In 2018 I travelled to Broome, which is located on the coast in northern Western Australia, long way from my hometown in Melbourne, Victoria. Broome had been in my bucket list for years and it felt like the perfect time to take a 5 day mini break.
Broome’s climate consists of the dry season (May-October) and the wet season (Nov-April) which is drastically different to Melbourne, a city renowned for its ‘all seasons on any day’ weather.
I was visiting in April at Easter time, and as I flew over the desert to the west, I contemplated ‘would be too hot to visit Broome at this time of year?’ I reassured myself that I do love summer and hot weather, and there was always the hotel pool to cool down.
Anyway, I’d wanted to visit Broome since my older sister raved how incredible the place was, and I couldn’t wait to see for myself the contrasting red earth against the blue Indian Ocean.
Day 1 – Arrival
A 4 hour flight, stopover in Perth, then a smaller plane to Broome airport. As we descended into the dry heat, I could see the tiny shed-like building and realised how small the population is in Broome compared to Melbourne.
As the flights had cost a bit to get to the other side of the country and as I was only visiting for 5 days, I opted out of hiring a car. Instead, I caught a taxi from the airport to my hotel near Cable Beach. Not quite as luxurious as the famous Cable Beach Resort, but a very comfortable hotel nonetheless.
I checked in and as it was late, I headed to the small hotel restaurant for some dinner.
The staff were friendly and services impeccable. I ordered my food and received my first shock of the trip. I nearly choked on my fries and spat out my costly glass of wine. Delicious food yes, but at least twice as expensive (if not more) as Melbourne and other bigger cities.
I reassured myself that I’d figure out the closest shops in the morning for necessities.
Day 2 – Heat
First morning in Broome. I am delighted to be greeted by a cane toad in the outdoor bathroom! Fascinated, I take plenty of pics to send home and set out to find food and coffee.
Its early, 8:30am and already a boiling hot day! I head to the corner store and buy a few provisions and coffee before getting my bearings of the surrounding streets. Other hotels, a bar on the corner and a path towards Cable Beach.
A little later I decide to walk to the popular area where Cable Beach Resort is located. The heat has escalated and is like an open furnace. I notice other travellers in air conditioned hire cars slowly drive by. And to be shocked a second time, a couple of hundred metres up the road, I get a blood nose! The red streams down my face I head back to the hotel where some guests assist me, as I sit on the step with an ice pack. Apparently, blood noses are common in the heat! I realise now, that I have perhaps travelled a bit early in the season, and a month or two later might have been an easier holiday.
After some quiet time under a fan with a bookhttps://notatourist.net/10-best-travel-australia-books/, I try a late afternoon trek to Cable Beach and watch the stunning sunset and the famous camel rides, with a drink and fries at the resort.
Day 3 – CBD
On the third day I catch a bus 3kms into Broome in the afternoon to visit the night markets and see the renowned ‘staircase to the moon’.
The town of Broome has a mixed atmosphere. There’s everyone from country folk, low socio-economic families, rich Asian hotel owners, indigenous communities, and travellers.
I have a drink in a random hotel bar, which doesn’t have much ambiance, and watch people for an hour before wandering over to the very sweet markets. There’s live music, food stalls and crafts, entertaining people as they gather towards the beach side at sundown to watch the ‘staircase to the moon’ on the beach.
Day 4 – Cape Leveque
Last full day on Broome and I have booked a tour to Cape Leveque. It’s hands down one of the best tours I’ve ever done. The tour guide is a down to earth local and clearly loves what he does. As we head north along the bumpy dirt road, we visit indigenous communities, the famous Beagle Bay Church and then stop for a pre packed lunch. I see a group of indigenous boys, no older than 10, cliff jumping into the ocean, in the middle of nowhere having the time of their lives.
We reach Cape Leveque, see the remote and stunning scenery as we learn of the oldest dinosaur prints in the world are located in the area. I’m blown away by this part of Australia and love the history and the beautifully unaffected land.
Day 5 – Conclusion
Time to leave Broome and take the two flights home via Perth. Yes, north Western Australia in April was hot and yes it cost a lot to travel to and stay in Broome! But it was well worth the money to visit an extraordinary part of the world. My travel tips would be to wait until May or June to travel, when the temperature has dropped, and to also research some food and dining options before you arrive!
Kate Rae is a travel blogger at Not A Tourist, providing alternative and unique travel tips for Australia. Not A Tourist is a go-to place for Australian travel secrets, written by a local.
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