Following are answers to some frequently asked questions, however, we are always pleased to answer your questions directly. Please feel free to contact us on 1800 450 850 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We update this page from time to time or provide further information via our blog section.
Why don't you take online credit card bookings?
We are not an online booking site; we are real people and offer a personalised booking service! We prefer to protect information such as our clients' credit card details. The most secure way to provide credit card information is by completion and return of our confirmation form or by telephone (we are happy to call you at a convenient time to you).
When is the best time to travel in the Kimberley & Pilbara?
The weather and climate in the Kimberley and Pilbara regions of Australia's North West varies dramatically. Temperatures range from under 5°C to over 40°C and the weather pattern creates two very distinct seasons.
Winter Season - May to late October: Winter is the most popular time to visit the Kimberley and Pilbara regions of Australia’s North West. Daytime temperatures range from 20°C to 35°C. On the coast nights are cooler with fresh breezes, while inland the wind off the desert can see temperatures plummet to near freezing.
Summer Season - Late October to April: In summer there are fewer crowds, the days can be hot and humid and the nights are balmy. While it is known as the 'wet season' in the Kimberley and Pilbara regions, the rain usually falls in heavy, short downpours in the late afternoon and evenings. Expect great lightning shows, spectacular sunsets and plenty of wildlife. Many local tours operate year-round, but attractions outside of the townsites, such as gorges, cannot be accessed due to closed roads and local flooding.
The Gibb River Road and other access roads, National Parks, Conservation Parks, are closed by the relevant authorities generally from December to early April. These closures are due to flooding, extreme heat & humidity, risk of localised thunderstorms and flash flooding and general public safety. Travel other than along the main highways is not possible during the 'wet' season. Accommodation along the Gibb River and Kalumburu Roads is closed from October to April/May, Traversing on closed roads attract fines! Please obey all signage.
Is there mobile phone coverage along the Gibb River Road?
The short answer is very little. There are Optus towers at El Questro Station, Emma Gorge Resort, Home Valley Station, Ellenbrae Station & Imintji Roadhouse.
If you are on a guided tour, the guides carry satellite phones in case of an emergency. If you are embarking on a self-drive itinerary, there are Telstra payphones at most accommodation stops enroute, however, if you need to be contacted whilst travelling, you may wish to consider hiring a satellite phone before you leave home. Telstra mobile is available along most of the Great Northern Highway with some black spots.
There is Telstra mobile phone coverage in the 5 main Kimberley townsites. Optus is also available in Broome, Derby, Wyndham & Kununurra and Vodaphone available in Broome and Kununurra.
What level of fitness is required to travel in the Kimberley, Pilbara & Top End?
All tours and travel in the Kimberley require a certain level of fitness of the participants as you will/may be hiking over rocky and undulating terrain and swimming in waterfalls in all areas of northern Australia, so you must be reasonably fit to enjoy these activities. Medical assistance is generally not close by if you have the misfortune to experience any problems.
What walking shoes are appropriate?
We recommend footwear that is going to be comfortable for walking over rough terrain and rocky ground - proper trek boots are ideal. When visiting areas such as Tunnel Creek in the Kimberley, you will get wet feet, so we suggest a pair of shoes you don’t mind getting wet - fitted sandals or old runners are ideal. Thongs are not recommended for anything other than visiting the pool or beach!
Travelling with children.
Our self-drive itineraries can be adapted to suit families as most accommodation caters for families. Some guided tour operators have age restrictions for children as they have deemed their tour not suitable or safe for some younger travellers. Age restrictions differ but we are always happy to check with individual tour operators if you wish to travel with children.
Where can I buy fuel and use EFTPOS along the Gibb River Road?
Obviously due to the remoteness, there are limited places where you can purchase fuel and use EFTPOS along the Gibb River Road. For $8.00 (incl postage) we can send you a copy of the "Gibb River Road Guide" that outlines where these services (and others) are available. Please contact us by phone, email or through our contacts page if you would wish to purchase a copy.
Travellers to the Kimberley and Pilbara need to be aware that alcohol purchasing restrictions are in force and those restrictions vary from town to town. If you wish to purchase alcohol on your travels, we recommend that you seek information locally as to what restrictions may apply.
Australia's North West has some of the largest tidal ranges in the world. Tidal water can move very quickly, and often catches people unaware. If you are undertaking any activity by the water, check the local tide charts - generally available at service stations, accommodation, local newspapers, newsagents and visitor information centres.
There are two main species of crocodiles; the estuarine or saltwater crocodile (known as ‘salties’) and the Johnson freshwater crocodile (known as ‘freshies’). Salties are extremely territorial animals, they are considered to be the most dangerous and can grow up to seven metres in length. However, all crocodiles are potentially dangerous. Always observe warning signs and if in doubt, don’t swim, canoe or use small boats in estuaries, tidal rivers and deep pools.
What arrangements can be made for my special dietary needs?
Most tour operators and accommodation (where meals or snacks are provided) can cater for specific dietary needs, such as gluten-free, diabetic, vegetarian etc. Please advise us at the time of booking so that we can advise the relevant operators.
Road Safety tips.
Many cattle stations are unfenced and it is not uncommon to encounter wandering stock and wildlife. Serious accidents can occur due to collisions with kangaroos, cattle and various other animals and birds. If possible, avoid driving at dawn and dusk as these are the most dangerous times. Hire car companies in the Kimberley void insurance coverage on hire vehicles that are damaged when driven between dusk and dawn outside of the townsites.
Road trains are a unique part of travelling in Australia’s North West. The sheer size of these massive vehicles can be over whelming, some are more than 50 metres in length. Take care when overtaking road trains and only do so when you can clearly see the road ahead. Be aware that dust and stones can be kicked up on unsealed roads, obscuring vision and potentially damaging your vehicle. For further information on sharing the road with trucks go to Main Road Western Australia website: www.mainroads.wa.gov.au.
We will include road condition reports for the Kimberley on our Facebook page and Twitter from time to time when road conditions change or there are hazards drivers should be aware of.