Escape to Geraldton, a beach side hideaway where an enchanting blend of adventure and luxury meets endless sunshine and breathtaking scenery. Located about 5 hours from Perth on Western Australia’s Coral Coast, this cozy city, nestled between the Indian Ocean, Moresby Ranges, and the Chapman Valley, offers a variety of attractions that draws thousands of tourists every year.
Known for its Mediterranean type climate, friendly country town atmosphere, pristine beaches, and exciting water activities, Geraldton has proven that it knows how to treat its guests and cheerfully welcomes everyone from thrill seeking nature lovers to swimsuit clad sunbathers.
Appropriately dubbed “Sun City”, Geraldton offers first class accommodations, fresh seafood complemented by fine local wines, cultural sites, and of course, unparalleled water sports including surfing, snorkeling, windsurfing, diving, and fishing. Whether you are exploring the coral reefs, visiting a winery, or taking a tour of the famed Abrolhos Islands, this charming, port city has something to satisfy the vacation needs of every visitor.
Geraldton’s ideal wind and water conditions has made it an internationally renowned windsurfing location. In fact, it is often referred to as Australia’s windsurfing capital and attracts thousands of windsurfers from all over the world for both recreational vacations and prestigious competitions.
Also regarded as a Mecca for adventure water sports enthusiasts, the white sandy beaches and strong swells and waves make Geraldton a perfect location for a large variety of water activities.
Visit Back Beach, Coronation Beach, or Flat Rock and experience some of the best surfing, windsurfing, kite surfing, or para sailing.
For a more family oriented environment, head over to Pages Beach where the calm ocean waters and nearby playground will please children of every age. From here, you can walk to the Point Moore lighthouse, whose red and white stripes have been standing guard since 1878. Although not open to the public, you can still wander around its base and learn about its history by reading the informative mounted plaque.
Of course, no trip to Geraldton would be complete without a visit to the Abrolhos Islands. This archipelago of 122 islands is a short boat ride from shore and is well worth the journey. Experience world renowned fishing, dive among the beautiful coral reefs and amazing marine life, enjoy some leisurely snorkeling, be fascinated by the colonies of sea birds, or try to catch a glimpse of sea lions, dolphins, and whales. Guided tours can be arranged and the islands offer activities for every age group and preference.
Art, Culture, and History:
While Geraldton is most recognized for its outdoor activities, it also has a rich history and offers a unique and distinct culture. On your way into the city, stop at the Greenbough Pioneer Museum and familiarize yourself with the fascinating history and pioneer families of the area. You may also like to take the time to visit the Greenbough Historic Settlement.
Browse through the Geraldton Regional Art Gallery or explore shops that display the work of local artisans. Stop by the HMAS Sydney II Memorial, a tribute to sailors who lost their lives on this ship in World War II. If you have the time, take the 30 minute guided tour and view the wall of remembrance that honors the names of those who sacrificed their lives for the cause of freedom.
For the true history buff, visit the Western Australia Museum Geraldton, which focuses on the natural and cultural history of this area, with an entire section dedicated to the legendary shipwrecks that have dominated local tradition and folklore.
If you love the beauty and intricacies of architecture, then a visit to St. Francis Xavier Cathedral should definitely be added to your itinerary. Built primarily in Byzantine style, this magnificent structure actually contains inspirations from other churches around the world and boasts Romanesque columns, spectacular arches, and an orange and grey striped color scheme.
Bask in the unique Maritime atmosphere experienced at the Batavia coast Marina where you can stroll along the boardwalk, stopping at quaint coffee shops, cozy restaurants, or the Midwest Museum. Spend an afternoon at Geraldton Port and watch ships delivering their cargo of iron ore. Visit Fisherman’s Wharf and see the activity of the busy fishing and seafood industry, and maybe even take some time to cast your own line.
Tour Chapman Valley or Ego Creek Vineyard or peruse the local arts and crafts at the Old Geraldton Gaol Craft Centre.
And of course, the Batavia Shipwreck is a must-see. You can explore this historic dive site that has been a staple part of Australia’s Maritime folklore for generations, and since the water is safe and the tours are guided, you don’t even have to be an experienced diver to enjoy this amazing opportunity.
Geraldton offers some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world. Take a drive through the Chapman Valley with its landscape painted in colorful wildflowers and dotted with colonial buildings. Walk along the Chapman trail and enjoy the antics of native wildlife.
Explore the rugged gorges and cliffs of Kalbarri, or take a river cruise to admire the stunning scenery. Make sure you snap a few pictures of the leaning trees near Greenbough, or head over to Monkey Mia to take in some dolphin watching.
Whether you are sunbathing on the beaches, surfing in the crystal clear waters, hiking through the rugged landscape, or exploring historical sites, you will be treated to spectacular views and awe-inspiring vistas.
You can plan an amazing Geraldton getaway, no matter what your budget or vacation needs. This charming city offers everything from luxury resorts and hotels, to bed and breakfasts, cottages, apartments, holiday houses, backpacker accommodation and campgrounds (or as they are known in Australia caravan parks) for campers. With so many options, you can take your sweetheart to a romantic hideaway, relax in your own seaside retreat, or pack up the family for a fun-filled camping adventure.
So, grab your surfboard, swim suit, and suntan lotion and prepare for an exciting and unforgettable experience in spectacular Geraldton, Australia.