UNESCO World Heritage-listed Purnululu National Park has gained attention the world over for the Bungle Bungle Range with its distinctive beehive-shaped striped sandstone structures rising out of the lush green landscape. The best way to appreciate the scale of this magnificent 240,000-hectare park is on a scenic flight. The Bungle Bungle Range is still impressive at ground level on a guided tour to the Domes and Cathedral Gorge.
The Bungle Bungles are believed to be around 350-million-year-old and have held a significant role in Indigenous culture for more than 40,000 years. Interestingly, these extraordinary sandstone formations weren’t ‘discovered’ by the rest of Australia until as recently as 1983. The Gija and Jaru people are the Traditional Custodians of Purnululu National Park, and the local Aboriginal people still maintain their important connection to its ancient landscape.
Australia's Top End and the Kimberley await with adventures to be had, dreamtime culture to enlighten and glorious nature to explore. Marvel at the termite mounds of Litchfield National Park, see Rock Art and cruise the Yellow Water wetlands in Kakadu, discover Katherine Gorge and the Ord River, soar above the Bungle Bungles, see the Derby Boab Tree for yourself, then finish with a camel ride on stunning Cable Beach.
The ‘Bungle Bungles’ as they’re known locally, is one of the most photographed tourist destinations in Australia. It’s definitely a must on a visit to the Kimberley region of Western Australia.
The sandstone of these steeply sloping beehive-shaped towers was deposited about 350 million years ago. Erosion by rivers, creeks and other weather events have carved out the domes to form impressive, sheer-sided gorges lined with majestic Livistona fan palms. This intricate maze of rock formations is one of the most outstanding examples of cone karst in sandstone in the world.
A documentary film crew stumbled upon the Bungle Bungles in 1983. Although the area has not been widely known in Australia until recent years and remains a remote wilderness destination, it has become recognised internationally for its exceptional natural beauty. Visitors from across the globe take the journey to the Kimberley region to catch a glimpse, by land or air of this stunning Devonian-age quartz sandstone landscape.
Take a Bungle Bungle Range tour or flight as part of a Fun Over Fifty Western Australian holiday.
The Bungle Bungles’ dramatic orange and grey bands are caused by the presence of cyanobacteria, which grows on the layers of sandstone where moisture accumulates. The orange bands are oxidised iron compounds that have dried too quickly for the cyanobacteria to grow. Their striking appearance can change dramatically depending on the time of year or the time of day, or the weather conditions.
The Bungle Bungle Range is located 150 kilometres northeast of the popular tourist destination of Halls Creek and 300 kilometres from the small regional town of Kununurra. You can fly to either of these towns and then join a guided tour, rent a 4WD for a self-drive adventure, or take a helicopter for spectacular aerial views.
The best time to visit the Bungle Bungle Range is during the dry season, which generally spans from May to October. This period offers more favourable weather conditions and accessibility for exploring the park.
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