Thungara Trail 6 - Lookouts, Port Denison
This is one of six trails on which to explore the area of Dongara and Port Denison. This walk starts at the Fishermen’s Lookout, takes you down through the marina in Port Denison, along the beach, then along the river into Dongara and back.
About the Trail
This walk begins at the Fisherman's lookout and Obelisk located at Point Leander reef in the Arurine Bay, the area contains the sites of several shipwrecks. Head along the Marina foreshore past the fishing fleet which began in the mid 1950s bringing in the Western Rock Lobsters. You'll pass the old processing factory which opened in 2002, now they are processed in Geraldton.
Cross the road to Grannies beach where the school children have their swimming lessons and follow the path along Surf Beach passing Nun's Pool where the Dominican Sisters used to bath whilst living at the now Priory Lodge Hotel but then their Convent and school.
If you have time cross the road and climb the stairs to the lookout which overlooks the Indian Ocean and the Irwin River Estuary. Otherwise take the boardwalk which crosses the river. Follow the river all the way into the Dongara side. You will see an array of bird life on this section of the walk.
When you approach the Irwin River Bridge take the stairs up and cross the river on Point Leander Drive. Head back down to the Irwin River Park and follow the river trail, you will see a building right on the banks of the river which was the site of the first Flour Mill in 1865. This has also been the home of Dr Bartlett and the Benedictine's Retreat and is now Denison House and houses the local arts and crafts groups.
Follow the river around and you will come to a footpath in Retreat Boulevade, this will lead onto the boardwalk and Ocean Drive which will take you back to where you started.
Need to Know
Dongara - Port Denison
Dongara Port Denison is a chilled out twin town blessed with charming heritage buildings, stunning white sand beaches, year round holiday weather and perfect conditions for all manner of water sports. The quickest way to get there from Perth is also the prettiest. Starting at Yanchep, the Indian Ocean Drive leads you on a four hour scenic drive, passing pristine beaches, towering dunes, dazzling spring wildflowers and many fishing and surfing hotpots. Head up to Fisherman's Lookout and take in the panorama of Port Denison and one of the largest fishing boat harbours in Western Australia. Have a go at hooking your own dinner from an abundance of tailor, snapper, whiting, dhufish and, when in season, rock lobster. Or stroll down to South Beach - a picture-postcard setting for a fun family day on the beach or a taste of the surfing, body boarding, kite surfing or stand up paddle boarding action. Lovers of nature and the outdoors can hire snorkelling gear, kayaks, surf boards and push bikes. There's a good choice of walk trails traversing the twin towns' most scenic Coral Coast and Irwin River landscapes, and a visit in spring showcases wildflower country at its very best just a short drive from town. As well as natural wonders, you'll find some fascinating history to immerse yourself in. Dongara's beautifully restored Russ Cottage (circa 1860s) presents the perfect example of a traditional yeoman's cottage. From here, head for the Old Police Station (circa 1870), now the Irwin District Museum, and step inside a piece of pioneering history that chronicles the hardships and triumphs of the era. For young families, a day can be filled with fun at the activity park, barnyard or wildlife park. On Saturday nights in the summer months, you can also enjoy the yesteryear charm of a night at the drive-in cinema - one of only two remaining in Western Australia. To eat, sleep and breathe Dongara heritage, book a room at the Priory Hotel, or for another option choose from motels, units, caravan parks and holiday homes.
Dongara Port Denison Visitor Centre
9 Waldeck Street, Dongara Western Australia 6525, Australia
Phone: (08) 9927 1404 | www.dongaraportdenison.com.au
The Dongara Port Denison Visitors Centre is owned and operated by the Shire of Irwin and operates from the Heritage-listed Old Post Office building in Dongara. This is the first stop on the Irwin District's Heritage Walk of Dongara. The Dongara Port Denison Visitors Centre's primary focus is to provide information and assistance to visitors to the area and assist all tourism related businesses in providing a service to visitors. The Visitor Centre is an accredited level two Visitors Centre and an Australian Tourism Accredited business ensuring the highest standard of customer service, quality products and experiences to all visitors. The staff can assist with bookings on the Trans WA and Integrity Coach lines, booking accommodation in the whole of the state, providing visitors with maps and brochures of the Shire and the region and assisting with other requirements such as camping, parking and drinking water. The Centre also has a Department of Transport Agency and the Public Library Service. The Dongara Port Denison Visitors Centre is open Monday to Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm, and Saturday 10:00am to 1:00pm. Closed public holidays.