For years Geraldton has always been a quick transit stop on my travels further north. On the last visit though, I made sure I had a few days to explore.
Here are the things I uncovered and if you have some time up your sleeve, make sure that you give Geraldton a few days of your attention – it’s well worth it.
Visit the West End
Located on the southern end of Marine Terrace near the Visitor Centre, the West End is your place for cool cafes, boutiques, street art, wine bar and an excellent Men’s Shed that’s worth a peek.
There are plenty of options for coffee and brekky on this little strip. Personally, I like the Piper Lane Cafe, only because I love quaint places. Not far away Cafe Fleur and The Jaffle Shack are equally nice options. Slightly further down Marine Terrace heading south, The Quiet Life was anything but quiet and a popular spot with the early morning cycling crowd who discovered that this is where you get Geraldton’s best cuppa.
Ladies, bring your purse. This is also the strip where you’ll find some gorgeous shops stocking fashion, home wares and plenty of gift ideas.
Get arty at the Aboriginal Gallery
Also located on Marine Terrace, the Yamaji Art Centre deserves it’s own mention. This is an aboriginal owned and governed art centre and houses a beautiful display of indigenous art work.
The ladies that worked here on my visit were lovely and more than happy to chat about the fantastic works on display.
Aboriginal art from the mid-west area is unusually colourful thanks to the vivid and bright wildflower display in Spring. Each painting has it’s own story and you can read a description of the art work on the back of the canvas.
Brush up on History
Beautifully located on the Batavia Coast Marina, the Museum of Geraldton deserves a few hours of your time. Find out more about the region, including it’s wildlife and maritime history with a big range of interactive displays and an excellent 3D film about the HMAS Sydney.
There’s a separate shipwreck gallery that recounts the region’s interesting maritime sagas with much of this dedicated to the Batavia including a replica Longboat.
Go to a Market
On a Saturday morning, don’t miss the Farmers Market at Maitland Park on Cathedral Avenue. This is great spot to come for community vibes, as well as the the opportunity to stock up on produce straight from local farms, orchards and home kitchens.
On Saturday and Sunday morning, check out the Platform Markets at the old railways station on Chapman Road. These markets offer a whole lot more than the cottage crafts I was expecting and host a range of wares from some very creative people. There’s also plenty of goodies to eat, as well as local fruit and veg.
Hit the Beach
Like the rest of West Australia, Geraldton has no shortage of breathtaking beaches.
Whatever you’re into, there’s a beach for you – snorkeling, sunbathing, surfing, kiting or windsurfing. For detailed information about beaches in the area click here.
Hang out at The Esplanade
The recently revamped esplanade, located at the southern end of the foreshore is a great place to hang out, especially if you have kids in tow.
The Esplanade area has plenty of shaded grassy areas, BBQs and makes for a good spot for a picnic or place to chill out and relax – there’s free WIFI too.
Climb a Leaning Tree
The only trees you can climb top down (thanks Anne!) start becoming a familiar sight around the Greenough Flats. No second guesses for guessing which way the wind is blowing.
This one here on Brand Highway even gets it’s own viewing platform and parking bay and makes for great photo opportunity on your way towards Geraldton.
Explore a 19th Century Town
Stroll around a bygone era at the historic settlement of Greenough. Located south of Geraldton off the Brand Highway, the historic settlement town is now administered by the National Trust and is considered one of the best preserved 19th century towns in Australia.
The buildings at the settlement were built between 1863 and 1913 and give an interesting insight into what life was like for the early settlers of the mid-west.
Visit the Lighthouse
The most iconic image in Geraldton, the Point Moore Lighthouse was built in 1878 and still remains in operation today. It’s not possible to climb to the top but is still worth a visit.
After completion this was Australia’s fourth tallest lighthouse at 34 metres high. It’s beam can be seen 26 kilometres out in the ocean.
For more Lighthouse History, you can visit the Keeper’s Cottage on Chapman Road, which has been turned into a museum.
Watch a Film
The Film Harvest showcases the best alternative films every Wednesday night at the Orana Cinema. There’s a different movie on each week including Japanese animation and the best indie films from past and present.
Visit Ellendale Pool
A favourite spot for locals, Ellendale Pool is located 45km southweast of Geraldton.
Ellendale Pool makes for a lovely day out or an an extended stay for campers. You can swim or canoe in the natural rock pool on the Greenough River. For more on Ellendale Pool click here.
Walk the Heritage Trails
Discover Geraldton’s colourful history on this series of walking trails that all take in different aspects of it’s past. You can pick up a trail map at the Visitors Centre on Marine Terrace.
HMAS Sydney Memorial
One of the most notable sights when you arrive in Geraldton is the HMAS Syndey Memorial perched on the top of the hill on Gummer Ave. This touching memorial is in remembrance of the crew of the HMAS Sydney which sunk of the coast of WA during WWII .
There are daily tours of the memorial at 10.30. and the site offers stunning panoramic views of the coastline.
Geraldton is a RV friendly town. The carpark on Francis Street provides ample room for caravans and has a dumping point.
What did I miss? Would love to hear any more tips you have for Geraldton in the comments below.
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