Cait & Jesse’s WA Adventure
We are excited to introduce Cait & Jesse who travelled the North West coast of Western Australia by bus using an Integrity Coach Lines Hop on Hop off Pass.
Cait & Jesse posted each day showing us all the wonderful things they saw and did on the West Aussie Backpackers page. However, we have included all their posts here so you can read about their trip in one place.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 1 (Kalbarri)
AND WE ARE ON OUR WAY!
We started our exciting adventure at 6pm in Perth, heading straight to the wonderful Kalbarri via Integrity Coach Lines. We used our hop on hop off pass to make for an easy traveling experience, stopping at Ajana for a quick shuttle to Kalbarri operated by the Kalbarri Backpackers YHA. We were greeted by the very friendly and welcoming driver, Joe, who also showed us around our accommodation at the Kalbarri YHA.
We started our morning with a bike ride, hired by the YHA, to visit the gorgeous foreshore. Despite the wind, the water was calm and perfect for a morning swim. Afterwards we followed the path up the hill to find a lookout covering the whole of Kalbarri which had a view to die for. All the bike riding made us hungry, so off we went to the Gilgai Tavern for a delicious lunch followed by a walk along Back Beach. The sunset was gorgeous which gave us opportunities to grab some great photos and videos.
Once the sun had set, we were picked up by D’GUY Charters , driven by Guy himself, for a stargazing tour at the Skywalk Lookout. Our tour guide, Christina, was super knowledgeable and friendly giving us an amazing tour of the night sky. Christina was highly prepared with a telescope and lessons on taking great photos of the milky way (even from your phone). We highly recommend this tour for anyone from astronomy enthusiasts to those who are wanting to learn more about our night sky.
What a great start to our adventure and we can’t wait to share the rest of it with all of you! — in Kalbarri, Western Australia.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 2 (Kalbarri)
Today Kalbarri surpassed our high expectations with its deep history and beautiful scenery. We started our morning with the "Pink Lake and Coastal Cliffs" tour run by D’GUY Charters, once again hosted by the super friendly Guy as our guide. He arrived at our accommodation right on time and we left for our first stop, the Pink Lake. With such a passionate tour guide, we were told about the history, wildlife and fauna of Kalbarri before arriving at the Pink Lake lookout. What a view!! The lake was bigger than expected and had the prettiest shade of pink from top to bottom.
After getting lots of photos of the beautiful Pink Lake, we headed towards the various cliffs along the coast starting at Natural Bridge and Castle Cove. The view was INCREDIBLE with rock formations you won't see anywhere else. To add to the experience, we were fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of multiple whales at both lookouts. D’Guy Charters came prepared with morning tea for us which included Orange Juice and a tasty croissant from a local bakery before heading to Pot Alley, Red Bluff and Grandstand.
Pot Alley, Red Bluff and Grandstand not only looked amazing, but was rich with wildlife to admire such as hawks and dolphins. All the cliffs and immaculate sceneries are wheelchair friendly so no one gets to miss these opportunities. Guy knew more about the history, fauna and wildlife of Kalbarri than what you would find on Google so the tour was definitely worth it.
As night came, we were blessed with another amazing sunset while enjoying a beer at the Kalbarri Motor Hotel making for a relaxing evening in this wonderful town.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 3 (Kalbarri)
A new day, a new adventure!
As soon as the sun was up, we put our boots and flannel on for a ranch life experience on horseback that anyone would enjoy. Big River Ranch, Kalbarri did not disappoint and was in walking distance from the Centre of Kalbarri. Perfect for all riding levels, we went on a 2-hour trail ride through and around the Murchison River. The trail was guided by two enthusiastic and informative tour guides, educating everyone on wildlife and the history of the Murchison River and Castle Rock. Unfortunately, we did not have time to explore Castle Rock to see the aboriginal rock art but will be a must when we return to Kalbarri another day!
All the walking and horse-riding made us hungry so off we went to Finlay's Kalbarri which was recommended by Guy from D’GUY Charters. We can see why it was recommended with how tasty the food was, matched perfectly with a great selection of house brewed beers. Finley's is quite popular so it is necessary to book online but it is worth it for any seafood lover (options for the land lovers too).
As this is the last day in Kalbarri, we decided to enjoy the evening at the Gilgai Tavern to enjoy a pint and watch the footy before heading back to the Kalbarri YHA. We will be taking an early morning shuttle ride to Ajana operated by the Kalbarri Backpackers YHA, before a bus ride to shark bay via Integrity Coach Lines, so we needed a good night’s sleep. The hop on hop off pass that Integrity Coach Lines offer made traveling to our next destination super easy. Kalbarri has been amazing and we are sad to leave so soon but we can't wait to see what adventures await right around the corner.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 4 (Shark Bay)
Today we continue our grand adventure going onwards and upwards towards Shark Bay. Integrity Coach Lines picked us up from Ajana, just outside Kalbarri for a quick drive up to Shark Bay. From here, a shuttle operated by Integrity Coach Lines took us to the gorgeous Denham. The shuttle driver, Roger, was friendly and humorous for such an early morning drive. When we arrived, we were immediately blown away by how beautiful Denham is with its calm and vibrant waters.
We were excited to start exploring so we decided to walk the Denham Discovery Trail as soon as the sun was rising. All 11 points of interest were rich with history, showing off just how beautiful this town is. The trail invites fantastic photo opportunities including some of our favourites, the old gaol, pioneer park and the old pearler. We ended the trail at the Shark Bay World Heritage Discovery and Visitor Centre which digs deeper into the rich history this town has. With a cheap multiday pass, we were able to enjoy the museum and all the interactive exhibits they had to offer. To add to the experience, we were lucky enough to catch a 3D short film called "Fire on Water" which is a must for any war history enthusiasts.
With some free time on our hands we explored some of the local businesses and we fell in love with an adorable little shop named "The Little Shop" that sells trinkets, souvenirs, local crafts and great coffee. With a rustic aesthetic and beach views, it is the perfect spot to relax and read a book.
A new town means a new tour, so we booked the Big Lagoon tour run by Shark Bay Coastal Tours. Our tour guide Bec, was a wonderful host who had a great sense of humour and a passion for her town. On the way to the Big Lagoon we stopped frequently to identify animal tracks, eat some tasty plants while being enriched with how this town became what it is today. When we arrived, we hiked up a portion of the Big Lagoon and wow the water was beautiful. Gorgeous views matched with lots of photo opportunities. If you bring your bathers, it would be the perfect spot for a swim.
To finish off this brilliant tour, we stopped by the natural hot spring. Don't be fooled by the brown coloured water as this natural spring was clean and felt like a heated spa. Being the school holidays it was quite busy but that did not stop us from having a quick dip before heading home. What a remarkable start to our Shark Bay chapter.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 5 (Shark Bay)
Yesterday we spent our day in the wonderful town of Denham which was full of activities and sites to see, but today we wanted to see what else Shark Bay had to offer. So, to ensure we experienced everything in our short stay, we decided to hire a car for quick transportation.
Our first tour of the day was at the Ocean Park Aquarium Shark Bay, only 8 minutes south of Denham. As soon as we walked through the entrance we were welcomed with a smile and great customer service. Despite us not knowing tours were available, they we happy to squeeze us in at the last second and we are so glad they could. The tour was not only interesting and educational, but allowed us the opportunity to see marine life that we had never seen before. Our friendly tour guide Jake, even gave us a demonstration on how these different species eat, including a shark feeding! Blown away by the tour, we decided to stay a little longer by browsing their store and having some morning tea at their cafe.
After enjoying our time at Ocean Park Aquarium, it was time for our next exciting tour. Shark Bay Scenic Quad Bike Tours offered an affordable and fun way to explore the sights of Shark bay. If you are as adventurous as we are, then you will love this tour. Riding around Little Lagoon will have you mesmerised at how beautiful this area is. A ride up the hills allowed us to get some great photos while learning about shark bay's sustainable energy sources and nearby landmarks. The lookouts and views are only accessible by quad bike or 4WD so the tour was definitely worth it. However, we recommend bringing sunglasses or safety goggles the avoid sand and dust getting into your eyes.
Having been on 2 tours today, we were getting tired but we couldn't pass on seeing Shell Beach before heading back to our accommodation at Bay Lodge. Shell beach is a gorgeous location with a site you won't find anywhere else. Millions of shells made up the beach with crystal clear water for a relaxing swim. We didn't even need to worry about getting sand in our hire car as the thick layer of shells kept our feet from getting sandy. Another great location for photos and an experience you won’t find anywhere else.
Feeling exhausted, we headed back to our accommodation for another early nights rest in preparation for an early morning bus ride with Integrity Coach Lines. We have thoroughly enjoyed Shark Bay with its gorgeous scenery and friendly townsfolk. Another destination we are sad to leave so soon but Broome is incoming and we are very excited for the fun adventures we have planned.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 6 (Shark Bay --> Broome)
Shark bay has given us some brilliant memories, leaving us with no regrets. So with an early morning wake up, we said goodbye to that beautiful town and took a quick shuttle to meet an Integrity Coach Lines bus for a long ride to Broome. This portion of our adventure has mainly been spent moving along the coast. We were very fortunate that Integrity Coach Lines supplied comfortable seating with access to USB charging outlets to keep us entertained in addition to movies provided by the coach. With a night long trip, we decided to purchase an affordable blanket sold onboard to help keep us warm during the cool night.
The long bus ride was decided as it saved us a night’s accommodation and allows us to attend a thrilling "swimming with whale sharks" tour in Exmouth later in our trip. With multiple quick stops along the way showed us future destinations we wished we could have squeezed into our holiday like the gorgeous Coral Bay and Carnarvon. So, make sure to stay tuned for the exciting activities and crazy adventures we have planned over the next couple of weeks.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 7 (Broome)
A comfortable night’s sleep on an Integrity Coach Lines bus made for a brilliant and energetic first day in the town of Broome. Being our first time visiting, we were pleasantly surprised by the size of this town and the bustling community so early in the morning. We started our day going straight into the action by getting a 72 hour bus pass with Broome Explorer Bus alongside a map with activities across Broome.
Quickly into our morning adventures, we had a backpack malfunction. However, we were fortune enough that Broome is one of our biggest destinations, with multiple souvenir and convenience stores. We were able to purchase a new bag affordably and quickly. The Broome explorers bus conveniently goes by every half hour so we wasted no time by first exploring the Japanese and Chinese Cemeteries before visiting the Aboriginal Art Gallery. What a beautiful place to visit and we found the history, stated on various plaques around the cemeteries to be very interesting. The art gallery had the most gorgeous pieces of art to not only view, but to also purchase. We stopped for a coffee at the food truck positioned just outside before heading to our next stop.
On the way to lunch, we took the Broome Explorers Bus to a hiking trail, not knowing where the path would lead us. We were very quickly surprised with a beautiful view and an amazing beach. The weather was perfect and water looked amazing so we decided that we must come back before we leave Broome for a dip in the water. The hike had made us hungry, so off we went to Matso's Beer for lunch via the Explorers Bus. We were thrilled that with our 72-hour bus pass, we were able to grab a tasting paddle of 5 beers for free with our lunch! The food was fantastic and the beers were even better. My personal favourite was the mango beer which I highly recommend.
We were very excited for the night markets so we headed towards the foreshore for another drink at the Wild Flower Broome while the markets were being set up. The cocktails at the Wildflower were inspired by aboriginal bush tucker and herbs which were to die for and worth every dollar for the avid gin fans (other options available too). With the markets opening early, we rushed on over to enjoy the atmosphere and there really was a lot to enjoy. With a diverse range of stalls, food vans and live music made for a relaxing and enjoyable night. Perfect for families, friends and couples, we highly recommend going to the Thursday night markets when in Broome.
As the sun was setting and lots more photos were taken, we decided to check into The Roey. What we thought would be an early night’s sleep quickly changed when we met the friendliest bunch of people in our mixed rooms. We were quickly invited for some drinks and to enjoy the nightlife of Broome with our new friends. The Roey hold weekly wet t-shirt nights every Thursday with a DJ and a great atmosphere. Half of Broome must've been there as it was so busy but we must say that Broome has a great nightlife scene and we highly recommend the event, though it wouldn't be for everyone.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 8 (Broome)
Our second day in Broome was a blast, starting this morning treating ourselves with a nice breakfast at the Dragonfly Cafe. The food was incredible and really stood out as one of the best eateries we've had in Broome with some dishes made with local ingredients. After breakfast we wanted to further explore what this town had to offer and ended up going through the ins and outs of the local china town. With a large range of stores, we were able to find some great souvenirs to take home and got to capture some more photos to add to our album.
Time flew by and it was time to get ready for a Dinosaur adventure tour with Broome Dinosaur Adventures. Yes, I said dinosaurs! We were thoroughly impressed with how amazing this tour was, perfectly suited for all ages. To make this tour even better, we were picked up from our accommodation making travel super easy. When we arrived at the tour, we were greeted by one of tour guides who was bubbly, funny and informative on Broomes history and sites to see that we could not find on Google. After a photo opportunity at the beach we got on a boat across the water to a secluded beach. Our second tour guide was then welcomed and the chemistry between the tour guides was amazing. They worked together so well to not only be great tour guides, but to be great performers. Traveling along the water we saw marine life, such as majestic dolphins and some jellyfish.
When we finally arrived at the secluded beach, we wasted no time by hiking a small distance to the amazing and massive fossilised dinosaur footprints. Our tour guide was full of enthusiasm and information regarding these fossils which added to the whole experience. What an opportunity to have seen as there is no other place on Earth with this many dinosaur footprints. The tour only got better as we left the secluded beach and cruised towards Dampier creek for the most beautiful and relaxing part of our tour. Dampier creek was absolutely gorgeous with its wildlife and turquoise coloured water as seen in the photos we took. A few glasses of champagne, large grazing boards and a vibrant sunset made us feel pampered as we cruised around the creek until dark.
As we returned from the tour, we were welcomed back with a cocktail and a tapas dinner in their pretty reception area, a popular weddings destination. Blown away by this tour, we agreed this has been a big highlight to Broome and can't wait for our last day here tomorrow before continuing our adventure down the coast with our easy to use hop on hop off pass supplied by Integrity Coach Lines.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 9 (Broome)
What a tremendous last day we had in Broome! We started our morning bright and early to visit the Streeters Jetty. A remarkable piece of Broomes history and great for photos. Unfortunately, we went when the tide was out but that did not stop us from taking photos and enjoying the view. Broome seems to always have something on, thriving with activity so we caught the Broome Explorer Bus using our multiday pass and headed to the weekend markets. We were surprised with how busy and large the markets were with various food stalls, local art, jewellery and accessories for sale. With a great atmosphere and live music, it was the perfect way to start the weekend.
Being our last day in Broome, we knew we had to return to the beach we visited the other day accessed from one of the Broome Explorers bus stops for a swim at a crystal clear beach. It was absolutely beautiful and described by Cait as the best beach she has ever been to. Right next to cable beach we enjoyed taking photos and cooling off from Broome's warm weather. We decided to walk along the coast to get to Cable Beach ending up at Zanders Cable Beach for lunch. With our explorer bus pass we were able to get a free cocktail from their brilliant cocktail selection paired with a tasty seafood platter. We spent most of the afternoon here as the view was immaculate.
Just before the sun set we walked down to cable beach for one last swim while the sun set. We were amazed at what happened next. We were privileged to see multiple wild dolphins who came up mere metres away to say hi. With the sunset behind these beautiful creatures so close to us created a memory that would last forever. Unfortunately, we couldn’t capture this moment on camera but it was a moment worth living. After an incredible evening and sunset, it was time to head back to town for an early night coach from Broome to Karratha via Integrity Coach Lines. It is always sad to leave these beautiful towns of WA but it is always exciting to see what the next chapter will bring.
See you all in Karratha.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 10 (Karratha)
Once again we had a comfortable night ride in the Integrity Coach Lines bus saving us another nights worth of accommodation and a place to charge our phones using our hop on hop off pass to move back down the coast towards Karratha. As we arrived early, we suspected we wouldn't be able to check into Karratha Backpackers but the owner was super friendly and allowed us to check in early free of charge.
Having another warm sunny day, we decided to catch a bus to Dampier to walk the Red Dog Trail. We got to enjoy iconic locations that can be seen in the Red Dog movie. It was a great 10km hike with multiple photo opportunities along the way with plenty of wildlife to see. Although you don’t have to walk to whole 10km to still enjoy the trail. We met numerous species of lizards and kangaroos throughout the trail. A perfect area for families as we were impressed with the large playground and multiple facilities available including BBQ areas, public toilets and water stations.
After such a pleasant hike, we worked up an appetite and grabbed lunch at the SOAK In Dampier. With a huge menu, there would be something for everyone matched with a big drinks menu too. The food was yummy and the view was even better. We decided to spend some time at the SOAK in Dampier before taking a public bus back to Karratha and settling in for the evening with an early night’s sleep as we were exhausted from today’s long hike. We hope the great weather continues tomorrow as we explore deeper into Karratha's history.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 11 (Karratha)
After a comfortable night staying at the Karratha Backpackers, we decided to treat ourselves to a nice breakfast before heading out for a long hike across the Yaburara Heritage Trail. With multiple coffee awards, we were quickly gravitated towards Lo's. If you are interested in reading more about Lo's and the other eateries we have been on during this holiday and around Perth, then visit Cait and I's food review page on Instagram @dreamteamfoodies. Otherwise, with a massive menu and the best coffee I have had this holiday, I highly recommend stopping here whenever you are in Karratha.
After a hearty breakfast, we just had to explore the Yaburara Heritage Trail. This hike is quite a difficult hike, with a level of fitness needed to complete. Although you don't need to do the whole hike to enjoy it, each point of interest is worth the visit. Sites 1, 2 and 3 are easily accessible for those who don't want a long hike that cover some beautiful rock artworks. The trail explores various old Aboriginal rock art and artefacts dating back thousands of years ago. The amount of art we found amazed us which was such a gorgeous site to see. Along the trail we hiked up hills and along valleys that created the most beautiful views of and around Karratha. What a fantastic hike and workout with a history lesson in Aboriginal art along the way.
After the first hike was completed, we felt pumped up and keen for more gorgeous views. So, we walked all the way to Searipple Lookout and Maitland Lookout on the other side of town. We recommend doing the trail and lookouts on different days unless you want to push your body to its limits but we are so glad to have squeezed it into our Karratha stay as the view, like always, was worth it. The lookouts had plagues explaining the history of each location and pointing out points of interest that can be seen through the built-in binoculars provided at each lookout.
As we walked back to our accommodation we found alternative activities in Karratha that we were unfortunately unable to make due to our short stay. The Red Earth Arts Precinct always had a movie or show on to view and the circus was also in town that we would have loved to see. Overall, Karratha was another stop that was a must to see. Tired from all the hiking, we had an early night and was ready for our morning bus ride via Integrity Coach Lines from Karratha to Exmouth for some of our most exciting activities yet. See you all there.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 12 (Karratha --> Exmouth)
Karratha made sure we got our 10,000 daily steps in, but like all good things, our Karratha stay was coming to an end. As the sun rose, it was time to pack our bags and hop on another bus operated by Integrity Coach Lines. This time we were heading towards the gorgeous town of Exmouth. As there is some distance between Karratha and Exmouth, the bus ride took up the morning and a portion of the afternoon. We were not fussed by this as the coach was comfortable like always and allowed us to recharge for the crazy experiences we have planned over the next couple of days.
As we arrived in Exmouth, we were blessed with great weather and headed towards our accommodation at the Potshot Hotel. With nothing planned for this afternoon, we decided to explore some of Exmouth by walking into the centre of town and looking through the surf shops and souvenir stores. Fantastic for gifts or quality branded clothing.
Being our first night in Exmouth we chose to have dinner at an Italian restaurant with remarkable reviews. The BBqFather deserved every good review it had as the pasta was sensational matched perfectly with a drink from their bar. We were both very impressed with the food and fortunate they were able to squeeze us in without a booking. A highly recommended restaurant for lovers of Italian cuisine like we are.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 13 (Exmouth)
Our first taste of Exmouth has been fantastic. The gorgeous beaches and perfect weather has really made loving this town easy. We had a tasty croissant for breakfast from the local bakery before starting our first Exmouth tour. Through the Ningaloo Glass Bottom Boat we were fortunate to be a part of their Coral Viewing and Snorkelling tour. Not only was this tour affordable, it opened up a whole new world of adventuring to us. Brilliant for all ages, we agree that it is a must experience and here's why.
Our first tour guide, Caitlyn, picked us up from our accommodation and headed to the Ningaloo Coral Reef with a couple stops on the way for photo opportunities and quick history lessons. Caitlyn was educational, friendly and had a sense of humour which made this tour even more enjoyable. Exmouth truly has a fascinating history that we did not expect to hear during this tour and was a fun addition to what was already planned. As we arrived at the Ningaloo reef, we were introduced to Connor, our second and equally brilliant tour guide and skipper. The glass boat was truly remarkable as the floor was so clear, making easy to see the wonders below the water.
Entering the Coral Reef was gorgeous, full of marine life and beautiful coral to see for hundreds of metres. Caitlyn expressing her passion through such an educational tour on the different corals below while keeping us engaged and interested. The sight was truly beautiful but the photos we took just couldn't match what could be seen in person.
After a ride around the coral reef, seeing 1000-year-old coral and fish that weigh more than me, it was time to snorkel. I can't express how incredible this experience was. To be able to see all this wildlife and coral up close was an experience I'd never get bored of. Hundreds of fish scattered in all sizes and colours would have been perfect to capture but we unfortunately had no waterproof camera so it was an experience that just had to be lived.
With an amazing tour coming to an end, we were feeling hungry and headed to Froth Brewing Co for a late lunch. A good feed and a good beer were followed by shopping for some souvenirs. Feeling good, we had a swim in the PotShot hotel pool before settling in for the evening. Exmouth has already given us another reason to love the ocean and we cannot wait for tomorrow's next big adventure.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 14 (Exmouth)
Today was incredible and we can't wait to tell you why. We woke up nice and early to prepare for another tour which we have been excited for all holiday. A charter operated by Ningaloo Discovery picked us up from our accommodation for the magical "Ningaloo Whale Shark Swim on a Sailing Catamaran" tour. Lasting all day with food, drinks and comfortable bean bags available onboard, we were able to live a life of luxury.
As we arrived at the Ningaloo Coral Reef, we took a quick ride to the Ningaloo Discovery's massive sailing catamaran where we were told about the wonderful whale sharks we were about to swim with. Various safety protocols and rules were clearly stated and we also had a test snorkelling swim straight away to make sure everything was working correctly before going to the deep blue sea. Pool noodles were available for the not so strong swimmers and children so the tour is a perfect experience for all ages.
While the Ningaloo Discovery were looking for a whale shark, we were offered a yummy snack and tea or coffee as we were whale watching Humpback Whales around our boat. It was already an amazing experience at this point. Very quickly a whale shark was spotted so as per instructions, we got ready and waited. As the staff worked their magic in getting to the right position, we jumped off the boat. Then it was time. We looked down and wow, we were speechless. This massive whale shark swimming near metres away from us looked incredible. We swam alongside such a majestic creature for about 5 minutes before the boat came to pick us up again. Words cannot describe how amazing this experience was and should be experienced by everyone as it was truly remarkable.
We were lucky enough to swim with the whale shark another 3 times before lunch. During these amazing swims we also saw jellyfish, seahorses and various species of fish. Lunch was delicious as we sat comfortably onboard continuing to whale watch and even spotting a rare Dugong. The afternoon was spent snorkelling around the Ningaloo Coral Reef and taking amazing photos with the photographer which we should hopefully have in the next couple days. We saw the beautiful coral and marine life once again, including a massive sting ray in all its glory. Back to boat we enjoyed a glass of champagne and various fruits before returning to shore.
Today was one of those days I'll never forget and can happily say I have crossed something off my bucket list. Ningaloo Discovery made this amazing adventure easy with trained, friendly staff and suppling wetsuits, snorkels and flippers for everyone. Being such a big day, we decided to have a nap before heading out to dinner. We decided to check out another brewery in town ironically named the Whalebone Brewing Company. Live music, good pizza and a great country atmosphere was the perfect way to end our amazing day.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 15 (Exmouth --> Jurien Bay)
Waking up in Exmouth for the very last time had us feeling a little blue to have to leave so soon. However, the memories we made were to stay with us forever. We packed our bags and checked out but had time for one last activity before our bus, operated by Integrity Coach Lines, were to arrive.
We were fortunate to have found time to explore the Ningaloo Aquarium and Discovery Centre. The building itself was massive and modern welcoming us with a cute little cafe as we walked in. Cafe Muiron gave us a tasty breakfast and offered unique, home-made tea's based on the Ningaloo Coral Reef. To add to how cute this cafe is, they had a wall of local goods for sale including a selection of honey and coffee beans. This place is a must if you are visiting the aquarium.
With Cafe Muiron making us feel satisfied, we walked over to the aquarium offering affordable tickets, being family and wheelchair friendly. We were pleasantly surprised that we were not only walking into an aquarium, but also a room educating us on cyclones and a reptile room. Learning about the harm and history of cyclones in Exmouth was very fascinating with interactive exhibits, including a cyclone room to simulate just how scary they can be. Finishing up, we walked into the aquarium and it was gorgeous.
The aquarium had high ceilings allowing for massive pieces of artwork to hang showing off how big marine life can get. Interactive exhibits near the fish tanks were available for added education of what you were looking at which was popular with children. A vast range of sea creatures were available to view including seahorses, eels and the most colourful array of fish. These beautiful creatures made taking photos easy.
Lastly, we stopped in the reptile room showing off Australian snakes and lizards. We were lucky to witness a lizard feeding from one of the staff members which was such a fascinating process to watch. Finishing up, we were glad to have experienced such a flashy looking aquarium before our bus ride to our next and final destination. So, we hopped on the Integrity coach from Exmouth to Jurien Bay for hopefully a fantastic last couple days. We cannot wait to share our next adventures. See you all tomorrow.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 16 (Jurien Bay)
The brilliant Integrity Coach Lines gave us another easy and comfortable form of travel between towns along the coast. We stopped multiple times for short breaks and a quick dinner at roadhouses along the way so we didn't need to worry about food as per usual. We arrived in Jurien Bay early in the morning and checked into the Jurien Bay Hotel Motel. With great facilities and a bar out front, it was a great last stop for our amazing holiday.
We started our morning with another incredible ocean experience. Turquoise Safaris operated the best "Sea Lions Tour on Sound Waves Boat" and if you know us, we just had to go swimming with the fun-loving Sea Lions. We left the Jurien Bay harbour and headed towards the Sea Lions home alongside fun and informative tour guides. The boat ride was fun and bumpy which added to the experience as it felt like a carnival ride at times. When we arrived, we could see dozens of Sea Lions playing on the beach. So, it was time to get our wetsuits, snorkel and flippers which were all supplied by Turquoise Safaris if you don’t have your own. For those that don't want to swim but want to see the Sea Lions in all their glory, there is a cheaper option to stay and look from the boat.
A few photos later, we jumped in the water and waited for the curious creatures to come and say hi. A few minutes pass before two gorgeous sea lions swam up to the group to check us out and play with us. They were jumping out of the water and swimming around us. These amazing creatures really are the puppy dogs of the ocean with how playful they are. Another incredible experience that I would recommend to anyone. If only we had a waterproof camera to really express how fun this experience was for us all. There normally was no more than two Sea Lions around at once until the last 10 minutes when we counted seven beautiful Sea Lions circling around and giving us their version of little kisses. What a way to finish this fantastic tour.
Swimming with the dogs of the sea, made us hungry. So on the way to our next tour, we stopped off at the local bakery for a healthy roll and got ready for the amazing "Pinnacles Sunset Tour" operated by Jurien Bay Adventure Tours. Unfortunately, the Sound Waves Healing that we were supposed to attend during this tour got cancelled with reasonable grounds. However, the amazing and incredible Cass who runs Jurien Bay Adventure Tours, made sure that we would not miss out on the sunset by organising her well-informed mentor, Michael, to pick us up from our accommodation and walk us through the geological site of the pinnacles.
Being on this tour with Michael was brilliant as he explained how the pinnacles were formed and the history these massive formations have gone through. Michael proved to us that this landmark were not just rocks, but layers of history that tell a story of what was, millions of years ago. The beautiful Cass organised a bottle of wine for us while we enjoy the sunset. Unfortunately, the sunset was hidden by a pesky cloud but that did not stop us from enjoying the view and each other’s company. Being interested in Jurien Bay's stories and history, Michael took us to Hangover Bay on the way home for some final photos. We had a blast on this tour and we highly recommend any of Cass's tours through Jurien Bay Adventure Tours as this wasn't our first tour with Cass and it certainly won't be our last.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - Day 17 (Jurien Bay --> Perth)
Our last hurrah!
The final day in Jurien Bay was an absolute blast. The weather was forecast to rain but we were blessed with another sunny day and warm temperatures. Jurien has surprised us with its friendly people and beautiful town but we couldn't just leave without experiencing the popular and exciting, Skydive Jurien Bay - Perth. A big one on our bucket list was going to be ticked off today and we were super excited and equally nervous.
We checked out of our accommodation and grabbed a croissant from the local bakery before getting ready to jump out of a plane. The staff were friendly and pumped to be giving us our first skydiving experience. We decided to go big and jump from 15,000ft and added the movie package as this was an experience we wanted to remember. Our guides ran us through the plan and the safety precautions. They were well educated, confident and experienced so we felt safe from beginning to end.
After a short wait, the plane landed and we got straight on without hesitation. Taking off made the experience start to feel so real as we saw the most incredible view of Jurien Bay. Before, during and after take-off we were being recorded by our guide to make an amazing video at the end. Once we reached 15,000ft, it was finally time. One by one we sat out the door of the plane and already the adrenaline was kicking in. Then finally the moment we were waiting for, we jumped. Words cannot describe the incredible feeling of being on top of the world as we were freefalling for over 60 seconds before the parachute went up. The view was amazing, with sights of whales near the horizon.
Cait & Jesse’s Tour of WA - FINAL
Here we are, safely back at home with memories that will last a lifetime. Multiple bucket list items have been ticked off and thousands of photos to show off to the world. What an incredible holiday this has been and I'm so glad we got to take everyone along with us. Every day had its highlights from the amazing coastal cliffs in Kalbarri, to the rich history of Yarubara Heritage trail in Karratha, to swimming with the majestic whale sharks in Exmouth. So much would not have been possible without our tour providers and mode of transport so we would like to say a big thank you!
Firstly, thank you to Integrity Coach Lines for making traveling along the coast easy, comfortable and affordable. Purchasing the Hop on Hop off pass allowed us to book a seat whenever we were ready to move to the next town along the coast. Integrity Coach Lines saved us multiple nights of accommodation and giving us a place to charge our phones. Affordable blankets were available to purchase from the friendly bus drivers which made night travelling warm.
Next we thank all the incredible tour providers for giving us the experiences of a lifetime. Without these tours, we would not have been able to complete half of our bucket list items. These tours provided information and opportunities that we would not have gotten without them. So here is a huge thank you to the following providers:
Shuttle Operator - Kalbarri Backpackers YHA
Accommodation - Kalbarri Backpackers YHA
Shark Bay Coastal Tours
Shark Bay Scenic Quad Bike Tours
Shuttle Operator - Integrity Coach Lines
Accommodation - Bay Lodge - Denham - Shark Bay
Broome Explorer Bus
Accommodation - The Roey
Accommodation - Karratha Backpackers
Ningaloo Glass Bottom Boat
Accommodation - Potshot Hotel
Jurien Bay Adventure Tours
Jurien Bay Hotel Motel
With our holiday at its end, we highly recommend living your own. Western Australia has so much to offer and to share with everyone. Amazing photos of the whale sharks from Exmouth have arrived and if you can't tell, we were so happy to have experienced such a crazy adventure. Until the next one!
- Cait & Jesse