Broome, Australia cruises
Nestled on the north coast of Western Australia is the small but mighty town of Broome, renowned for its striking natural coastline and prosperity in the 20th century pearl trade.
Broome port guide
Broome is where visitors are invited to feel at once at home and on holiday. It’s where different cultures live together harmoniously. It’s where the tempting turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean meet vibrant red beaches.
You could spend a slow-paced afternoon on the beach, perhaps cooling down every so often by dipping your toes in the warm surf. For a more active experience, maybe you’d prefer to spend time exploring the town’s museums and historical sites. This tropical port town brings opportunities for a glimpse into Australia’s interesting past, while at the same time offering many fresh and innovative experiences.
Top landmarks and sights in Broome
While the town itself is small, Broome has a rich history and incredible scenery, and is the gateway to some of Western Australia’s extraordinary wilderness. Find time to explore the highlights of this enticing port town.
One of the most photogenic areas of Broome is its unique coast. The bright blue ocean contrasts magnificently with dusky sands at Roebuck Bay, the Mars-like red rocks at Gantheaume Point, and postcard-perfect white sands at Cable Beach. Every patch of this unique shore is a sight to behold.
Gantheaume Point is a fascinating archaeological site, where evidence of the dinosaurs who once roamed here has been unearthed. Visible only at low tide, the fossilized footprints are estimated to be around 130 million years old and include a remarkable sauropod print, measuring 5 foot 9 inches.
Migratory bird species abound at Roebuck Bay, and the waters that border Broome offer up all manner of marine life to spot. While avid fishers go in search of tropical fish species, visitors to Broome may prefer to spend their time looking out for turtles, dolphins, and whales.
Things to do in Broome
Whether you’re interested in learning as much as possible about this charming port town, or you’d prefer to relish the gift of time, and savor unplanned hours spending time doing very little, Broome may well prove to be a real highlight of your holiday.
Explore and unwind on the beaches
The main beach in Broome is Cable Beach, boasting 22 kilometers of pristine white sands and a warm and welcoming shore. Spend time here basking in the sunshine, perhaps catching up on your holiday read and enjoying the view. At some points of the year, you’ll find camel rides on the beach, which can prove to be wonderful and unique way to see the region.
Learn about Broome’s pearl trade
In the 1880s, Broome was a wild frontier town that started attracting European and Asian immigrants who wanted to work in the thriving pearl industry here. Remnants of this heritage is still visible throughout the town, and in fact there are still a number of pearling farms you can visit. The Pearl Luggers visitor center, by Willie Creek Pearls, offers a chance to really get to know this important part of Broome history.
Get lost on purpose, in Chinatown
Having attracted many Chinese immigrants in the 20th century, a Chinatown in Broome naturally emerged. Located in the heart of the old town, this multicultural hub boasts charming, colorful shops and cafés and a wonderful blend of Chinese style décor with structures more akin to frontier town scenes.
Discover Broome’s indigenous history
Long before the late 19th century, when foreign immigrants arrived in Broome, an indigenous population thrived here. There are more than 84 Aboriginal communities in the entire Shire of Broome, and their culture can be explored in the town’s museums and art galleries.
Eating and drinking near Broome
European, Chinese, Japanese, Indonesian, and Malaysian influence is evident in the eclectic array of cuisine on offer in Broome. Throughout Chinatown and Cable beach you’ll find all manner of different cafes and restaurants to try.
In the Broome Courthouse Markets, located in the Heritage-listed gardens of the courthouse, find a fantastic array of hawker-style street food showcasing a perfect mix of Asian flavors. From deep bowls of nutrient-rich soups to delicate smaller plates of dumplings and sushi, the Courthouse Markets are ideal for satisfying all tastes.
As well as a diverse culinary scene, Broome brings a chance to discover some contemporary craft breweries and wineries. Find quirky beers at Matso’s with flavors like cucumber and mint, and berry and lime, and perhaps sample mango wines from the Kanagae Estate, where you can wander along rows and rows of mango trees too. Then there’s the Moontide Distillery, which uses local monsoon rainwater to create their carefully blended gin.
Shopping in Broome
Owing to its long pearling history, one of Broome’s chief commodities is pearl jewelery. You’ll find showrooms across the region that are filled with a beautiful array of jewelery featuring the exquisite mother of pearls that are farmed here.
You could explore the Courthouse Markets for take-home treasures, including local handicrafts and trinkets, and there are a number of galleries with eye-catching photographs, paintings, and other artworks that make for ideal souvenirs.
For more mainstream shopping, Prime West Boulevard is a large indoor shopping center that houses many chain shops, as well as independent shops and restaurants. Find homeware, fashion, beauty, gifts, pharmacies, and more.
Getting around: Broome transport
Broome cruise terminal is around 8km from the main town center, and you’ll find local transfer buses available. Public buses service the entire town, taxis are readily available, or you could even hire a bike or scooter to get around on if it appeals. Broome itself is a fairly small town, however, so you may well decide that you’re happy to walk to the highlights you wish to see.
Broome port facilities
Broome cruise terminal offers basic facilities including toilets and an information kiosk. While you won’t find a wealth of amenities here, it’s easy to get to the town center where you’ll find more conveniences.
Top tips for Broome
As with the rest of Australia, Broome uses the Australian Dollar (AUD). At the time of writing, 1 AUD is around 0.67 USD. Bigger shops and restaurants in Broome accept card payments; however, you may find it useful to carry cash for smaller purchases, especially if you plan on visiting the stalls and street food stands at Broome Courthouse Markets.
Tipping is not expected in this part of Australia. It’s a custom that’s only really become mainstream in some of the country’s bigger cities, and even then, it’s not considered mandatory. In Broome, you could perhaps round up your bill to the nearest whole 5 if you’ve received extra special service.
The weather stays warm throughout the year in Broome, with the coldest months of June and July averaging around 29 degrees Celsius. The hottest months are November and December when it sits at around 34 degrees Celsius. Of more concern may be the rain. The wet season is November to April, when Broome is typically quieter. May to October is the dry season, when tourists from far and wide tend to choose to visit.