Lighthouse, Bunker Bay, Whale Lookout and Cape Naturaliste Loop
Starting from the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse Carpark at the end of Cape Naturaliste Road, Naturaliste, this walk takes you on a circuit via the Lighthouse, Bunker Bay, Whale Lookout and Cape Naturaliste trails. Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse stands on a 100m bluff overlooking Geographe Bay. The Lighthouse was built in 1903, with limestone carted by bullock wagons from a quarry about 1.5 km away. The three original keeper's quarters are still standing. The Lighthouse has a small museum that's free to visit, and the tearooms are a pleasant place to have lunch or a snack at the beginning or end of your walk. Following the path from the lighthouse buildings, which initially is shared with the Lighthouse Loop, the Bunker Bay Loop trail leads to the cliff edge revealing breathtaking views of the coast. The observation deck that overlooks Shelley Cove provides you with exceptional views along with plenty of seating. The cliffs along the northeastern coast are limestone, but you can also see the basement of much older granite rocks exposed along the shoreline. This trail demonstrates the three distinct types of vegetation on the Cape; woodland in sheltered areas near Bunker Bay, wind-pruned Marri growing higher on the ridge, and coastal heath. From the northwestern section of the Bunker Bay Loop trail, the hike heads along the Lighthouse Loop trail onto the Whale Lookout trail, which has heaps of lookouts and boardwalks along the way. As a plus, you can watch for whales from the said lookouts between June and December. There is also information about the migrating whales. Out of season, this trail offers magnificent panoramic coastal views, diverse coastal heath and an opportunity to spot birds living in the area. The hike continues along the Cape Naturaliste Loop trail above the sheer northern cliffs, winding through a windswept area largely devoid of vegetation. From the Naturaliste Lookout, there are stunning views of the pounding surf along the northwest tip of the Cape. Remember to check out "The Other Side of the Moon" below the lookout. The final section of the hike briefly crosses the Whale Lookout trail again, before heading along the Lighthouse Loop trail back to the car park. With beautiful coastal scenery and spectacular ocean views, this walk combines multiple trails in Cape Naturaliste to provide an exceptional experience for walkers of all ages and fitness levels. Sturdy walking shoes are recommended, as there are some short steep hills, rocky surfaces and sandy sections along the way. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
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