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Amazing snorkelling and wildlife
A long drive from anywhere.
In a nutshell
Sunny and colourful!
The Ningaloo reef is accessible from many beaches in The Cape Range National Park, 40-50 mins drive south of Exmouth.
There is a small fee to enter the park.
It's a fringing reef which means it is very close to the shore, at The Oyster Stacks and South Mandu Beach it is so close that you can walk to the edge of the reef at low tide.
You should not snorkel at low tide as it is easy to damage the reef.
Fins are not really necessary if you don't want to go our far, but you will need reef shoes to protect your feet as the broken bits of coral are sharp.
At Turquoise Bay, the reef is about 30 metres off shore, still very easy even if you are not a strong swimmer. Again, fins are not really necessary if you don't want to go our far, but you will need reef shoes to protect your feet as the broken bits of coral are sharp.
This beach is suitable for snorkelling at high and low tide.
At Coral Bay the reef is about 50 metres offshore, but many large fish come into the lagoon which is very shallow.
Glass bottomed boats go out from here for those who do not want to swim/snorkel. Departure times vary according to the tide. Book in advance as they are often full.
The reef here is quite unspoiled, but as with all reefs extremely fragile.
Please observe some basic precautions to protect the reef.
1. Don't stand on the corals, as well as the possibility of cutting yourself, it damages them.
2. Take all your rubbish home with you, and be especially careful with plastic bags. To a turtle, a floating bag looks like the jellyfish they feed on, but if they swallow them they die.
3. It is illegal to remove anything from the beach in the park. The coral and shells are extremely beautiful, but you cannot take them home with you. Even dead coral and empty shells are essential to maintain the ecological balance.
Other beaches are popular for fishing, both from the beach and off shore. Many off-shore fishing trips are available with all equipment provided.
Equipment: Snorkleling equipment is available for hire at Coral Bay, but if you want to go more than once or twice you might as well buy your own.
The camping and fishing shop in Exmouth town center has a large selection of camping and fishing equipment.
Bait and some equipment is available in Coral Bay
Updated May 28, 2008