Western Australia's oldest cave system, in Tunnel Creek National Park, is famous as a hideout used late last century by the Aboriginal leader Jandamarra. He was killed outside its entrance in 1897.
Tunnel through the reef
You can walk through the tunnel to the other side of the Napier Range. The trek runs underground for 750 metres and you have to wade through several permanent pools and return the same way. At least five species of bats live in the cave, including ghost bats and fruit bats, and stalactites descend from the roof in many places. The roof has collapsed through to the top of the range near the centre of the tunnel. Take a torch, wear sneakers and be prepared to get wet and possibly cold.
Take a day trip to the tunnel
Day trips to Tunnel Creek operate from Derby, Fitzroy Crossing and Broome and usually include a visit to Windjana Gorge. Fees apply to visit the national park.
- You need a four-wheel-drive to access the park, which is generally inaccessible during the wet season.
Tunnel Creek is a day use area, with facilities limited to toilets, picnic tables and an information shelter. You are welcome to camp at nearby Windjana Gorge National Park (camping fees apply).
When you are entering the Kimberley or Pilbara regions, you are entering crocodile country. Two species of crocodile occur in Western Australia: the estuarine (or saltwater) crocodile and the freshwater crocodile. The estuarine crocodile is the largest living reptile and is considered to be a dangerous predator. Freshwater crocodiles are smaller and not as aggressive. Freshwater crocodiles inhabit Tunnel Creek. Saltwater crocodiles have not been known to occur in the area but this may change. Be CROCWISE in Western Australia's north and download our Crocodile safety and myth-busting factsheet and Crocodile brochure. For more information on Be CROCWISE see www.nt.gov.au/becrocwise