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karijini National Park - how to get there

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Rome, Italy
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karijini National Park - how to get there

Hi all, with my family (we are 5) I plan to spend 8-9 days with a campervan in the Cape Range national Park and then we have 4-5 more days which we wanted to use to visit the Kaijini Nat Park. However, I now realized how far it is from Exmouth (10 hours). I thought to rent a car to reach the park and then possibly leave it in Port Hedland, but it seems extremely costly and I may have to go back to Exmouth. Do you think that it is worthwhile to go there ? Is there along the road some interesting place where to stop ? is the travel in itself interesting ?

thanks a lot

Sandro

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Perth, Australia
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1. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

Hi Sandro

You have done some homework on the distances involved which is a good start. These distances can be a real obstacle when trying to get to several interesting destinations spread out across Western Australia! Sometimes there is not much between places except refueling stops at roadhouses.

You have mentioned three destinations - maybe pick two and maximise time in both, eg Exmouth/Coral Bay/Cape Range National Park, then drive thru to Karijini National Park area. According to your personal interests some people find the country in between fascinating. Others find it fairly flat and boring (eg children) .

Port Hedland tends to be very expensive at present as there is a shortage of accomodation due to massive new works underway for iron ore mining expansion so consider how high this is on your trip list. Its largely a remote industrial town although it has its own points of interest of course

As a suggestion perhaps fly (Skywest or Qantas airlines) to Exmouth via Learmonth airport , rent a vehicle in Exmouth, drive to Karijini for a few days and back to Exmouth - car rental will be considerably less expensive if you can return the car to the original town.

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

Hi Sandro.

Kerry has given you very good advice & suggestions.

Just to add; WA is very difficult regarding accommodation due to the Mining Industry. You will need to BOOK everything in advance otherwise you will be extremely disappointed.

IMO; depending on your budget ???

I would fly Perth to Exmouth & pick up a car to explore Coral Bay / Cape Range NP / Monkey MIa & return the car back to the airport.

We did this & had no real problems.

Please do not THINK about driving your car off the seal roads unless you have a 4WD. - the dirt roads are very sandy & its extremely easy to get bogged ! ()

Uden, The...
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3. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

Hi and welcome to the forum

Where are you renting the CV from? Perth? In that case you'll need your 2 weeks already between Perth and Exmouth and the many places to visit. Or are you flying to Learmonth first?

Tet

Karratha, Australia
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4. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

You also have to keep in mind what time of year you are thinking of coming to the north-west. November 1st - April 30th (summer) is the wet season and cyclones. May 1st - October 31st (winter) is the dry season. Besides being VERY humid up this way in summer, it's not called the wet season for nothing. If we get a good downpour of rain, all roads, sealed and unsealed, get cut off by flood waters. Please don't be complacent when driving in this area. The state of WA is vast with areas that are inhospitable and down right dangerous for the unexperienced. Also please make sure that when you read the warnings at Karijini you take them seriously. People have been seriously injured and some have even died when walking the gorges of Karijini. I'm not trying to frighten you, but in the outback you can be a long way from help.

Jamaica
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5. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

It's definetly worth going, Karijini has the most amazing gorges IMO something not to be missed. I have driven from Ningaloo to Karijini on several occasions, my experience was very little points of interest along that road, you would have to detour a lot to see something other than the drive itself. The drive is for the most part through the Hammersley ranges which are kind of interesting but nothing spectacular. Good luck in your decision.

Rome, Italy
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6. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

dear all thanks a lot for your advice

indeed I am flying to Exmouth (on the 23rd of August) and I am planning to stay first at the Cape Range National Park with a campervan and then go to Karijini (the first days of September). Sorry I did not mention these information in my first message!

On the basis of your messages, I am thinking now to go to Karijini using the same Campervan I will rent for the Cape Range National Park. It is not a 4WD but it is the dry season and It should be OK. I will go back to Exmouth then.

Do you have an advice for a stop halfway (Mattjamaica?) ?

thanks a lot again, all the best

Sandro

Mjolby, Sweden
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7. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

Hi!

as the lovely staff at the Exmouth Visitors Centre said to us about the road to Karijini from Exmouth when we asked for things to see along the road: "Nothing!"

And right they were. I love the outback but there are really no good stops along the way. I suggest that you drive to Tom Price (via Paraburdoo for sealed roads) and spend the night there. It's more or less a full days drive.

Then leave for Karijini in the morning the next day.

Check the terms and conditions for your camper van, driving on unsealed roads are generally prohibited. It can be VERY costly if something happens to the van on unsealed road.

Hope you will have a fantastic time, Karijini is SO beautiful.

Best regards

Jörgen

Melbourne, Australia
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8. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

I don't get the whole "seeing nothing" bit. Where else are you going to see incredible expanses of the richest reddest desert soils on the planet ? The plant life - rugged and hardy - is fascinating if you take ten minutes to pull up and take a close look.

The creatures you will see as you speed by - the wild goats, Roos, emus, goannas etc but again pulling over and sitting quietly for a while may mean you see tiny mouse sized marsupials like the Dunnart, or smaller lizards etc.

Hmmm right "nothing". Nothing at all.

Mjolby, Sweden
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9. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

PP: That's what they said in Exmouth. Perhaps they wanted us to stay longer, haha :-)

Perhaps I used a poor choice of words, I actually love the outback and the dramatic change of scenery.

But at the same time I can see their point, there wasn't that many "attractions" along the way. Or didn't the good people of the Visitors Center in Exmouth promote the area in the right way? We're going back to WA next year so feel free to share any hidden gems :-)

Best regards

Jörgen

Melbourne, Australia
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10. Re: karijini National Park - how to get there

As I said - pull over and actually look around and find your own gems - isn't that the point of travel ?

No sense speeding past at 100kph and assuming road signs are going to point out "gems" or "attractions".

The attraction is a land that a visitor hasn't been to before that bares no resemblance to their own country.

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