Australia's Coral Coast Holidays

The Coral Coast is home to some of Australia’s best diving and snorkelling hot spots.

This side of Australia is crammed with pristine beaches that have somehow slipped under the tourist radar. Like everywhere in this part of WA, it might take longer to get to its silky shore but you’re guaranteed to get your miles’ worth. This is the home of the Great Barrier Reef’s rival: Ningaloo reef. Fewer people have heard of it, but as a fringing reef (one that grows near the coastline), its marine life is even more accessible than the Great Barrier’s.

Go snorkelling right off the beach to see psychedelic emperor angelfish and paint splatter parrotfish; the shallow waters mean it’s easy for even timid swimmers to see the likes of green turtles and leopard shark that live further out. The beaches are in their own league – visit Shark Bay’s Shell Beach, which is scattered with millions of tiny white shells, or Monkey Mia, a dolphin-friendly hangout.

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Australia's Coral Coast Hotels

Our recommendations for the best places to stay in Australia's Coral Coast

Ningaloo Reef Resort, Coral Bay

Prime location on a heavenly stretch of beach

RAC Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort

The only place in Australia visited by dolphins daily

Sal Salis, Cape Range National Park

Remote luxury bush camp

Get to know Australia's Coral Coast and those important practicalities when planning your perfect holiday.


GMT +8 hours; Western Australia does not observe daylight savings time so is 7 hours ahead of British Summer Time.


Australian Dollar


Perth: 17 hours non-stop or 20 hours indirect; Perth to Geraldton 1 hour


Majority Christian


Australia has no official language but the majority of people speak English as their first language. Approximately 250 indigenous Australia languages are spoken.

Where is Australia’s Coral Coast? The Coral Coast is located in the state of Western Australia. The coastline stretches between the towns of Cervantes and Exmouth and whilst it makes for an incredible road trip, if time is short there are connecting flights from the state capital Perth to the airports at Geraldton, Learmonth (serving Exmouth), Carnarvon and Shark Bay (for Monkey Mia).

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Cervantes The seaside town Cervantes is the first stop on the Coral Coast. It’s an hour and a half’s drive from Perth and has near-empty white sand beaches, fresh lobster and the brilliant Pinnacles half an hour away, a geological site of quirky rocks in the sand.

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Geraldton Stop between Cervantes and Kalbarri at Geraldton for hip cafés, one of Western Australia’s best museums on local history and islands surrounded by dolphins and sea lions. Nearby Coalseam Conservation Park is one of the best places to see some of the brilliant natural displays that pop up during the wildflower season, which runs from June and July and lasts around six months around the state.

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Kalbarri, Shark Bay & Monkey Mia Kalbarri and Shark Bay are two of the most popular stops in the Coral Coast. In the Shark Bay World Heritage Area, head to the clifftop lookout at Eagle Bluff and view the Hamelin Pool stromatolites. Go hiking or canoeing in Kalbarri National Park and walk to vantage points like Natural Bridge where you could be lucky enough to spot humpback whales between June and November or drive south to see the sherbet pink Hutt Lagoon. At Monkey Mia, friendly bottlenose dolphins visit the shoreline almost daily.

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Coral Bay & Ningaloo Reef The small town of Coral Bay is the gateway to the beautiful protected marine site of Ningaloo Reef. This one of the few places on earth where you can walk straight from the shoreline to the reef. The fringing reef is a 160-mile barrier protecting a shallow lagoon of clear tropical waters, home to more than 200 species of coral and over 500 types of fish, as well as whale sharks, manta rays and turtles. Snorkel in the clear waters, or swim with majestic whale sharks. On land, visit Cape Range National Park and relax on the white sands at Turquoise Bay.

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Australia's Coral Coast Weather

Mar - Oct