are an important nesting site for green turtles, and home to large colonies of Lesser Frigate Birds and Brown Boobies. These islands were named by the French explorer Baudin in 1801 to commemorate his naturalist compatriot, Count Lacepede. They have often been visited by Macassan fishing boats and the white sands of the islands shine like beacons in the electric blue sea. The waters around are alive with fish and the air is swimming with frigate birds and boobies.

Day 3 – Horizontal Waterfalls

Overnight we hope to cruise across the mouth of King Sound and into the famous Buccaneer Archipelago where iron rich stumps of the Wyndham and McLarty Ranges meet the sea, creating a spectacular maze of more than 800 red islands. With our skilled captain and shallow draft vessel we cruise the narrow channels between the islands, through whirlpools and strong currents which are driven by the massive 12metre tides. We plan to visit Talbot Bay’s spectacular Horizontal Waterfalls, a phenomenon caused by a combination of geology and tides. With favourable tides, we may be able to pass right through the falls in our Zodiacs and if time permits, we hope to explore some of the enticing narrow waterways around the fringes of Talbot Bay.

Day 4 – Montgomery Reef

We plan to explore Montgomery Reef - home to a startling array of corals, clams and sponges, and part of an Aboriginal reserve. The reef is an extraordinary and bizarre area of several hundred square kilometres, which appears from the sea at low tide. The rapid daily ritual of immersion under water means that the flanks of the reef are like waterfalls as the tide drops. Green turtles often play or swim in the narrow corridors of coral around the edge of the reef.

Day 5 – Camden Sounds

Kuri Bay – site of the Southern Hemisphere’s largest pearl farm. We will learn about the pearl industry along the way, but for security reasons visitors are not permitted to land. As we cruise past the failed sheep farming settlement of Camden Harbour, we gain a deeper understanding of the harsh conditions faced in the 1860’s by the pioneering inhabitants of this beautiful, remote area. We may well launch the excursion boat for a night-time crocodile cruise.

Day 6 – Prince Regent River

Today’s activities will be dictated by the tide. We will take the excursion boat to explore the magnificent Prince Regent River, which follows a 100km long fracture in King Leopold Sandstone. We hope to stop at King Cascade, a magnificent waterfall that tumbles over terraced rock formations, and maybe disembark at Camp Creek for a long walk and a climb through rocky overhangs, waterfalls and pandanus palms to a beautiful freshwater swimming spot.

Day 7 – Prince Regent Nature Reserve

The coastal fringe of Prince Regent River Nature Reserve is home to crocodiles, half of the region’s mammal and bird species, and some 500 plant species. We track southward, following in the wake of Lieutenant Phillip Parker King and come ashore at Careening Bay. King and his crew spent time here repairing their ship after her rough trot along the Kimberley coast (Mermaid was actually damaged off Port Bowen, Far North Queensland). The inscription “HMC Mermaid 1820” is still clearly visible on a large boab tree.

Day 8 – Bigge Island

We plan to head offshore to Bigge Island to see the famous Wandjina (Kaiara – Sea Wandjina) spirit paintings whose origins remain shrouded in mystery and controversy. Time and weather permitting, we may well walk to the far side of the island to view graceful Bradshaw (Gwion Gwion) paintings. Bigge Island is a haunting place of great silence, rich with wildlife. It is a wonderful place to get a true sense of the antiquity of our land. We have only explored a tiny fragment of the island to date so the convoluted bays and rocky headlands are enticing. Turning South in the evening we head for the northern Collier Bay area.

Day 9 – King George Falls

Heading for the mouth of the King George River is without a doubt one of the Kimberley’s most amazing attractions. Enormous cliff-faces tower above us as we make our way up the tranquil waters of huge gorges, the haunt of Brahminy kites, egrets and kingfishers. The famous 90-metre plunge of King George Falls is a highlight and favourable tides may enhance our opportunity to explore the river gorge.

Day 10 – Joseph Bonaparte Gulf

Time pending we may pull in at Anson Bay and explore the lower reaches of the Daly River. Alternatively, we may have tracked further north where there are opportunities for wonderful wildlife encounters in places like Tapa Bay. Then in the warm glow of the Top End’s ubiquitous smoke-stained sunsets, we’ll enjoy a drink or two!

The final leg of our expedition takes us across Joseph Bonaparte Gulf. Weather and time permitting, we explore the serpentine creek system below the Cox Peninsula.

Day 11 – Disembark Darwin

We will dock in Darwin this morning and disembark at approximately 8.15 am. Complimentary transfers will take passengers to their hotel or Darwin airport. It is time to say farewell to newfound friends – all of us having shared the delights of a remote and beautiful coast where the stumps of an old land meet the sea.

Inclusions

  • On-board accommodation during voyage including daily cabin service
  • All meals, snacks, tea and coffee during voyage
  • All shore excursions and Zodiac cruises
  • Educational lectures and guiding services from expedition team
  • Access to our onboard doctor and basic medical services
  • Reusable stainless steel water bottle
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • A printed photo book produced with photos from your voyage
  • Port surcharges, permits and landing fees

Exclusions

  • International or domestic flights, unless specified
  • Transfers not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Airport arrival or departure taxes
  • Passport, visa, reciprocity and vaccination charges
  • Travel insurance or emergency evacuation charges
  • Hotels and meals not included in itinerary
  • Optional excursions not included in the itinerary
  • Optional activity surcharges
  • All items of a personal nature including but not limited to: alcoholic beverages and soft drinks, laundry services, personal clothing, medical expenses, gratuities, Wi-Fi, email or phone charges
I could not speak more highly of Chris and Alasdair. Their knowledge and experience was wonderful and I don't think other tours could match them. A wonderful experience for us all.
Tim L., Australia - Kimberley Coast, 2016
The trip was outstanding and I would have happily turned around and done it all again.
Ken M., Western Australia - Kimberley Coast, 2016

Dates & Rates

Showing: All 2019

Prices quoted are per person and in Australian dollars, based on twin share. For solo traveller pricing, please contact us. No single travel fees apply if you are willing to share your cabin (twin cabins only). Fuel surcharge may apply in the event of significant fuel price increases. No refund for unused services. Please contact us to determine cabin availability.

Extension Tours

Extend your holiday with these optional tours. See all Extension Tours in Kimberley Coast

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