If you could jump on a plane tomorrow and go anywhere, where would it be?
Don’t think about it, just blurt out the first place that pops into your head.
The first place that pops into my head is Ningaloo Reef.
If I thought about it, a spot of shopping in Waikiki or eating lobster in Maine would be fun, but wanting to see pretty coral keeps edging into my dreams.
I caught the Western Australia bug earlier this year when I tagged along on one of DD’s work trips. We drove to Margaret River for the weekend and I was mesmerised by the scenery around Cape Naturaliste.
I’ve been yearning to go West again ever since.
Ningaloo Marine Park is a World Heritage-listed site found half way up the West Australian coastline. It’s home to the world’s largest fringing reef, a 260 kilometre long coral reef swarming with turtles, tropical fish, manta rays, humpback whales and whale sharks.
Australia.com tells me Turquoise Bay is the best place to snorkel: “The glass-clear water is shallow and there’s a lovely little current that gently pushes you along the water’s surface, so all you need to do is float and admire the coral scenery beneath you. Walk 300 metres to the left of the sandy white beach entrance and wade in equipped with your snorkelling gear. You’ll see dozens of colourful corals and fish galore.”
How good does that sound?
And here’s how good it looks …
I was lucky enough to snorkel above unbleached coral once, when I was on a work trip to Hayman Island waaaaay back in the 90s. Hearst took the whole staff of Cosmopolitan magazine there on an all-expenses-paid treat when the magazine cracked 400,000 in circulation.
Ah, those were the days.
Despite my fear of the water and inability to swim, I was mesmerised by the beauty just metres away from the resort. I’d imagine there’s no pretty coral there now, but please let me know if it still exists.
If I had time, I’d road trip it to Ningaloo from Perth, because that looks totally fabulous too. Australian Traveller details the best journey, with seafood extravaganzas in Geraldton and Carnarvon, Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort and the dramatic landscapes of Kalbarri National Park and The Pinnacles. But their suggested trip is 10 days – who knows when I’d find the time or dosh for that?
But a girl can dream! One day …
It’s funny how those dreams can change. I used to be such a big city holiday person. Scenery wasn’t my thing. It was all about shopping and restaurants and more shopping.
Now I’m in love with natural beauty – it makes my heart sing instead of race. And that is such a good feeling.
Song of the day: Smoke City “Underwater love”