Gateway to Cape Range National Park and Ningaloo Reef, Exmouth is surrounded by the stunning and pristine beaches of the North West Cape, including Turquoise Beach – one of Australia’s best beaches.
Here you can snorkel, surf, stand up paddle-board, kayak, fish or simply relax on a choice of white-sand beaches that line the cape.
Exmouth is the centre for numerous outback adventure tours, eco safari trips, game fishing charters, snorkelling or guided glass-bottom boat tours as well as year-round scenic flights over Cape Range National Park and Ningaloo Reef.
The town offers a good range of accommodation options from lodges, resorts and hotels, to chalets, backpackers and camp sites, with dining options to suit every taste and budget.
Highlights in the town itself, and nearby, include…
The Ningaloo Centre is a priceless resource – a research, tourism, education and community hub – that allow you make the most of your time in the UNESCO World Heritage-Listed Ningaloo Coast
Here, you can make tour bookings, discover an abundance of marine life unique to Ningaloo Marine Park in the Aquarium, and view unique displays where you can explore the fascinating ecology of Ningaloo Reef.
Within the Centre are three visitor galleries that contain images, interactive displays and various artefacts. Each of the three galleries focus on a different aspect of the region: the 'En Route to Exmouth' gallery is centred around the history of Exmouth; the 'Reef to Range' gallery explores the unique flora and fauna of the region; and the 'Terrestrial' gallery looks into the ancient landscapes surrounding Exmouth.
Ningaloo Centre is located at 2 Truscott Crescent, Exmouth and is open seven days a week from 8.30am to 5pm during April through November; and from 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday, and 9am to 1pm on Saturday from November to March.
Just a short drive from the centre of town, this is the ideal beach for a morning stroll, swim at high tide or to watch the moon at sunset rising over Exmouth Gulf.
Car parking, barbecue facilities, and a dog and vehicle free section of beach perfect for young families is found at the Warne Street end of the beach.
Most of the beach is accessible to 4WDs from both Warne Street and Willersdorf Road.
Considered the local’s favourite beach, the calm, sheltered waters of Bundegi Beach and accompanying reef provide pleasant swimming, snorkelling, diving, kayaking and fishing.
Boat owners can launch from the pier at the southern end of the beach.
Situated close to the VLF antenna towers, Bundegi Beach is around 15km (9mi) north of Exmouth.
These two islands are located around 15km (9nm) off the tip of the North West Cape – a short boat ride from Exmouth.
Here you can discover gorgeous, white-sand beaches and warm tropical waters teeming with amazing corals and a huge variety of marine life.
With coral walls, channels, caves, coral bommies and protected reef, the Muiron Islands offer world-class diving and snorkelling.
Top diving spots include the Cod Spot on South Muiron to view large potato cod and manta rays; the Keyhole, a 'swim through' dive channel with many overhangs in shapes of windows and keyholes as well as impressive coral shelves and plates to weave around.
The Gap, situated between North and South Muiron Islands, is a drift dive past colourful hard and soft corals, sponges and numerous marine life including fish, turtles and nurse sharks.
Visibility ranges between 5m to 20m depending on the weather and also how much plankton is in the water.
Dive and snorkelling tours to the Muiron Islands operate out of Exmouth, and can be arranged from Exmouth Diving Centre and Dive Ningaloo.
Just follow the signpost from Exmouth along Yardie Creek Rd to find the shipwreck of the cattle steamer that ran aground on the reef in 1907.
The shipwreck is visible from the shore about 3km north of Dunes Surf Beach.
This is the most popular surf break near Exmouth, with great all-around surf conditions and clear blue waves.
The best swells for surfing are from July to October. Experienced surfers can paddle out from Lighthouse Bay to the Bommie, while beginners and grommets enjoy Wobiri Beach, south of Vlamingh Head Lighthouse.
Beachside facilities include a toilet, a wooden lookout shelter and a shade shelter. There is no drinking water at this site.
Dunes Surf Beach is located just off the Yardie Creek Road, about 17km (10mi) north of Exmouth.
This hilltop lighthouse offers spectacular views of the entire cape and make it a great place for whale spotting and sunset watching.
Built as a result of the wreck of the SS Mildura in 1907, the lighthouse was first lit in 1912 and relit, for the first time in 34 years, on 14 July, 2001 utilizing the original kerosene and counterweight system.
From the lookout at the base of Vlamingh Head Lighthouse enjoy one of the best panoramic ocean viewpoints on the coast, including the tip of North West Cape, the Harold E Holt Communications Station VLF towers, Muiron Islands, offshore oil-rigs, Ningaloo Reef and the township of Exmouth.
Vlamingh Head is also a popular locale to watch ocean sunsets and spot humpback whales during their annual migration from June to November.
Vlamingh Head Lighthouse is located just off the Yardie Creek Road, about 19km (12mi) north of Exmouth – a 15-minute drive.
Take a walk through the interpretive displays at this unattended open-air centre, and discover more about marine turtles, including loggerhead, green and hawksbill turtles found in the shallow waters of the Ningaloo Marine Park.
Learn about their life-cycle, the threats they face and how to view mating and nesting turtles and turtle hatchlings in the natural environment.
Join a guided evening tour to observe female nesting turtles. Turtle observation tours are run from the centre between November and March.
Viewing nesting female turtles and hatchlings with a guide minimises the possibility of disturbing the turtles and will increase the chance of female turtles successfully laying eggs.
Towards the end of the season you may enjoy a chance encounter with turtle hatchlings as they emerge from their nest, making their way to the ocean to start their long journey to adulthood.
The best times to view the turtles are between October and January, usually under the cover of darkness, when female turtles visit the beach to lay their eggs.
At night, from January to April, you may see new hatchlings making their dash for the sea.
Jurabi Turtle Centre is open year round and is located near the tip of the peninsula on the Yardie Creek Road, about 20km (12mi) north-west of Exmouth.
Exmouth’s clothing-optional beach is great if you’re seeking an all-over tan.
This long and narrow strip of white sand sits just south of Jurabi Turtle Centre on the Yardie Creek Road, about 21km (13mi) from Exmouth – a 20-minute drive.
Tantabiddi is the main boat launch point for whale shark tours, dive tours, eco tours and glass-bottomed boat tours of the northern part of Ningaloo Marine Park.
There are also two kayak moorings approximately 1.3km from the beach in Tantabiddi Sanctuary Zone, which offer some of the best snorkelling in the park from the kayak moorings in Tantabiddi Sanctuary Zone. Snorkelling at high tide only is recommended.
Tantabiddi is located off the Yardie Creek Road on the westernside the North West Cape, about 38km (23mi) from Exmouth – a 30-minute drive.
Cape Range National Park offers a spectacular panorama of jagged limestone peaks, heavily incised deep gorges and 50km (30mi) of wind-blown coastal dunes and pristine beaches that give access to the clear turquoise waters of Ningaloo Marine Park.
Located on the west side of the North West Cape, Cape Range National Park covers around 510km² (197mi²) and supports an abundance of wildlife including emus, echidnas, the rare black-flanked rock wallaby, five types of bat and more than 160 species of bird.
Here you can explore gorges and peer inside caves that provide a haven for wildlife as well as rare and unusual flora. There are more than 630 species of flowering plants on the West Cape peninsula and within the Cape Range National Park.
Many species of animals and plants are endemic to the North West Cape of Western Australia, such as the white centred variety of the Sturt's Desert Pea.
More about Cape Range National Park…
Make your own footprints in the silky soft white sand of one of Australia’s best beaches, known for its clear waters and lack of crowds – there's hardly ever many people here.
This long and uninterrupted stretch of white sand separates the iconic red rock landscape of Cape Range National Park from the emerald lagoons of Ningaloo Marine Park, one of the largest fringing reefs in the world.
Turquoise Bay Beach is ideal for snorkelling and swimming, with the Ningaloo Reef only a few metres from shore. Unwind and sunbathe on the powder-white sand, scuba dive the reef or wade into the lagoon and snorkel above brilliant coral gardens teeming with colourful tropical fish only metres from the shoreline.
Turquoise Bay is located 63km (39mi) south of Exmouth and can be accessed off Yardie Creek Road – a 50-minute drive.
More about Turquoise Bay…
Encompassing an area of 5000km² (1930mi²), the Ningaloo Reef is the largest fringing coral reef in Australia and the only large reef in the world found close to a continental land mass, making it an easy snorkel from shore – in places it's only 100m offshore.
The northern area of the Ningaloo Coast is dominated by the rugged Cape Range that extends down the coast and lies adjacent to the sheltered waters of Ningaloo Marine Park.
Here, the crystal clear waters are perfect for a variety of marine based activities including swimming, snorkelling, fishing and watching marine life, including whale sharks, manta rays, turtles and fish.
Scuba dive the outer reef to see dugongs, mantas, huge cod, dolphins, giant whale sharks and humpback whales in season.
More about Ningaloo Reef Marine Park…
A selection of the best accommodation options in Exmouth, and nearby include…
Mantarays Novotel Ningaloo Resort
Prices: from AUD465 per room
Description: Boasting ocean or marina views from your private balcony, Mantarays Novotel Ningaloo Resort overlooks Exmouth's stunning Sunrise Beach and offers an infinity pool, restaurant and bar. Guests have direct access to Ningaloo Reef. All accommodation features high ceilings, contemporary furnishings and satellite TV. Each has a private en suite bathroom with a shower and a hairdryer. All apartments and villas offer a 2-person spa bath. Guests can workout at the fitness centre and explore the beach and reef. Ningaloo Resort offers a tour desk which books fishing charters, diving and scenic flights. Mantaray's Restaurant serves a delicious buffet breakfast which includes your choice of fruits, pastries or bacon and eggs. The lunch and dinner menu features fresh local seafood, steak and desserts. Mantarays Ningaloo Resort is located just 5 minutes' drive from Exmouth Golf Club and 10 minutes' drive from Cape Range National Park.
Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef
Location: Cape Range National Park
Prices: from AUD1500 per eco-tent
Description: Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef is an exclusive safari camp, hidden in the white sand dunes of Western Australia’s Cape Range National Park. Sal Salis features 9 spacious wilderness tents which are just metres from the water’s edge, home to one of the world’s greatest fringing coastal coral reef. Each tent features an en suite natural composting bathroom. Native herb soaps and ecologically sound shampoos are provided. The chef at Sal Salis prepares contemporary cuisine comprised of local ingredients, served in the outdoor dining area with clear views of the Indian Ocean sunset. In the evening kangaroos and wallaroos appear from the bush for their evening graze. The camp’s expert staff offers insight to one of Australia’s best kept natural secrets, Ningaloo Reef. Sal Salis’s ecological principles ensure that guests have a minimal impact on the natural surroundings. Guests can enjoy many unique nature activities, including sea kayaking, wildlife viewing, gorge walks, fishing, and star gazing. The Exmouth Airport is less than a 2-hour drive and the Exmouth town centre it is about one-hour away. Shuttle service is available.
Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about these and more hotels in Exmouth at TripAdvisor.
The best time to visit Exmouth and the North West Cape region is during winter, from April to October when the days are sunny and warm.
Exmouth and the surrounding region, including Cape Range National Park, experience a hot sub-tropical climate with sunny, clear blue skies.
Winters are mild and pleasant with daytime temperatures around 25°C (77°F); temperatures rise to 40°C (104°F) in summer.
There is no specific wet and dry season in Exmouth: August to December is usually dry, rain is more likely to fall between January and July, usually with some monsoonal showers from January to April.
March sees the most rainfall of around 50mm (2in) on average.
Exmouth enjoys an average annual temperature of 24°C (75°F). On average, the warmest month is February, with an average temperature of 28°C (82°F), and the coolest month is July, with an average temperature of 18°C (65°F).
More about Exmouth weather…
Exmouth is located on the North West Cape of Western Australia, around 1270km (789mi) north of the state capital, Perth.
The most convenient route to Exmouth, from overseas and interstate, is by air to Perth Airport (PER) followed by a connecting flight to Learmonth Airport (LEA) and then shuttle bus, taxi or hire car to Exmouth.
Learmonth Airport (LEA) is located about 35km (22mi) south of Exmouth, a 25-minute drive.
Shuttle bus services from the airport to Exmouth are available seasonally. Exmouth Bus Charter operates airport transfers between the airport and Exmouth as well as other locations. Taxis and rental cars are available at the airport.
Learmonth Airport is about 97km (60mi) southeast of Turquoise Bay (1hr 10min by car) via the Minilya-Exmouth Rd and Yardie Creek Rd, and about 117km (73mi) north of Coral Bay (1hr 12min by car) via the Minilya-Exmouth Rd.
More about how to get to Exmouth…
Latest update: Exmouth, WA: 27 September, 2020
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