Things to do in Broome
Activities, Attractions and Tours
Ah, Broome, the Pearl of the north, with its eternal summer feel over winter, the gateway to majesty of the Kimberley, the Cable Beach Sunsets, its living history, and the eclectic vibe of a remote town that answers to no-one. Broome is truly a place to let yourself go.
When you are looking for things to do in Broome, pardon the pun, the world is your oyster. There is truly a huge array of activities to do. The ten iconic things to do in Brome that you need to think about including as you start planning your itinerary.
Broome Camel Rides
A popular tourist attraction on Cable beach is taking a sunset camel ride. It offers a sense of adventure as the "ships of the desert" sway up the sand in a long line. Most of the camels have once been wild but were easily tamed.
Willie Creek Pearl Farm
This Pearl Farm lies 38 km north of Broome, off Cape Leveque Rd. It offers a rare chance of visiting a working Pearl Farm and is worth the trip. Tours of the farm are given daily so check the tour time before you leave as the owners will only show you the farm during these open times. The managers of the pearl farm demonstrate the intricate process of cultured pearling, including live oyster seeding. A great educational demonstration for those interested in the pearling industry. Their showroom houses an extensive display of locally handcrafted jewellery and loose pearls for purchase at very competitive prices. Self drive tours available times vary depending on the season. Phone (08) 9193 6000 for tour times and details. Bookings are essential.
Grab an adventure to never forget with a remarkable and remote wonder of the natural world. Take the seaplane and land at the falls, or take a flight to Cockatoo Island and take a boat trip through the Buccaneer Archipelago, and then the fast boat through the wonderful falls.
Roebuck Plains Roadhouse
Just a short 20 minute drive outside of Broome. Taste good, honest roadhouse food with meals the size to share and at good prices. Take a photo with the Brahman bull statues
Claimed to be one of the most stunning beaches in the world with 22 kilometres of pristine white sand pindan cliffs and clear turquoise water, Cable Beach is a safe swimming beach with a variety of water sport activities including parasailing and surfcats. For a unique experience join the sunset camel rides that operate daily along the beach. Due to the possible presence of box jellyfish and stingers in tropical waters during November to April, precautions should be taken. Great location to enjoy a beautiful Broome sunset. North of the vehicle access ramp is a declared nude beach. Cable Beach is an ideal spot for swimming, picnicking and relaxing
Courthouse & Courthouse Markets
Built in distinctive "Broomestyle" architecture, the courthouse was the original Cable House, where the Broome end of the oceanic telegraph cable terminated. Browse through the gardens or visit the popular Courthouse Markets held on Saturday mornings from 8am - 1pm all year. Located on the corner of Frederick and Hamersley streets.
On Dampier Terrace (in Chinatown), admire two fully restored original pearling luggers The Sam Male and the DMcD were both built here in Broome and are two original pearling luggers remaining in Broome. A beautifully restored and heritage listed Old Pearler’s Quarters can also be seen on Upper Dampier Terrace.
Dinosaur footprints over 120 million years old can be seen at Gantheaume Point at very low tide. As the reef area is very fragile, care must be taken when exploring this area. For the benefit of visitors, a plaster cast of the tracks has been embedded at the top of the cliff. Footprints around Broome have identified the following species; * Stegosaur * Sauropod * Wintonopus * Theropod * Megolosauropus Broomensis. Footprints can be viewed at Gantheaume Point at tides below 2.16m. As the rocks can be slippery and steep, A high level of mobility and sturdy shoes are required. It is not recommended to attempt to find the footprints once it is dark.
Broome Historical Society Museum
Definitely one of the best regional museums in Australia - a must see when visiting! The Broome Museum features a display on pearling and a large collection of photographs and files that piece together the fascinating history of Broome. Located in the old Custom's House behind the Seaview Shopping Centre. Phone (08) 9192 2075 for hours and complete details.
Broome Civic Centre
Broome boasts a modern library situated in the Civic Centre gardens on Hamersley Street. Visitors welcome to borrow books. Open hours: Mon/Wed/Fri 10am-5pm; Tue/Thu 10am-7pm; Sat 9am-12noon; Closed Sunday.
Broome Crocodile Park
The park is home to dangerous salt water crocodiles as well as Australian fresh water crocodiles. Everything from small babies to massive 5 metre crocodiles can be seen. Don't miss the afternoon feeding! Kiosk facilities available. Phone (08) 9193 7824 for hours and complete details.
Officially opened in 1916, it is believed to be the oldest operating picture garden in the world. This unique indoor/outdoor theatre has withstood the ravages of war, cyclones and king tides. Housed in the foyer is an excellent display of movie memorabilia. Taking in a movie under the stars at Sun Pictures is a must do when visiting! Located in Chinatown. Current movies are shown every night. Phone (08) 9192 3738 for features and show times.
Situated overlooking beautiful Roebuck Bay on Hamersley Street is the site of Broome's War Memorial. The park features an array of memorabilia, including a replica of one of explorer William Dampier's sea chests and an old train coach once used on a railway that connected the original jetty at Town Beach to Chinatown.
A delightful reminder of the early multi-cultural mix of people in Broome. Take a wander through the original commercial centre of Broome, which was once the bustling hub of pearl sheds, billiard saloons, entertainment houses and Chinese eateries. Chinatown is now home to some of the worlds finest pearl showrooms, along with a variety of retail outlets. Sidewalk cafes add a splash of colour to the pavements.
Mr. Tokuichi Kuribayashi, originally from Nippon Pearl Company, Tokyo, Mr. Hiroshi Iwaki and Keith Francis Dureau from Pearl Prop. Ltd. were pioneers in the cultured pearl industry in Broome. The three lifesize statues are now on display on the grassed area of Carnarvon Street in Chinatown.
Broome's water link to the world. Built to replace the old jetty near Town Beach, this massive structure can accommodate large cargo and cruise ships at any tide (which can run 10 metres!) The wharf is a popular fishing spot and is open to the public except during cargo operations. Located at the end of Port Drive.
Beneath the sparkling tropical waters that surround Broome is a diverse aquatic habitat that is fast developing a reputation as a unique diving experience. Half day, full day and extended dive trips are available. Charters are also available to the Rowley Shoals. Situated approximately 260 kilometres west of Broome on the edge of the Continental shelf, the Rowley Shoals is one of the best diving areas in the world where the magnificent coral gardens, giant clams and large reef fish astound visitors.
Balancing the memory of those who died in the air raids, Broome's Japanese cemetery is a poignant reminder of the Japanese contribution to Broome and pearling. The cemetery is the final resting place for over 900 Japanese pearl divers. Large sandstone rocks have been used in the headstones and inscribed in Japanese. Situated on Port Drive.
This natural phenomenon is caused by a full moon rising over the exposed mudflats of Roebuck Bay at extremely low tides, creating a beautiful optical illusion of a staircase reaching to the moon. Occurs March to October for 3 nights every month. Great locations to view the Staircase include the outdoor bar at the Mangrove Hotel and Town Beach. Staircase Markets take place during most staircase dates at Town Beach, and feature a great selection of foods and crafts.
Situated in the old Matsumoto General Store is Matsos Restaurant and Broome Brewery. A range of boutique beers is available from the Matsos Brewery which is also open as a restaurant nearly everyday of the year.
Broome legend has it that Buccaneer explorer, William Dampier, came to the present town anchorage, landed a treasure chest of pirated pieces of eight and buried it at Buccaneer Rock. His ghost is said to be seen there on a misty night with a lantern looking for the lost loot. A great legend but, alas, the treasure seems only an often repeated myth. The Rock is located in Roebuck Bay opposite the Mangrove Hotel.
Broome Chinese Cemetery
The resting place for members of Broome's Chinese community, situated on Port Drive.
The Dampier Peninsula is a unique area north of Broome featuring spectacular red pindan cliffs, azure waters and an amazing variety of flora and fauna. Several Aboriginal communities offer bush tucker walks and mud-crabbing tours. Access is by 4WD only. A variety of day tours are available from Broome - contact Broome Tourist Bureau for details.
Dutch Flying Boat Wrecks
Located 1km offshore from Town Beach the Dutch Flying Boat wrecks are visible, remaining as evidence of the Japanese air raid on Broome during WWII. On the 3rd March, 1942, at 9.30am a force of 10 Japanese aircraft destroyed a flotilla of 16 large flying boats on the water and seven aircraft on the airstrip. The tragedy was that many of the flying boats were carrying women and children. The death toll is still uncertain, but probably exceeded 100, for many of the bodies were never recovered. The mud of Roebuck Bay has done a very good job of preserving the aircraft. At extremely low tides, the plane wrecks are visible to those who wish to walk the kilometre across the Roebuck Bay mud flats from Town Beach. The Catalina Boat Wrecks are only visible at tides less than 0.86m, it is recommended you allow an hour to walk to out to the wrecks, and an hour to return to shore. Enclosed shoes are also recommended.
Broome waters boast an abundance of different varieties of fish including the elusive sailfish. Full, half day or extended fishing charters available and tournaments are held annually. For a list of fishing charter operators, check out the fishing section in the Tours & Activities page or contact the Broome Tourist Bureau.
Hard Hat Diver
This life size statue of the Hard Hat Pearl Diver adjacent to the Cultured Pearling Monument in Chinatown, was erected in 1999 to pay tribute to the role that the Hard Hat Diver played in establishing Broome as the centre of the world's pearling industry in the early 1900's. These early Pearl Divers came from diverse cultural backgrounds, and this resulted in Broome being exempted from the White Australia Policy, making the town a pioneer of multiculturalism in Australia. Around 50 of these divers along with many of their ancestors still reside in Broome today.
Lions Pioneer Park
Located at Town Beach (end of Robinson Street). This is a pleasant picnic and recreation area, and a great spot to watch the Staircase to the Moon. Kiosk facilities available.