Wild coastline and a few shipwrecks shouldn’t scare you away from Point Quobba, as this rugged part of the West Australian coastline is sure to leave a lasting impression.
Read on to discover the best things to do and see in Point Quobba.
Situated along the treacherous Blowhole Coast, Point Quobba is a secluded haven that offers respite from the untameable seas that churn around it. Protected by a reef and a small island that is accessible during low tide, Point Quobba is conveniently close to many of the local attractions and landmarks, not to mention it is surrounded by some of Australia’s most captivating scenery. Outdoor enthusiasts will love the fishing, four wheel driving and surfing that is on offer; while campers will enjoy the pared back, but welcoming facilities. It may seem like a wild and unforgiving landscape, but once you explore the area it’s hard not to fall under its spell.
The area of Point Quobba and the Blowhole Coast in particular is a renowned fishing spot, but be warned, it’s not for the inexperienced! While the lure of giant snapper, barracuda, coral trout and trevally is hard to resist for many, the rocky cliffs, high winds and unpredictable seas make for some trying conditions. Precariously poised on cliff faces, fishermen use special, gas-filled balloons attached to their line to carry them offshore in the wind, away from the rocks below. This is no place for the faint-hearted, though. Life buoys on the cliffs, a warning sign about king waves that rise up, seemingly out of nowhere, and further cautionary advice quoting a figure of 30 deaths (mostly fishermen) from these rocks, are all visible reminders of the dangers for those who are foolhardy, careless, over-enthusiastic or just plain unlucky.
Luckily, Point Quobba itself is a sheltered, pristine beach that is more than ideal for a spot of (relaxed) fishing, snorkelling or swimming, with the crystal-clear waters brimming with marine life and activity. Further up the coast at Red Bluff, the surf conditions are world class, and draw visitors from across the country. Surfers camp along the beach for days on end to catch the legendary waves, and with the Bluff Barrel reef break conveniently located just offshore, those infamous waves aren’t hard to come by.
The rough seas of the Blowhole Coast are the final, watery resting place of the HMAS Sydney, also Australia’s worst maritime loss. The disaster occurred during WWII, when the HMAS Sydney encountered the German Raider HSK Kormoran out at sea, with a battle ensuing. Mystery and tragedy followed, with not a single member of the 645 strong officers and crew of the HMAS Sydney ever being recovered, despite 316 members of the German Raider surviving. A simple, poignant memorial can be found at High Rock on Quobba Station, with the plaque detailing facts of the doomed conflict.
The wreck of the Korean Star, which was hit with no warning by Cyclone Herbie in 1988 and blown on to the rocks, is now a popular wreckage site along the Blowhole Coast. Continually pounded by the waves, the remains of the Korean Star are progressively being claimed by the sea and, apart from a small pile of scrap metal on the rocks, there is now little left to see of this once huge bulk carrier. A cliff-top lookout gives a good view of the Cape Cuvier Jetty and the Korean Star wreck site. There is also a 4WD access track, carved down the nearby hillside, which allows visitors to experience a close encounter with what is left of the wreck.
Erupting in spectacular fashion for hundreds of years, the blowholes have become an iconic and extremely popular attraction for the region. The coastline surrounding Point Quobba has been gauged and scoured by the waves, shaping rugged cliffs, caves, overhangs and crevices over millions of years. With awesome ferocity, waves pound into rock faces and are funnelled into gaping passages and rock holes forcing plumes of spray in powerful jets of water spurting high in the air. It is an easy 1km walk from Point Quobba to view the blowholes, and with sprays sometimes reaching over 20m into the sky, the blowholes are a truly breathtaking natural phenomenon.
The semi-arid climate in Point Quobba means that heavy or prolonged periods of rainfall are usually quite rare, and conditions are mostly warm and pleasant. Daily temperatures range between 22°C and 32°C during the day, and don’t drop much lower during the night.
The area of Point Quobba is familiar with cyclones however, and it’s worthwhile to be aware of weather conditions changing quickly, especially during February to March, which is high season for cyclones. Cyclones bring damaging winds, storm surges and heavy downpours, and it pays to be prepared.
Point Quobba is located along the West Australian coastline, only 75km north of Carnarvon.
The best route to Point Quobba and the Blowhole Coast is via Carnarvon, travelling for 24km north via the North West Coastal Highway, before turning west on a sealed road for the rest of the 50km to the coast.
All roads that continue north onto Gnaraloo Station and Red Bluff are unsealed.
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