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Cathedral Gorge, Purnululu NP Cathedral Gorge, Purnululu NP

  • 1-3 hours
  • 2 km
    • Bush Walk Class 4

      Difficult trail with rough surface that may have very steep hills or extensive rock hopping. Directional signage may be limited. Bushwalking experience, navigation and emergency first aid skills, and good fitness required.

The walk to Cathedral Gorge is 2km return.  It has an astonishing natural amphitheatre of red rock located within the Bungle Bungle Ranges in Purnululu National Park. The unusual bee hive striped formations and deep gorges make it one of the most fascinating geological landmarks and one of two World Heritage sites in Western Australia.

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From Piccaninny carpark, the walk winds its way through the iconic beehives, heading down between two walls of rock before opening up into Cathedral Gorge. Water pounding through here in the wet season has created a huge amphitheatre of red rock with a pool of water in the middle (be sure to bring a wide-angle lens for your camera).  The acoustics are so good that music has been played within the gorge. On the return journey to the carpark be sure to take the alternative route through the beehives.  

While in the area take a couple of days and a backpack to explore nearby Piccaninny Creek and Gorge, camping overnight. If you do this, make sure you are well prepared. The deeper you go, the more spectacular it gets, but for your safety, you must register at the visitor centre before setting out. On the northern side is Echidna Chasm, a narrow gorge different from those on the southern side.

The park is open only between April and December  (weather permitting). Check with the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions Kununurra office on 08 9168 4200 for the current weather forecast and road conditions before entering the park.  

Access to the park by road is via Spring Creek Track, from the Great Northern Highway approximately 250 km south of Kununurra, to the track's end at the Purnululu National Park Visitor Centre.  The track is 53 km long and is usable only in the dry season (April 1 to December 31), and only by four-wheel-drive (4WD) high clearance vehicles and off-road trailers. Safely navigating it takes approximately three hours. From the Purnululu National Park Visitor Centre, the trail is then located a further 27 kilometres drive south.

Access by air is less demanding; scenic flights over the massif by helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft are available within the park or from Halls Creek, Kununurra or Warmun. This is the best way to gain a perspective of the Bungle Bungle's massive size and spectacular scenery.

Kununurra Visitor Centre

(08) 9168 1177

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Be trail ready for Cathedral Gorge, Purnululu NP

Here is everything you need to know before visiting this trail.

Time / Duration

1.5 - 2 hours


2km return

What To Pack

Group B - Hiking & Long Distance Trails (Bushwalks and/or longer trails) required.

Trail Start

Piccaninny Creek car park, Purnululu National Park, 230km (3 hours) south of Kununurra, which is 3200km (30 hours) north of Perth

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Trail End

Bush Walk

Class 4

Difficult trail with rough surface that may have very steep hills or extensive rock hopping. Directional signage may be limited. Bushwalking experience, navigation and emergency first aid skills, and good fitness required.

Visit Trail Tips for further information.

Difficulty Notes

Trail is unmodified and rocky.

Hazards & Warnings

Temperatures can get very hot (up to 50 degrees), walk in the early morning or late afternoon


  • Picnic Area
  • Public Toilet

Best time of year

April to mid October


Entry fee to Purnululu National Park

Trail Access

Air or road to Kununurra. 4WD track into National Park.

Prohibited Items

No pets
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1 trail goers have rated Cathedral Gorge, Purnululu NP as 4 out of 5!

We love to hear from people who've been on our Western Australian trails, so it would be most appreciated it if you wanted to leave a review.

Carolyn Port

Reviewed 28 Jul 2021, 10:49am

Lovely walk which most people would easily manage. The scenery at the end is well worth it. Take plenty of water as the first (and last) parts are very exposed to the sun. If you join it with the beehive walk you get an up close view of the 'beehive' like rock formations without adding much distance to the walk.

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