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The Red Cliffs of Monk's Head, Coral Bay
Coral Bay Boat Launching, Fishing and Merv the Gigantic Fish
Monk's Head is a point on the coast a few kilometres south of Coral Bay, Western Australia.
As a place to walk or drive to and check out, it's incredibly scenic, with low red cliffs above shallow, clear blue water. Often you can look down into the water and see schools of fish swimming past - or even a turtle.
Coral Bay's boating facility was constructed at Monk's Head in 2007. Most Coral Bay boat tours leave from there, and it's also the place to go if you want to launch your boat (no more boat launching directly off the town beach!). In the evenings when all the boating activity is finished for the day, the jetties and rock walls at Monk's Head are a good place to fish from and watch the sun go down.
The Monk's Head Boat Launching Facility
Monk's Head is the hub of boating activity in Coral Bay. The boat launching facility is out in deeper water, surrounded by rock walls. The road from Coral Bay leads right down to it. There are 2 boat ramps, a couple of jetties for the larger tour boats and a big parking area for cars and trailers.
Off shore from the boat launching area are a number of moorings, several of which are available for hire overnight.
To get there, turn south off the main street onto Banksia Drive, a sealed road that begins just beyond the backpacker's and leads straight down to Monk's Head.
If you'd rather just walk, I'd suggest taking the shortcut to Banksia Drive through the Bay View Caravan Park, or walk along Paradise Beach and the red rocks.
Fishing at Monk's Head, Coral Bay
If you look down into the water from the jetties at Monk's Head, you'll often see the shadows of large fish, or a school of smaller fish. Fishing from the jetties and rock walls of Monk's Head is a popular Coral Bay activity at sunset and after dark. You don't need a boat or 4WD to fish there - all you need is a handline, some bait and a sinker.
Note: there are a few signs around saying that fishing is prohibited, but as long as you fish late in the day after all the tour boats have returned, there shouldn't be a problem.
Merv the Potato Cod
Merv, a long-time local of Coral Bay, is a big, fat fish weighing about 100kg. He used to live in Bill's Bay, but moved to Monk's Head when the boat ramps were built. He sometimes likes to hang out beneath the boats and jetties in the hope of getting some fish.
For your best chance of seeing him, head down to Monk's Head when the Coral Bay fishing boats are returning at the end of the day. You can try tempting him with a fish, like in the video below.
Monk Head Beaches
Around the point from where the Coral Bay boating facility is, you can climb down the red rocks to some beautiful secluded little beaches overhung by low cliffs. After the rocks of Monk's Head end, a long white sandy beach stretches all the way down to Five Finger Reef. The Sanctuary Zone ends before you get to Five Finger Reef.
Right next to the rock wall leading out to boat launching facility, there's a tiny sandy beach. It's nice to go for a quick swim from this beach when you're visiting the boating facility.
To the north, you can walk along the red cliffs and down onto beautiful Paradise Beach.
Here are some more Coral Bay pages you might like:
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Coral Bay Pages
About Coral Bay
Things to Do
- Coral Bay Boating Guide
- Monks Head and Merv