Top 5 Highlights of the Bungle Bungles

The distinctive red domes of the Bungle Bungles | Steve Trudgeon
The distinctive red domes of the Bungle Bungles | Steve Trudgeon
Western Australia’s Kimberley region showcases some of the best and unique sites in the state and in Australia. If you're heading to explore the Purnululu National Park to view the Bungle Bungles, then ensure these 5 highlights are included in your adventure.

Bungle Bungles  

The top site in the Purnululu National Park in the Kimberley region has to be the iconic orange beehive striped Bungle Bungles. These sandstone structures tower up to 300 metres high with orange and black tones and are shaped like a beehive. The Aborigines named the formations Purnululu meaning ‘sandstone’ and these amazing formations remained undiscovered to the rest of the world until 40 years ago. Erosion, growing black algae, orange build-up of manganese and iron staining over the past 350-million years has resulted in the rock clusters we see today.

Cathedral Gorge

Credit: Jamie Gilmore 
Walk through the magnificent natural amphitheatre of the Cathedral Gorge.  Formed as a result of thousands of years of water rushing in during the wet season, the ancient red rock gorge is eerily quiet and you'll marvel at its amazing acoustics, which have inspired musicians to perform here in the past.

On foot to discover the park’s delights  

You will be in awe when entering the Kimberley’s Purnululu National Park by the natural beauty of the ancient red escarpments, the hidden caves and fascinating rock domes. The best way to explore is by walking the various marked trails, which range from easy hour long walks to several days exploring the park. The Echidna Chasm walking track is a highlight in the park. Taking you into a narrow gorge with lush green palms where the light beams into the 200 metre chasm creating ‘the’ photo opportunity. Picaninny Creek winds for 12 kilometres within a high wall gorge down to the Ord River, leading to a lookout over the beehive rock structures and spinifex-covered grasslands. Take a refreshing dip in one of the inviting watering holes such as Frog Hole and the Mini Palms Gorge. View Aboriginal rock art and spot some of the 130 bird species and the native animals such as the nailtail wallaby and short-eared rock wallaby along the trails.

Fly over the Bungle Bungles Range  

See more of the Bungle Bungles Range from up above. With the size of the national park at 240,000 hectares, taking a scenic helicopter flight over it is the best way to fully appreciate its incredible beauty. Back in 1983, a documentary team filming the wonders of Western Australia flew over the range, spotting the striking beehive clusters, previously known only to the local Aboriginal owners. The footage taken on that flight introduced to the unique coloured rock beehive structures to the rest of the world.

Sleep in the park  

Camp in the World Heritage National Park. When the sun sets and the colours change over the landscape, pitch a tent at the designated campsite. Enjoy a yarn and roast marshmallows over the fire, a spectacular location to gaze at the millions of stars. Wake up to the new colours of the day when the sun rises.


All these highlights feature in the 5 day Bungle Bungles Piccaninny Gorge Trek.The best time to experience the magnificent Bungle Bungle is between May and July in the dry season and when it's not too hot. Join the trek and don't forget to bring your camera.  


Comments (2)

Mavis Roberts

My walking/trekking experiences in and around Kings Canyon and in Kakadu were spoiled by buzzing aircraft circling lower and lower for the benefit of those in the aircraft but of no benefit to the environment or those of us who wish to see/feel/experience the special remoteness of these wonderful places.
All sense of wilderness was lost due to tourist aircraft. We respected areas of spiritual importance to indigenous peoples past and present and walked quietly, and where asked not to take photographs we happily complied.
Then to see these aircraft circling above no doubt all taking photographs of sensitive areas to us felt like an insult to the very aspect of the trek/holiday that we were hoping to experience; the silence, the sound only of birds, rustling grasses or our footsteps on the track, perhaps some quiet conversation as we walked together in harmony with each other and our surroundings.
I would like to go to the Kimberley's but be assured that there are walking/camping holidays available where we will not have our experience spoiled by buzzing aircraft. Warm regards, Mave. (Mavis)

4 years ago
Ferenc from UB-Cool

I'd love to walk there and discover the amazing nature from so close! Amazing idea to camp in the park! I think sadly most travelers don't engage in staying so close to the nature there

6 years ago
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