10 FREE things to do in Broome
1. Explore Broome’s hidden beaches.
You don’t need to travel to Cape Leveque to see iconic red-cliffed beaches (but if you have the time, it’s definitely worth it!) Take a drive out to the lighthouse at Gantheaume Point and then follow Kavite Road towards Broome port. You’ll find a beautiful stretch of coastline with few tourists and lots of nooks and crannies to explore! Roebuck Bay also has some beautiful sections of red-cliffs. Visit around high tide and you can watch the sea turn red as the pindan soil mixes with the aqua water.
2. Walk Broome’s Heritage Trail.
Broome’s 1.2km Heritage Trail is an easy, flat walk that’ll take you less than an hour to complete. Focussing mainly on Chinatown, you’ll discover some amazing historic and iconic spots including old Pearler’s Homes and the historic Sun Pictures (walk inside and check out the memorabilia on their walls). Download a printable map here.
3. Watch the Staircase to the Moon.
If you’re lucky enough to be in Broome during the Staircase, it’s definitely worth checking out! This natural phenomena occurs during selected nights of the Dry Season during full moon, when the low tide has retreated and there are puddles of water on the tidal flats. As the full moon rises across Roebuck Bay, the puddles reflect its light and a staircase effect is created. The best viewing spots are the Mangrove Hotel and Town Beach where popular night markets are held from April to October.
The Staircase to the Moon is number # 6 in our book. Grab your copy and read more about it!
4. Wander through the Japanese Cemetery.
The Japanese Cemetery is a reminder of the perils of the early pearling industry in Broome, and also of the large contribution that the Japanese had to the industry. The Japanese were highly regarded for their skills in the pearling industry but, unfortunately, many of them died from the dreaded ‘bends’ (diver’s paralysis) or from drowning. Cyclones were a large factor in drownings. The cyclones of 1887 and 1935 each caused the deaths of at least 140 men. The cemetery is on Port Drive on the way out to Cable Beach.
5. Discover Australia’s Jurassic Park.
Nicknamed ‘the dinosaur coast’ and ‘Australia’s Jurassic Park’, the stretch of coastline between Broome’s Roebuck Bay and Cape Leveque is riddled with prehistoric footprints. The dinosaur footprints at Gantheaume Point are the most well-known, but can only be seen on extremely low tides. Walking toward the ocean away from the lighthouse you will find a concrete cast of the footprints amongst the rocks (in case you’re not here to see the real ones during an extreme low tide).
6. Check out the Courthouse Markets.
Ok, so technically, walking through the markets doesn’t cost a cent, but if you’d like to buy some handicrafts then you’ll need to bring some cash (some stalls do accept cards, too). The Courthouse Markets are held each Saturday and Sunday morning during the Dry Season (April to October) in the beautiful gardens of Broome’s heritage-listed Courthouse. Don’t miss Maryani’s satays at the Indonesian caravan. Another top stall, Kimberley Wild Gubinge sells the gubinge fruit, a super fruit that rates as the highest natural source of vitamin C on earth!
7. Soak in rockpools.
There are some beautiful spots to soak in rockpools around Broome, with the huge tides continuously topping them up with fresh sea water. Gantheaume Point just after high tide is a favourite. Look around the rocks and you may find the remnants of Anastasia’s Pool which was carved out by the former lighthouse keeper, Patrick Percy, to provide relief for his wife Anastasia who suffered from arthritis. Unfortunately, the pool was badly damaged with bad weather in 2014 and the Shire of Broome have decided not to repair it :(
8. Walk from Cable Beach to Gantheaume Point (Minyirr).
At the Southern end of Cable Beach is Gantheaume Point (Minyirr) where, on a King low tide, you can see dinosaur footprints. Each morning a steady stream of people walk from Cable Beach to Gantheaume. It’s an easy 7km walk and a morning bus service connects to Gantheaume if you only want to walk one way.
9. See a Shooting Star.
Broome’s clear night sky offers fantastic star (and moon) gazing opportunities. Find a grassy patch away from the lights, then lay back and spot for shooting stars.
10. Go camping up the Peninsula.
The 220km stretch of coastline between Broome and Cape Leveque is a popular camping getaway. Ardi (meaning Northeast in the Bardi language) offers spectacular scenery, pristine coastline and unique cultural experiences with the ‘saltwater people’. There are some great free camping spots up the Peninsula such as Quandong Point and James Price Point. For more info, check out Broome Visitor Centre’s website here.