Western Australia Islands
Western Australia Islands are made up of several large groups of small islands, which line the coastline. Only a few are accessible for tourists, although offer fabulous landscape scenery and plenty of wildlife.
Along the South West Coast of Western Australia just off of Esperance are a group of about 100 Islands. There is plenty of wildlife on the islands including Fur Seals, Penguins and Water Birds. From Esperance you can join a trip out to Woody Island, which offers basic camping facilities.
Just west of Perth is the popular Rottnest Island which is home to the pretty Quokka. Also west of Perth are Garden Island, Penguin Island and Seal Island, with the later two part of the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park. You can join a cruise out to the fairy penguin colony on Penguin Island from Rockingham, (Although the penguins are only there between October to May).
Further north off of the Central West coast of Western Australia you will find the Houtman Abrolhos Islands which are made up of about 100 tiny islands. The birdlife on these islands is spectacular and the Acropora family Coral which lies under the water is out of this world. Although you can't stay on the islands, there are day trips available. If you do head out to the islands it is definitely worth going diving as the coral is really pretty.
There have also been several ship wrecks off of the islands, due to the vessels hitting the coral. These include the Batavia in 1629 and the Zeewijk in 1727, with the Vergulde Draeck wrecked further south in 1656 and the Zuytdorp wrecked further north in 1712.
Further north off of the Coral Coast are the pretty Montebello Islands stretching from Onslow to Karratha. The Montebello Group was named in 1801 by the French explorer Baudin, and is made up of more than 100 limestone islands. Several of the islands in this area include Barrow Island, Depuch Island, Direction Island, Dolphin Island, Enderby Island, Hermite Island, Legendre Island, Muiron Island, Rosemary Island, Tent Island and Thevenard Island. Some of these islands belong to the Montebello Islands, while others belong to the Muiron Islands and the Dampier Archipelago. The Dampier Archipelago is very popular amongst Game Fishermen and hosts the large Dampier Classic Fishing Competition in August.
Although both the Golden Bandicoot and Hare-Wallaby has become extinct from the islands, there is still plenty of flora and fauna for you to see including many seabirds, turtles and the Aprasia Rostrata (which is a legless lizard). There are dive trips available from the Coral Coast out to the Muiron Islands where you are likely to see Green Turtles, Hawsbill Turtles, and Loggerhead Turtles. There are also exclusive resorts on both Direction Island and Thevenard Island, which are a popular holiday destination amongst Sports Fishermen.
Just off of the North Coast of Western Australia, and the Kimberley more Islands can be found. Several Islands include Adele Island, Augustus Island, Bigge Island, Cockatoo Island and the Heywood Islands. You can travel to Cockatoo Island from Derby, where there is the Cockatoo island Resort. Further west, a fair distance from the Western Australia coastline, you will also find Christmas Island and the Cocos Islands. Both islands are beautiful and have a strong Asian feel to them, and although fairly expensive to visit are well worth it.
Islands Gallery (Visitor Photographs)