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Wilderness Highway: Broome to Kununurra

Discover a 40,000-year-old culture and its 350-million-year-old secrets

Many of the Kimberley’s highlights can be reached by taking sealed Highway 1 from Broome to Kununurra. Along the way, you’ll meet some friendly Indigenous locals keen to share their culture and country, from Geikie Gorge to the Bungle Bungle Range in World Heritage listed Purnululu National Park. 

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Broome to Fitzroy Crossing

Total distance: 396 kilometres

Take the Great North Eastern Highway (Route 1) east of Broome, for the four-and-a-half-hour journey across the Roebuck Plains to Fitzroy Crossing. Here, in one of the oldest occupied locations in Australia, you’ll discover a major centre of Indigenous art and culture, as well as world-class river fishing on one of the largest rivers on Earth (when in flood).

Fitzroy Crossing to Geikie Gorge

Total distance: 40 kilometres (return)

Just 20 kilometres north of town lies Geikie Gorge National Park. Join the local Bunuba people for an insightful river cruise and cultural tour, exploring the 30-metre deep gorge, fossilised ancient lifeforms and native wildlife, including freshwater crocs. Book your campground accommodation in Fitzroy Crossing.

Fitzroy Crossing to Mimbi caves and Halls Creek

Total distance: 289 kilometres

There are as many as 20 significant cultural sites surrounding the historic town of Fitzroy Crossing, including the Gooniyandi rock art of Mimbi Caves. Pre-book an Indigenous tour and take the 90-minute drive east to this labyrinth of caves, where your guide will reveal its cultural significance and stories. Search for Mimbi Caves tours and book a night or two at Halls Creek’s caravan park.

Halls Creek to Wolfe Creek Crater

Total distance: 302 kilometres (return)

From Halls Creek, you can opt to take the unsealed road south to Wolfe Creek Crater National Park. Measuring 880 metres across, it’s the second largest meteorite crater in the world. You’ll need a full day for this detour, and a 4WD is recommended. But there is a quicker route, by taking a scenic flight from town.

Halls Creek to Purnululu

Total distance: 212 kilometres (one way)

Aboard the scenic flight to Wolfe Creek Crater, you’ll also be whisked north to get an eagle’s eye view of one of the most curious ranges on Earth – the Bungle Bungle Range in World Heritage listed Purnululu National Park. If you prefer to stay at ground level, there are a number of day and extended 4WD tours from Halls Creek that will show you the cavernous Cathedral Gorge and other highlights of this 350-million-year-old marvel.

For self-drivers, the park entrance is a 160-kilometre drive from Halls Creek, with the remaining 52 kilometres on unsealed road (4WD recommended). Camping facilities are available inside and outside the park, as well as glamping options.

Purnululu to Kununurra

Total distance: 252 kilometres (360 kilometres from Halls Creek)

Break the last stretch of your journey with a visit to the Gija Visitor Centre in Warmun, which displays the traditional and contemporary art and craft work of local Aboriginal artists.

On arriving in the east Kimberley hub of Kununurra, meaning ‘big water’, you’ll soon figure out how it earned its Indigenous name when you take a cruise of the Ord River and Lake Argyle – the largest manmade lake in the southern hemisphere.

Stay a night or two in Kununurra to discover the region’s abundant wildlife and some of the best river fishing in the North West.

Take your outback adventure up a gear by making your way back to Broome via the legendary Gibb River Road 4WD track.


Check road conditions before you depart each destination, as roads can be closed during the wet season (November to April).

This route takes you through some isolated outback areas. Make sure you carry plenty of water, food and fuel supplies. Also note that LPG auto gas is not available in all regional areas. In the event of a breakdown, stay with your vehicle – it’s easier to find than an individual.

Wildlife and cattle can create road hazards, particularly around dawn and dusk. Take extra care when overtaking road trains (large trucks towing up to three trailers), they can be over 50 metres long and 2.5 metres wide.


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