Garden Island Kayak Trail, Rockingham
Paddle across a semi-sheltered bay to Garden Island and discover delightfully secluded beaches and great snorkelling. The trail starts from Point Peron in Rockingham which is 42km (45 minutes) south of Perth.
About the Trail
Garden Island is a slender island about 10 kilometres (6 mi) long and 1.5 kilometres (0.9 mi) wide, lying about 5 kilometres (3 mi) off theWestern Australian coast, to which it is now linked by a man-made causeway. The Royal Australian Navy's largest fleet base is on the shores of Careening Bay, on the southeastern section of Garden Island, facing Cockburn Sound.
You could launch off the beach anywhere along the Rockingham foreshore, or from the boat ramp where there are toilets, but I have shown the start of this trail from the beach near Point Peron, just beyond the camp school. The water here is a little more oceanic and there are some small waves to play in.
Paddle directly towards Garden Island where you can land on the small beaches to the west of the Causeway. Distance is about 2.5km. Landing is permitted between sunrise and sunset only, and there is an exclusion zone around the naval base (located on the other side of the causeway).
In calm weather continue the trip around to the west where there are safe beaches to land on, some waves to play in, and great swimming and snorkelling.
The nice thing about this trip is the sense of isolation. Despite the naval base, or because of it, hardly anyone goes to this part of the island. The causeway provides a route back to the mainland. There will usually be a sheltered side to make paddling against the wind easier but plan your trip to return before the sea breeze is too strong.