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Coral Bay, Ningaloo
Attractions and Activities
The best thing about Coral Bay is that it has such perfect weather and stunningly beautiful scenery that even simply wandering around town, lazing in the sun and splashing around in the shallows of the town beach makes me feel infinitely happy and relaxed.
The wild life in the area is so plentiful that you don't have to try very hard to see it. The fish and coral of the Ningaloo Reef are an effortless swim less than 100 metres from the shoreline of the town beach, and if you take a walk along the coast north or south from town you're bound to see something of interest, whether it's one of the huge perentie lizards, a sea turtle close to the shoreline, spangled emporer in the shallows or the reef shark nursery at Skeleton Beach.
A lady I used to work with has been going to Coral Bay every April for the last twenty years, and all she ever does there is lie on the beach, go for a swim and read her book ... and she loves it! I couldn't believe it when I found out she doesn't even go snorkeling, and never accompanies the rest of her family on their fishing trips on the boat. But each to their own.
The beauty of Coral Bay is that you can do as much or as little as you want. Adventurous types and lazy sunbakers will both be happy. There's easily enough action and adventure to fill two weeks or more, but it's paradise enough to just lie in the sun for two weeks.
On this page:
- The Number One Coral Bay Attraction
- Unforgettable Coral Bay Experiences
- Coral Bay Tours and Activities
- Cheap and Free Things to Do Within Walking Distance of Town
The Number one Attraction at Coral Bay: Ningaloo Reef
The main attraction of Coral Bay is the Ningaloo Reef with all its coral and fish and other marine life including the whale sharks, turtles and manta rays.
It's this unique and pristine ecosystem that blesses us with the incredible fishing, snorkelling, diving and wildlife encounters that we can enjoy when we spend our holidays in Coral Bay.
Unforgettable Coral Bay Ningaloo Experiences
The Coral Bay Beaches
Coral Bay Ningaloo beaches are stunningly beautiful. Relax beneath a clear blue sky, listen to the lazy waves washing against the shore and swim in the calm, clear water. The Coral Bay water temperature is pleasantly warm, and beneath the surface is another world to explore - the thriving ecosystem of the Ningaloo Reef. Even just paddling around in the shallows you'll see plenty of fish.
See the Coral Bay Beaches page to read about and see beautiful photos of all the beaches within walking distance of the Coral Bay village.
Coral Bay Ningaloo Snorkeling
Snorkeling at Coral Bay is easy to do and so incredibly rewarding. Coral reefs and a huge variety of fish can be seen even in shallow water near the beaches. You're spoilt for choice with so many superb snorkeling sites to choose from! Alternatively, you can join tours that will take you to the outer reef and remote coastal locations where the snorkeling is even more amazing, or if you have access to a boat or a 4WD you can get to these places independently.
If you only have one chance to snorkel at Coral Bay snorkeling site close to town, make it Purdy Point.
Fishing at Coral Bay and the Ningaloo Reef
While some people just like to watch the fish swim by, many others prefer the challenge and adventure of catching them. If that's you, then the Ningaloo Reef is the destination of a life time. The ecosystem of the ocean off Coral Bay and throughout Ningaloo Marine Park supports an incredible abundance and diversity of fishlife, making it a prime destination for fishing, in addition to diving and snorkeling. See the Coral Bay Fishing for tips and important info you'll need to know before you try your luck fishing at Coral Bay.
Swim With the Whale Sharks
From Coral Bay you can swim with the whale sharks that come to the Ningaloo Reef every year in the days following the coral spawning. They stick around for three to four months, between March/April and July. Read more about whale sharks at Coral Bay and the Ningaloo Reef here.
Unexpected WildLife Encounters
Joining a tour is your best bet for seeing Ningaloo wildlife, but just simply being in Coral Bay, walking the beaches and snorkeling in the ocean, will put you in the path of some pretty amazing creatures.
For starters, there's the huge diversity and number of fish swimming about. Splash about in the shallows of Bill's Bay at the town beach, especially in the afternoon, and you'll be joined by big spangled emporer and the occasional parrotfish.
Sea turtles are common, and often swim by when you're not seeking them out on a tour. You could see one while snorkeling at the town beach, or sitting on the cliffs at Monk's Head.
Up on dry land, emus, kangaroos and huge perentie lizards are commonly seen.
Coral Bay Tours and Adventures
Coral Bay is well set up for tourists and backpackers with a myriad of tours and excursions to choose from. They'll take you to many of the best offshore and coastal fishing and snorkelling spots, including the more remote and hard to get to ones.
For people without boats and four wheel drives, Coral Bay tours are the only way to experience the wilderness and underwater wonderland further away from town - whether that be snorkeling on the outer reef, fishing in the open ocean behind the reef or swimming at beautiful beaches 20km up the coast.
The best thing about the tours is they're designed to get you right up close to the most amazing wildlife in the Ningaloo Reef Marine Park, and they all have excellent success rates for spotting wild life including whale sharks, dugongs, manta rays and whales.
Cheap and Free Things to do Within Walking Distance of Coral Bay Town:
- Laze on the beach and soak up the sunshine and beautiful scenery
- Swim in the Indian Ocean
- Walk north along the beach to Skeleton Beach, the Reef Shark Nursery and Point Maud
- Or walk south around Purdy Point along Paradise Beach to the red cliffs of Monk's Head
- At the Monk's Head jetties, watch the boats being launched and see if you can spot Merv, the Queensland Grouper (BIG fish) who likes to hang around the boats and jetties.
- Go snorkeling!
- Fish Feeding at the town beach, every afternoon around 3 - 3:30pm
- Traverse the dunes in front of the houses, and walk along the wobbly rocks at the water's edge. Spot lizards and watch the sun go down
- Beach fishing at Paradise Beach or Maud's Landing
- Nighttime walks along the beach, see the lights of town reflected in the calm water of Bill's Bay
Coral Bay Ningaloo - Beach Walks and Coastal Hikes
Beach walks are a wonderful way to enjoy the beautiful scenery and nature of Coral Bay Ningaloo. It's also a means of exploring beyond town to a few of the more remote snorkelling and fishing spots along the coast, if you don't have a 4WD and don't want to pay to go on a tour.
Leave a Comment
Have you been to Coral Bay?
Did you love it as much as I do? Or maybe you went there and found it boring? Either way, you can share memories of your Coral Bay adventures, favourite photos and tips for other travellers here.
Also feel free to ask me and other readers a question about travelling to Coral Bay.
Coral Bay Pages
About Coral Bay
Things to Do
- Coral Bay Boating Guide
- Monks Head and Merv