1. Travel

Karijini National Park

Spectacular Gorges and Desert Ranges

By

Hamersley Range, Karijini national park

Hamersley Range in Karijini national park

Copyright Tourism Western Australia

One of Australia's largest national parks, Karijini (formerly Hamersley Range) National Park is arguably one of the most spectacular in Australia and a definite drawcard for Nature and adventure lovers.

It is an area of desert and rugged land centred on the Hamersley Range in the Outback region of Western Australia. In the indigenous Banyjima language, Hamersley Range is known by the Aboriginal inhabitants as Karijini.

Karijini National Park is famous for its sheer gorges (such as Four Gorges in the Hamersley Range), waterfalls, swimming holes, Millstream palms, dragonflies, flying foxes.

Wildlife habitat

Karijini National Park is home to a variety of birds, red kangaroos and euros, rock wallabies, echidnas, several bat species, geckos, goannas, dragons, legless lizards, pythons and other snakes.

You will find huge termite mounds dotting the landscape and rock piles of the rare pebble mound mouse in spinifex country.

Cliffs and chasms

In the park's north, small creeks which are mostly dry during the year carve sheer chasms up to 100 metres deep. These are Karijini's famously spectacular (but extremely dangerous for the foolhardy) gorges. The sheer richly-colored cliffs change into steep slopes of loose rock downstream. Guided walks are recommended.

Creek water collects into swimming holes and placid pools at the bottom of the chasms.

Outback destination

Karijini National Park comprises a unique Outback destination which draws visitors to its natural attractions despite the national park's remoteness and isolation.

Quite distant from towns and major cities, overnight camping is recommended, particularly for early-morning sightings of wildlife.

When to go

Late autumn, winter and early spring are the preferred seasons for visiting Karijini National Park in Outback Western Australia. Situated just north of the Tropic of Capricorn, the park's climate is described as tropical semi-desert with a highly variable, mainly summer rainfall of 250–350 millimetres, often associated with thunderstorms and cyclones, and accompanied by temperatures frequently topping 40 degrees Celsius.

The nights can be extremely cold, so attire for weather extremes is recommended.

How far is it?

Karijini National Park is 310 kilometres from the Western Australia town of Roebourne on the North West Coastal Highway. It is 1400 kilometres from the state capital, Perth. Estimated travel times by road are five to six hours from Roebourne and three to four days from Perth.

Related Video
Tour Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
  1. About.com
  2. Travel
  3. Australia Travel
  4. Visiting Australia
  5. Alphabetical Index
  6. Hahndorf to Hyde Park
  7. Karijini National Park, Western Australia: Spectacular Gorges, Desert Ranges

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.