In the Wheatbelt region of Western Australia, 200km northwest of Perth and 17km south of the small coastal fishing village of Cervantes, Nambung National Park expands across an area of 192.7 sq kms and is famous for its striking archaeological beauty and surreal landscapes.
The park is bordered to the west by the Indian Ocean, to the north by the Southern Beekeepers Nature Reserve and to the south by the Wanagarren Nature Reserve. Not only is it home to the Pinnacles Desert, one of the most remarkable and intriguing natural attractions in Western Australia, it also boasts pristine beaches along Kangaroo Point and Hangover Bay with coastal dune systems and rare native plants and flowers that grow in abundance in the low heathland areas.
Wildlife spotting within the Nambung National Park
There’s a diverse variety of native wildlife that make their home here in Nambung National Park, over 176 species in fact, including birds, reptiles, fish and mammals such as western grey kangaroos, emus, wallabies, dingoes, honey possums, red foxes and white-tailed black cockatoos.
The Pinnacles Desert
In the Pinnacles Desert, thousands of ancient limestone pillars rise up out of the barren landscape creating an otherworldly, lunar-like atmosphere. Each formation is a unique natural phenomena, varying in dimensions with different shapes, sizes, textures and colours. Some resemble large rounded tombstone structures whereas others are sharp, jagged columns that rise to a point, reaching up to 3.5 metres high above the yellow sand. Our 1 Day Pinnacles Desert Tour is the best way to learn more about this unique landscape.
Other walks within the Nambung National Park
At the northern side of the park at Lake Thetis there’s a hiking trail and boardwalk that loops around the small saline lake and is one of the only places in the world where you can view marine stromatolites and thrombolites or ‘living fossils.’ The unique and unusual fossilised structures date back over 3.6 billion years old and were built by tiny micro-organisms, smaller than the human eye can see, called cyanobacteria which resemble some of the earliest forms of life on earth.
For the active travellers who are looking to explore, there are several walking trails throughout the park, including an easy 4-5km hike that guides you towards a grand scenic lookout with unforgettable views across the Pinnacles to the Indian Ocean. The terrain is flat and easy to navigate so is suitable for all levels of fitness.
Kangaroo Point and Hangover Bay are also both perfect places to enjoy a swim, go snorkelling and surfing in the crystal clear waters or soak up some sunshine on the white sand beaches. You may also get a chance to spot sea lions, bottlenose dolphins and even humpback whales if you’re passing through during migration season If your looking for the best guided walks in Nambung National Park consider joining our 7 day Perth to Exmouth Tour.
Indigenous cultural significance
The Yued and the Wajuk people are acknowledged as the traditional indigenous custodians of the land here. The name ‘Nambung’ comes from an aboriginal word which means ‘land of crooked river’ referring to the winding river which crosses through the region and disappears into the natural limestone cave systems, creating waterholes in the wet season. These cave waterholes have been essential to the survival of semi-nomadic indigenous tribes for many generations and also hold huge cultural and spiritual significance.
Visit Nambung National Park next time you’re in Perth, WA
Any time of year is great to visit Nambung National Park but it is especially radiant in September and October when the weather cools down a little and the wildflowers and wattles come into bloom. The best views and photographs can be captured either early in the morning or late in the afternoon as shadows begin to ripple across the eerie landscape and the colours begin to change over the pinnacles as the sun descends into the Indian Ocean and darkness illuminates the infinite and expansive night sky above.