Cape Leveque Camping and the Dampier Peninsula
WA is home to a couple of regions that will blow your socks off time and time again, and Cape Leveque, or the Dampier Peninsula is one of them.
From the giant red sand cliffs through to the most amazing bright blue creeks you’ll ever see its a place that we hold very fond memories of, and we’d go back to in a heartbeat. In this post, we check out all of the Cape Leveque and Dampier Peninsula Camping options!
Where is Cape Leveque?
Technically speaking, Cape Leveque refers to the northern most tip of the Dampier Peninsula. However, in our experience, most people who are heading to ‘Cape Leveque’ are doing the entire Peninsula, and not just the northern most section.
You’ll find this amazing place north of Broome, with the most north part around 220km from Broome.
Is Cape Leveque worth the stay?
We’ve done a huge amount of camping in Western Australia, and other states too, and have a pretty good feel of what camp sites are good, great and next level amazing. There are a couple of camp sites in Western Australia that we seriously rate, and would go back in a heart beat.
Think Steep Point, Francois Peron National Park, anywhere along the Gibb River Road, the Fitzgerald River National Park, Duke of Orleans and I could go on for quite some time.
However, Cape Leveque is up there with some of the best camping, and if you have the time it is absolutely worth at least a couple of nights.
Cape Leveque Camping
A couple of years ago there were only a few well known camps on Cape Leveque and the Dampier Peninsula.
Today, there are more than you could poke a stick at, and you could literally spend a month jumping from camp site to camp site, spending a couple of days at each soaking up the amazing scenery, insane fishing and some of the best views that you’ll find anywhere in Australia.
Some of the paid camp sites on Cape Leveque include:
Ironically, the place that so many know on Cape Leveque is now closed, and has no expected opening date (although I’m sure it will, in time). Kooljaman is right at the top of the Dampier Peninsula, and was often referred to as Cape Leveque itself. It’s a stunning place, and if it opens, you should check it out.
Lombadina is on the west just before you hit Kooljaman, and has a great reputation. There’s a lovely slice of beach that you get access to, with hot bread on offer and lots of peace and quiet to enjoy.
In terms of the best camping in Australia, Pender Bay has been mentioned more than a couple of times. It’s an incredible location with some of the best scenery you’ll find anywhere, and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay there. It’s 178km north of Broome, and not far from Middle Lagoon.
One of the original camp sites on the Dampier Peninsula was Middle Lagoon, and we stayed there in 2015 and had an absolute ball. It’s another incredible location, with a decent area to explore.
Smithys is another great place to stay on the Dampier Peninsula, located not far from Pender Bay. The camp sites are not as spectacular, but Smithys is well known for the fishing and mud crabbing tours that the region is so well known for.
Not too far south of Middle Lagoon lies another camp site, called Gnylmarung retreat. Once again, it has incredible fishing, great hosts, stunning views and is located in a pristine part of the world.
Banana Well Getaway
We nearly booked a stay at Banana Well, and will use it as an excuse to head north again one day. This beautiful location is near a creek, and its suggested that you do not swim here as there is a risk of crocodiles. It’s got plenty of shade, lots of mangroves and a small pool to kick back in, with great hosts.
Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm
One of the more popular places to visit on Cape Leveque is the Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm. You can have a meal at their restaurant, swim in the spectacular pool, walk through their huge display of pearls or go on a pearl tour in a boat. They operate as a Caravan Park too, with a range of camping options.
Gumbanan Wilderness Retreat near Cygnet Bay
One of the lesser known Cape Leveque Camping destinations is Gumbanan, located not too far from One Arm Point, up a 1.5 kilometre track from the main road. It’s located right on the coast too, with great fishing and spectacular views.
Cape Leveque Free Camping
One of the more popular free camps on the Cape Leveque peninsula is Quandong Point. It’s similar to James Price, although probably less spectacular. You’ll find plenty of quieter spots to spend a few nights, and the coastline is like the rest of the peninsula; absolutely beautiful.
James Price Point
There’s a couple of places in WA that really stole a chunk of my heart, and James Price Point was one of them. It’s completely free, and albeit at the end of a pretty badly corrugated road, its worth every kilometre in.
You can camp on top of the red cliffs, on the beach, or you can head way up north to find a more secluded place.
There are no amenities, and you need to watch how far up the tide comes, but this is one of the most scenic, free camps anywhere in Australia.
On the same road to James Price Point lies a turn off to a truly spectacular place; Barred Creek. You can enter and turn right, which will take you to the northern part of the coastline, or turn left and you’ll eventually end up on the southern side of Barred Creek.
People camp on the beach, and behind the first dune for miles, with many choosing to be right next to the creek.
The fishing here is brilliant, and watching the creek empty and fill back up again with the brilliant, blue water is nothing short of incredible.
There are no amenities, but its free and beautiful.
Next to the Willie Creek Pearl Farm is a free camping area that a lot of people make use of, and love. You need to be aware of the risk of crocodiles, and stay safe, but you can camp close to the water and enjoy a spectacular part of the region without paying a cent.
What’s amazing about Cape Leveque?
For us, we love the red cliffs, lack of people (especially compared to Broome!), great fishing and the scenery overall is just unbeatable.
Have you been to Cape Leveque or the Dampier Peninsula? Book it in!