The parks range from rocky coastal islands to the mainland with windswept cliffs, and sweeping beaches exposed to the might of the Southern Ocean. This contrasts with the tranquil waters and shores of the bays with spectacular sand dunes, with extensive heath lands that give way to dense mallee and remnant sheoak woodland, once the domain of the glossy-black cockatoos.
Coffin Bay National Park, which includes the Whidbey Wilderness Area, takes in the Coffin Bay Peninsula and is the largest park at approximately 31,000 hectares. Many beaches and headlands in this park offer excellent fishing opportunities, however, be aware of the unstable cliffs and dangerous seas of the Southern Ocean with strong rips, large swells and freak waves.
This park is home to an abundance of birds, wildlife and wildflowers. There are 20 kilometres of sealed road from the entrance to such picturesque places as Avoid Bay, Point Avoid, Almonta Beach and Yangie camping ground.
For the ardent 4WD enthusiast, there is the track across the sand dunes to Gunyah Beach; or, for the more adventurous, a trip to Point Sir Isaacs at the tip of the Coffin Bay Peninsula – a six hour return journey. An information and permit station is located at the entrance to the park. A fee applies to day visitors and campers. This park was the home of the Coffin Bay pony, descendants of horses bred in this area as remounts for troops during World War One. The remaining ponies have been relocated to nearby private land.
Kellidie Bay Conservation Park
Kellidie Bay Conservation Park is a much smaller park at 1,786 ha whilst Mount Dutton Bay Conservation Park includes Rabbit Island, Goat Island and The Brothers plus six unnamed islands. Whidbey Isles Conservation Park includes three of the four Hummocks Islands plus Whidbey, Price and Perforated Islands. Avoid Bay Islands Conservation Park consists of Black Rocks plus two small unnamed islands in Avoid Bay. All islands are off limits without written permission from Department of Environment and Heritage.
These parks conserve more than 250 species of native plant life and over 100 species of native birds, reptiles and mammals – a true nature lover’s paradise.
For more information, contact the Coffin Bay Tourist Assocation