Home' Traveller : Scoop Traveller WA 021 Contents 62 Scoop Traveller January - June 2012
scoop.com.au Explore WA
A rugged fantasyland of
corals, fish, charismatic marine
mammals and great surf breaks
Craggy, windswept and without a coconut
palm in sight, for underwater lovers these
islands are an absolute paradise, alive with
tropical fish and exquisite corals. Consisting
of 122 isles and shallow and deep-shelf reef-
surrounded atolls, this archipelago lies in
the southward-flowing Leeuwin Current,
approximately 60km west of Geraldton. The
islands are clustered into three main groups:
Wallabi, Easter and Pelsaert.
Managed by the Department of Fisheries,
some islands are home to a community of
fishermen and their families from March to
June, working the lucrative rock lobster and
black pearl industry.
There is no accommodation available on
the islands, and the only ways for tourists to
get to them are by small plane charter from
Geraldton, by fishing charter or by invitation
from a resident fisherman. Unfortunately the
mining dollar is stronger than the tourism
dollar, and luxury boat charters to the islands
are now practically non-existent. Providing
there is a minimum of two passengers, daily
flights are available for overflying, and full or
half-day packages. The flight time direct to
East Wallabi is 35 minutes. By fast boat, it takes
around two hours.
July to November Humpback whales are
commonly seen, while dolphins and seals
reside at the Abrolhos year-round.
Spring/summer Seabird breeding season,
when the sky fills with the colour and sound
of these largely ground-nesting birds.
Best time to go
Coordinates: 28°43’32”S 113°47’15”E
The waters of the Abrolhos teem with life
(Photography Geraldton Air Charter).
Big Rat and Little Rat islands
in the Abrolhos archipelago
(Photography Karl Monaghan).
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