Surfing up in Gnaraloo has been a well-kept secret for many years. Die-hards started coming in the 1960s and returning ever since. The most popular spot Tombstones, in its peak season, can get up to 4m. In less, windy seasons, novices can get out and try their luck. Also nearby are other popular spots: Midgies, Centres, Turtles, Fencies and Gnaraloo Bay. Read More
When the wind blows Southwesterly, the surfers clear the waters and leave way for kite and wind surfers at the Tombstones - the best place to go if your goal is to ride the waves. If you prefer flat water, Gnaraloo Bay is a great alternative.
hehe, do people still do this?
If anyone has any info regarding windsurfing, or if you know someone who is still alive, who could tell us something about this classic 70~ sport. please let us know. The pics below and indeed all picks are taken at gnaraloo
Kayakers will love the challenge of paddling around the Ningaloo reef. We recommend you start from the boat launch at Gnaraloo Bay or at the 3Mile Lagoon. When the swell is low, you can enjoy great fishing from your kayak too!
Get in your boat off the coast of Gnaraloo for a fishing session and you won’t be disappointed. Outside the sanctuary zones are great catches of Spangles, Rock Cod, Coronation Trout, Ranking, Pearl Pearch, Yellow-fin Tuna and Pink Snapper - to name a few.
No boat? No problem! There is great fishing along the Gnaraloo coastline; enthusiasts have brought in Spangles, Trevally, Mackerel, Bluebone, Thread-fin Salmon and Tailor.
Head out for the flatter waters out at Gnaraloo Bay, or take a leisurely paddle around the protected 3Mile Lagoon. Be aware of water conditions and the current so you have a safe and fun paddle. Or, if it’s waves you’re after, try a slow day at our infamous surfing spots
3Mile Lagoon and Gnaraloo Bay are amazing spots for snorkeling as the Reef is close to the shoreline. Over 170 species have been spotted along the reef, so you‘ll be sure to witness some underwater magic.
The Gnaraloo coastline has some fantastic diving locations, why not try the 3Mile Lagoon or Gnaraloo Bay for some shallow sheltered dives or head out past 3Mile Lagoon if you’re a more advanced diver.
Diving gear is available for rent in Carnarvon please contact Brad at www.outbackcoastdive.com If you’re keen to learn about local fish, pick up a copy of the Gnaraloo Snorkel Guide and Fish Identification booklet (found at Gnaraloo Homestead or 3Mile Camp shop).
Gnaraloo offers some great swimming along the coast but the 2 favorite spots are Gnaraloo Bay and 3Mile Lagoon.
Gnaraloo Bay is relatively sheltered from the SW winds in the late afternoon especially in the summer months, be careful of strong currents as you get close to 6 Mile.
3Mile Lagoon offers sheltered swimming inside the reef.
Always be mindful of the conditions as no beaches on Gnaraloo are patrolled.
See Surf Life Saving - Beach Safety
On a clear night at Gnaraloo, stargazers are able to see the Milky Way comprised of billions of stars as well as numerous major constellations, bright nebulas and even meteor showers. Gnaraloo has some of the highest quality dark skies in Australia. Find out what all the fuss is about by staying at 3Mile Camp or Gnaraloo Homestead.
Gnaraloo recognize the importance of minimizing light spill in the Environmental Protection interest. Gnaraloo has become a member of the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) with a view to applying to have Gnaraloo recognized as a Dark Sky Reserve (DSR).
An IDA Dark Sky Reserve is a public or private land of substantial size (of 700 km2 about 173,000 acres) possessing an exceptional or distinguished quality of starry nights and a nocturnal environment that is specifically protected for its scientific, natural, educational, cultural heritage, and/or public enjoyment.
We will update this page with info as we progress the application.
See The Nighttime Earth From Space Like You've Never Seen It Before
Gnaraloo is currently developing walking trails over all of Gnaraloo. In the mean time you can enjoy beautiful coastal walks between Tombies, 3Mile, Gnaraloo Homestead and Gnaraloo Bay.
Gnaraloo is currently developing mountain bike tracks over all of Gnaraloo. Once these tracks have been established we will post a map here.
If you’re here sometime between June to September you’ll witness Humpback whales swimming by, making their annual migration south. Or, see them on their return to warmer northern waters between December to March. Head down to the beach, or sit high up on the sand dunes - you’ll be amazed by these spectacular gentle giants.
Gnaraloo is in the process of developing bird watching facilities at Lake McLeod, Australia’s most inland wetland and home to 1000’s of migratory birds.
Kitesurfing at Gnaraloo can be enjoyed all along the coast, however there are two popular prime spots, one being on and around the famous Tombstones wave and one at Gnaraloo Bay. Should you be able to organise it, Tombstones to Gnaraloo Bay would make an excellent downwinder.
This is THE wave of Gnaraloo. It is a left hand, full on barrel from start to finish, depending on the tide and swell. Ideal conditions are at mid to high tide when the winds blow south southeast. It can break for up to 300-500m and is described by WaveFinder Australia as “a hell of a paddle, a triple suck takeoff and ledging freight train…”. Even on slow days, it’s a full all-around wave.
Be aware that at low tide, the reef is exposed; the Tombies are famous for dredging and ugly steps in the last wave.
The parking lot for this wave is just a short 2 km drive South of the 3Mile Camp.
This steep, fast left-hander will sometimes offer up barrels. Don’t get caught inside! This spot is good in all tides and averages 2.5-3m waves. Centres is known as a “gentlemen’s spot”, so don’t come out here if you’re not willing to share the waves.
It can be accessed from the Tombstones parking lot.
This fast, hollow left-hander is further out the back, south of Tombstones. Only experienced surfers should take on this wave, as it is very unforgiving. The best conditions are at mid to high tide. Be ready to lose some skin if you go out in low tide; the sharp reef break has a jagged limestone and coral bottom.
It can be accessed from the Tombstones parking lot.
Out here, you’ll experience left and right peeling reef breaks. The waves are best at mid to high tide. The Atlas of Australian surfing boasts this left wave having a “hollow bowl section and workable walls.” It gets quite shallow at low tide, so avoid being out in the water then and DO NOT walk or stand on the reef.
It’s a 25 minute drive south of 3Mile Camp located by the dunes, all on 4WD tracks.
Fencies is a fun right and left peak that breaks along the reef; sandy bottom. It’s best at mid to low tide.
It’s right out front along the fence at 3Mile Camp.
If you’re looking for a more chilled out wave, this is your best spot. Though it’s mellow, it’s still not a break for beginners - this solid left barrel wraps around a shallow reef. Go when there is a large swell from the Southwest, and great winds from the Southeast.
It’s a 7km drive from Gnaraloo Homestead.
Tombstones is the main wave and enjoyed by surfers and windsurfers as well. This wave is for experienced riders as the wave can be massive, but also because the reef is shallow and sharp (people do get hurt). Twintip users can still have fun; however surf board users love it and have been known to get up to 20 bottom turns.
Setup, launch and land
Getting your kite setup and into the water is not easy, and again is not for the inexperienced. Assisted launches would be the preference, however a steel peg does exist that you can use to attach your chicken loop and run your kite out to the edge of the window for an unassisted launch. This peg is on a big slope and among shrub - be aware on high tides and after heavy seas the small beach can be non-existent. Also there is plenty of sharp stone and shingle, those with a tarp will ensure their kites don’t get rips.
Remember to always comply with the right of way rules. Should the wave be busy or if it’s just too big for you, some great kiting can be had on smaller close by waves.
We recommend either wearing (or at least having) a pair of booties on you. If your kite gets eaten or tangled and you are forced to exit unassisted by your kite, the boots will save your feet on the rock and reef.
If the wind drops or you experience a problem with your kite, it should be possible to go down wind and get out near the 3Mile Lagoon; however be aware kite surfing is not allowed at the lagoon, so making an exit here should be a LAST resort.
This can be a great spot for flat water, however the typical south wind can make it a bit offshore and really only works safely with a lot of west in it. If you have a rescue boat this is not an issue.
Around the corner from the boat ramp is really good flat water which can be very shallow on a low tide and is covered in coral. Bout 100m out there are some decent waves but again should only be taken on by those who are confident with self-rescuing and long swims.
To the left of the boat ramp is the reserve; it is illegal to fish or use powered craft.
Gnaraloo Bay is where we have a boat ramp, in the afternoon the area can get quite busy with returning fishermen; it is also not unusual for craft to be anchored in the bay.
Setup and access
Gnaraloo Bay has a wonderful long and wide beach, so setup and access is not an issue for kiting. Walking 50m to the left of the boat ramp is a great spot to setup.
The best time to snorkel in the lagoon is when the swell is big or the tides are low. So as long as the conditions are clear, you can snorkel any time of day; however, fish are the most active right before sunset.
When the tide is high, and the swell is flat, experienced swimmers (using fins) can attempt to swim through a ‘keyhole’ in the reef at the back of the Lagoon. This keyhole can be found opposite to where the boats launch over the sand dune.
This is also the best spot for a night snorkel, as the lagoon is protected by the reef. Don’t forget your waterproof torch!
YES! All the Pics Below were taken at gnaraloo!