Nambung National Park is probably one of the most unusual national parks in Australia. Located only a two-hour drive north of Perth, the capital of Western Australia, it boasts a landscape that’s unique in the world, a landscape that is made up of thousands of limestone pillars rising up out of the desert floor. This desert is appropriately called the Pinnacles Desert.
Nambung National Park home of the Pinnacles Desert
Two other nature reserves, the Wanagarren Nature Reserve and the Southern Beekeepers Nature Reserve, border Nambung National Park, creating an expansive conservation area on the Coral Coast section of the Australian west coast. The national park lies effectively on the shores of the blue Indian Ocean. It consists of beautiful coastal dunes, wind-beaten heathlands and sandy desert. Although the aforementioned Pinnacles Desert is by far the most famous part of Nambung National Park, it only covers a small part of the park’s 17,500 hectares.
Limestone Statues and Golden Desert
They create a landscape that features golden desert sands, dotted with literally thousands of uniquely shaped natural limestone statues, some of them domes, others sharp peaks. Some pillars rise up to five meters tall. The Pinnacles Desert can be explored by car or on foot: there are both a scenic drive and a walking trail through and along the pillars.
The first place to go before heading toward the actual desert is the Discovery Centre. There you will find detailed information on Nambung National Park’s fauna and flora, as well as on its history and native people. Then you can continue to the pinnacles, well-informed, and ready to explore.
Visit the Pinnacles at Sunset
It is strongly recommended to visit right before sunset and, from the lookout platform, watch the setting sun paint the desert in the warmest of colors. The moving shadows of the pinnacles will make it feel like you’re on some other planet. It’s a truly fabulous place.
Great for Fishing, Snorkeling, Surfing and spotting Kangaroos
In addition to walking and driving through the Pinnacles Desert, Nambung National Park also offers other activities. The park’s coastal areas are excellent for swimming, snorkeling, surfing and fishing. Great fishing can be done at Thirsty Point Lookout, while the clear blue waters of Hangover Bay invite you to go swimming and snorkeling. A suggested place for kangaroo spotting is Kangaroo Point.
The best place to base yourself if you’re looking to explore the area is the town of Cervantes, located approximately 20 kilometers north of Nambung National Park. That town is home to several tour companies offering deep sea fishing, diving and whale watching excursions.