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Wild Life Western Australia
Litchfield National ParkClick thumbnail to view full-size
The East/West Dilemma, Where to go in Australia
When backpacking through Australia, many travelers are faced with the great dilemma of having to choose a particular region to explore within this huge country of copious natural beauty.
Unless one has a tremendous amount of time, it is almost impossible to see it all, and with a time-limit variable, travelers have to look at the options and ponder on which will be the selected area to visit:
Is it the state of New South Wales with its famous beaches, exiting cosmopolitan cities and Australia´s most iconic symbols?.... Is it the Northern Territory with its celebrated national parks and Australia´s biggest and most admired rock?...... Is it Queensland with its exuberant rain forest and the largest reef in the world?...... Is it South Australia with its wineries and rich produce?...... Is it the west with its unspoiled beaches?.....
Many times, travelers, working-holiday-visa-holders and backpackers are obliged to choose between the east and the west part of the country; that´s the reason why I decided to create this article, talk about the pros and cons of Western Australia and show a brief photo gallery with pictures I took during my personal travesty through the west, from Litchfield National Park (which is still in the north part of the Northern Territory State of Australia) all the way down to Esperance.
Exotic Flowers of Western Australia
Cape Range National Park, Central-Western AustraliaClick thumbnail to view full-size
Western Australia BeachesClick thumbnail to view full-size
Western Australia: Pros and Cons
First and foremost, Western Australia is a very desolate flat land when compared to the East part of the country (meaning Queensland and New South Whales). This sounds like a very dull, unappealing description, but it can be a very good quality depending on the kind of travel experiences you are inclined to.
Western Australia has a much lower population than the East and it will never have the kind of crowds that are present there. Nevertheless, it can also feel quite lonely and, if you enjoy contact with local people and other tourists, you might miss that in the West.
On the other hand, Western Australia is cleaner, quieter and has more virgin areas than the East. You can ride for miles and miles without meeting anyone.
Western Australia has beautiful pristine beaches that you can have almost only for yourself. The colors of the ocean are amazing and the cleanliness of the beaches outstanding. There is, generally speaking, no tropical aspect to the beaches: no palm trees, actually no trees whatsoever along the beaches, only shrub-like-vegetation; this characteristic applies to the main western part of Australia and tends to change a bit in the northern and southern tip of West Australia, where the coastline gets a bit more interesting with richer and greener vegetation, and irregular landscape along the beaches.
Western Australia has great places for camping lovers and is such a wild expansion of inhabited land that you can camp almost anywhere, if you are a nature lover and a wilderness enthusiast this is the perfect place to be. The North part of Western Australia is particularly nice in this regard because of its heavy population of Boab Trees, one of the most unusual, charming and characteristic pieces of fauna in the upper region of Western Australia.
Boab Tree / Camping Site in the Wilderness, North-Western Australia
Cable Beach, Broome, Western AustraliaClick thumbnail to view full-size
Travel Guides Australia
Perth, Western Australia
Western Australia: Recommendations
Broome and North-Western Australia
If you are interested in visiting Broome, I would probably suggest sticking to North Australia. Make a travel plan through the Northern Territory and visit places such as Cape Don, Melville Island, Litchfield or Kakadu National Park, and Katherine Gorge within the beautiful Nitmiluk National Park; then, make Broome a detour form this northern adventure.
Nevertheless, in my opinion, Broome is actually overrated and you can find much better beaches and ocean-related-environments within the same Northern Territory, such as the one described in the following article:
Another good idea is to visit the Kimberley region of Western Australia and make Broome your entry point to this secluded and some say gorgeous area of North-Western Australia (unfortunately, I didn´t get the chance to go there).
Western Australia is enormous, much bigger than you can possibly imagine while you enthusiastically and romantically plan your travel itinerary; drives between stops are much longer than desirable and frankly, the stretch between Broome and Perth is a huge stretch to drive and has little points of interest (Carnarvon, Kalbarri and Geraldton are pretty ordinary western towns). Even if Coral Bay and the shores of Cape Range National Park are beautiful (for example Turquoise Bay), Exmouth and the much fused about Monkey Mia are not worth the long drive and big expense.
In contrast, I highly recommend the south part of Western Australia; to be more specific, the stretch that goes from Perth to Esperance. This region of the state is much greener and richer in every sense. It is visually more attractive, it has interesting lush and fertile natural environments, which include national parks and preserved areas, it has wineries and lovely harvested countryside, it has beautiful beaches as well, plus, it has pleasant towns and cities to stop for a day or two.
Margaret Riverand its surrounding area is especially nice and charming.
Highway SceneryClick thumbnail to view full-size
Western Australia: Traveling by Land
If you are traveling by car/bus, it is important you know that highway stretches between stops are HUGE and can get quite boring; even though there are beautiful sceneries, the landscape remains just about the same for hundreds and hundreds of miles: a vast territory of almost flat land, hills and mountains are almost non-existent.
One terrible problem of Western Australia is the massive amount of flies populating its central part. They tend to appear out of nowhere in impressive numbers and are extremely annoying. They are so fearless and impertinent that they almost creep into your mouth when you open it to speak! Fortunately, this problem is localized and isn´t present in most of the places I visited. To stay away from the fly plague, avoid massive wilderness spots too far away from civilization. Areas along the coast generally don´t have flies, areas along the highway are heavy fly spots.
Map of Australia with Points of Reference in the West
Western Australia Popularity Meter
Which part of Western Australia would you rather go to?
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