The Indian Ocean Drive: A Road Trip Itinerary from Perth to Kalbarri

Aerial view of Hutt Lagoon, near Port Gregory

Discover a kaleidoscope route where yellow moonscapes, ancient red gorges and wildflower blooms meet Indian Ocean blues.

There’s nothing more calming for the city minds like a short escape to the straight country road and getting back to nature in its purest and simplest states. Driving routes in Western Australia (WA) features some of Australia’s most iconic landscape, from the quiet hums of untouched beaches to the vast rhythmic stretches of gorges and wildflower fields. Perfect for those seeking the simplest pleasures in life and a dash of adventure.

Afraid of frolicking around in the wild for too long? Fret not! The coastal roads and outback has bountiful of accommodations ranging from station stays to glamping and eco cabins. These drives were made to have a rewarding reconnection with nature, at your own design. Whichever way you prefer, the Indian Ocean Drive will leave you feeling breathless and rejuvenated by the end of your journey.

Hutt Lagoon, near Port Gregory
Aerial view of Hutt Lagoon, near Port Gregory

Indian Ocean Drive and Kalbarri

Duration: 5 to 7 days

Vehicle: 2WD

Start-End: Perth-Perth

Best time: All year round (wildflowers July to October)

Embark along the road from Perth where you’ll pass the lunar landscape of the Pinnacles, and a ribbon of coastal towns between Jurien Bay and Geraldton. Soak up the fairy-tale sight of the bubblegum pink hues of Hutt Lagoon and feel playful in an outback coastal playground across the prehistoric land of the Kalbarri National Park.

  • Leg 1: Perth to Cervantes (200 km)

    • Explore one of the most curious natural landscapes on Earth in the Pinnacles Desert, Nambung National Park. Enjoy the windswept sensation drive or venture through the trail spanning thousands of limestones spires that had graced this land over millions of years ago.
    • Quietly marvel at the stromatolites and thrombolites which are some of the oldest living fossils on Earth at Lake Thetis.

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  • Leg 2: Cervantes to Jurien Bay and Dongara (158km)

    • Enjoy the dazzling view of springtime blooms where more than 900 wildflower species are scattered along the vast lands in Lesueur National Park.
    • For those with a love towards wildlife, jump abroad a Jurien Bay sea lion charter ride to meet some of Australia’s rarest and most playful marine life.
    • Adrenaline junkies seeking for some action and adventure can instead opt for a chance to skydive out of the blue skies and onto the white sandy beaches of Jurien Bay.

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  • Leg 3: Dongara to Geraldton (66km)

    • Join in for the fun or relish the scene of pros catching the perfect wind and wave conditions at Geraldton, Australia’s windsurfing capital.
    • Explore the 122 coral fringed islands of Abrolhos, which host some of WA’s most unique marine forms and is also rumoured to be one of the world’s best fishing spots. Take a dive, snorkel or even a scenic flight over the stunning abstract of green and blues surrounding the Abrolhos Islands.

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  • Leg 4: Geraldton to Kalbarri (155km)

    • Journey back in time and explore the prehistoric sights of the 400-million-year-old river gorges, coastal rock formations and magnificent displays in Kalbarri National park.
    • Adventurous nature seekers can choose from a wide variety of activities, such as river cruising, fishing, kayaking, abseiling, rock climbing and even horse riding to sightsee the ultimate outback coast playground. Remember to take a peek through the iconic Nature’s Window. A must-have for every Instagram users!
    • Speaking of Instagrammable places, do not forget to visit the bubblegum pink waters of Hutt Lagoon and get your postcard-perfect shot!

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Natures Window in Kalbarri National Park (Picture Credit: Tourism Western Australia)

Leg 5: Kalbarri to Perth (589km)
For those visiting between July and October, take a detour inland to the wildflower hotspots of Mullewa, Three Springs and Carnamah. The picturesque view is absolutely mesmerizing and definitely worth the drive!

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Well, what are you waiting for? Start the road trip of a lifetime and get ready to experience the Great Indian Ocean like you’ve never before!

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