Either because we’re suckers for punishment or love a big list, we’ve once again been hard at it working on another bucket list-style mega list for you to work through. After showcasing 70 of the best wild swimming spots around Perth and Western Australia (check it HERE), we now turn attention towards our beautiful beaches.
It may seem trite to talk about WA and beaches, but to be fair it’s one of our biggest draw-cards and there is HEAPS of them. To make things interesting (and hopefully generate a bit of lighthearted discussion amongst you fine peeps), we’ve also decided to rank them from 50-1! So have fun, and tear us a new one in the comments if you think we’re off the mark.
P.S. yes there’s a whole bunch that didn’t make the list, but we can’t give alllll the best beaches away now, can we?
P.P.S when you’re visiting these beautiful locations, please remember to leave no trace, and treat these beautiful spaces with the respect they deserve.
50. Mullaloo Beach (Perth)
The jewel of the north! Mullaloo Beach (or MULLAZ to the locals), is a lovely long white stretch of sand that’s the go-to for our northern suburbs family. There’s an epic beach path that runs along the whole stretch so you can find a spot to yourself, plus plenty of amenities on the grass at Mullaloo Beach proper.
49. Shell Beach
One of the most unique beach-going experiences in WA (see also: on Earth), Shell Beach in the Shark Bay World Heritage Area is made up of billions of shells from the Shark Bay cockle. Going down 10m at some points and running for over 70km, it’s a beach like few others around the world. On calm days the hyper-saline water is also great for floating around in.
48. Gnarabup Beach
While Margaret River Mainbreak is all about huge swells and wild surfers, further south you’ll find the much calmer waters of Gnarabup Beach. It’s the most popular public beach in the area and also the main launching spot for boats. There’s a pontoon in summer, and ample opportunity to catch a fish or two if they’re biting. It’s also home to one of the most loved cafe’s in southwest WA – The White Elephant (pictured below).
Photo by @driftwoodphotography_mr
47. Cape Leveque (Kimberley)
“Where the red dirt meets the sea” – Cape Leveque lies on the tip of the Dampier Peninsula to Broome’s north, making it one of the most remote corners of the world. Stunning red cliffs, brilliant turquoise blue waters, the Beagle Bay Aboriginal Community’s historic church… It’s an explorer’s paradise – you just need a 4WD or tour to really get amongst it, which puts it a little further down the list.
46. Sandy Cape (Jurien Bay)
Sandy Cape National Park is a quick 10km north of Jurien Bay, and the closest beach to Perth where you can legally camp on the beach (that isn’t a Caravan Park). It’s a first-come, first-serve deal, although with plenty of sites available you should be fine outside of peak holiday periods. Fishing and diving are your go-to activities, and having a 4WD will help you explore a little further north and south.
45. Conto Springs Beach (Boranup)
Conto Springs Beach is not only a beautiful beach in its own right, it’s also home to Conto Campground, with over 100 sites nestled amongst shady peppermint woodlands in Boranup, 20 minutes south of Margaret River. It’s mostly accessible with 2WDs, and has some stellar hiking trails (jump on the Cape To Cape track here) to go with surfing, fishing or just putting ya feet up and relaxing.
44. Smiths Beach (Yallingup)
South around the headland from Yallingup mainbreak you’ll find popular tourist destination Smiths Beach, packed with visitors year round. With a couple of popular surfing spots along the white, sandy stretch of coast, it’s home base for a lot of visitors during the warmer months.
43. Paradise Beach (Coral Bay)
Of course Coral Bay itself is a stunning beach in its own right, but if you’re chasing something away from the tourists seek out Paradise Beach. Clear waters and bright white sand plus a huge variety of fish make it an excellent snorkelling proposition, but also just a lovely beach to spend the day. If it’s the right time of year you might even catch sight of a whale shark wandering close to shore.
42. Trigg Beach (Perth)
Trigg is Perth’s mecca of surfing (which is weird given the banks are useless most of the year) and as soon as the swell is up (another over a foot) you’ll find just about every man, woman and their dog at Trigg for a wave. Fortunately it’s a long enough stretch of sand you can usually find a bit of solitude somewhere along the way.
Photo by Larkshots Photography
41. Back Beach (Lancelin)
Nothin’ beats pulling up to the beach in your 4WD, flipping open the boot and throwing out the surf boards straight into some fun waves. That’s literally how it works at Lancelin’s beaut Back Beach. You basically fall out the back of your fourby into fun, rippable waves year round.
40. Lucky Bay (Kalbarri)
About 30km south of Kalbarri you’ll find Lucky Bay, a popular spot for beach campers and those who fancy a bit of adrenalin on their coastal stays. Thanks to an outer reef along the length of the bay it’s a great for swimming and snorkelling spot, while the dunes provide protection from the wind and plenty of fun for motorbike and dune buggy enthusiasts.
39. South Beach (Fremantle)
A mainstay for the Freo massive, South Beach has a pontoon, basketball court and plenty of amenities/shaded grass areas if you’re really looking to settle in for the day. There’s a good chance you’ll find some backpacker types kicking a hacky sack around or strumming the acoustic guitar, but if that’s not your bag just head a little further south to CY O’Connor Beach or Coogee.
38. Blossoms Beach (Bremer Bay)
Probably Bremer Bay’s most popular beach, especially amongst families as its generally quite shallow along the stretch. Great spot for some cruisy surfing action and for max relaxing by the water.
Photo by Jade Hamilton.
37. Sandy Bay (Exmouth)
Situated within the Ningaloo Marine Park, Sandy Bay is an excellent fishing spot. It’s also popular amongst wind and kite surfers when the winds come up, but if you get there early you’ll enjoy the crystal clear waters typical of this area, along with a few shady tables to picnic on.
36. Little Boat Beach (Bremer Bay)
What Little Boat Beach lacks in size it more than makes up for with room for activities (which doesn’t particularly make sense but stick with us)! Scuba diving, snorkelling, fishing and swimming are all part of the fun, and conditions permitting it’s also where people can launch their boats – so keep an eye out!
35. Wylie Bay (Esperance)
Another one for the 4WD fam out there – head forth towards the softer sands of Wylie Bay and its spectacular rock formations. The sand dunes are popular amongst sandboarders, 4WDs and motorbikes, plus if the conditions are right surfers will find a wave or two.
34. Scarborough Beach (Perth)
Probably Perth’s most populated beach, the past couple of years have seen it transform into a true tourism destination with a revamped foreshore featuring a swimming pool, skate park, huge kid’s playground and a heap of bars and cafés along the strip. The sunset markets on Thursday nights are a winner, and it’s Perth’s go-to for a dirty old Sunday Session. The surf can get descent here, but you’ll find a better wave (along with even more people) a bit further north.
33. Eleven Mile Beach (Esperance)
Ultimate beach babes will love the lagoon in – and pastel hues of – Eleven Mile Beach. Sheltered from the prevailing winds, it’s a reliable fall-back plan on breezy days and a good one to go to late in the afternoon. As the name suggests, this slice of paradise is located 11 miles out of the town centre, so pack a picnic and plenty of water.
32. Eagle Bay Beach (Dunsborough)
Another section of Dunsborough-area beach protected from the south-westerlies, access is slightly more limited than some of the other beaches in the area, so if you’re will to do a bit of exploring you might be able to find a little patch all to yourself. And its well worth it if you do.
31. Yallingup Beach (Yallingup)
A mini version of Margaret River’s famed Mainbreak, the waves still get huge once you get out past the rock pools of Yallingup Lagoon. A little further north you’ll find the white sands of Rabbits Beach, a casual swimming spot in summer turned rough-and-tumble surf break in big winter swells.
30. Koombana Bay (Bunbury)
Koombana Bay is a stretch of beach just a couple of clicks away from Bunbury in our state’s southwest, and is one of only a handful of places around the world where you can encounter dolphins in the wild. A pod of over a hundred wild bottlenose dolphins frequents the bay on a daily basis, and thanks to the Dolphin Discovery Centre now located there, you can have the opportunity to meet and greet them out on the water, or in the shallows of the bay. Read our full guide here.
29. City Beach (Perth)
Over the years City Beach has developed into a strong rival alongside Cottesloe and Scarborough as Perth’s most popular beach, and fair enough too. It marks the perfect geographical midway point between those two tourist hotspots, and with plenty of shady grassed areas perfect for people-watching picnics, it’s the kinda place you can spend all day. With a few new restaurants, a nice boardwalk, huge new surf life saving club and even a couple of waves if the conditions are right, it really is one of Perth’s finest.
28. Blue Haven (Esperance)
While this list is pretty choccers with Esperance beaches, the thing about ’em is they can get pretty blown out a lot of the time. Enter Blue Haven – offering save haven from prevailing winds, brilliant blue waters and a bit of snorkelling fun too.
27. Blue Holes (Kalbarri)
Blue Holes is one of the Coral Coast’s best – and most fun – snorkelling spots. Beautifully protected waters house an incredible array of rock pools that are not only filled with marine life, but great fun to float around in.
26. Shelley Beach (Denmark)
Located amongst the rugged wilderness of West Cape Howe National Park is Shelley Beach, which is without a doubt one of the most beautiful beaches in the region. It’s the only area of this spectacular coastal landscape that can be accessed in a two wheel drive, making it a favourite stop for beach-lovers, campers, anglers and bushwalkers. The huge granite boulders that frame Shelley Beach were formed over 1,100 million years ago and provide shelter for swimming and fishing.
25. Coogee Beach (Coogee)
Keep going south past Fremantle to the white sandy shores of Cockburn’s Coogee Beach. With a just-the-right-size jetty for jumping off (or fishing), a huge grassed area for picnics, a shore-based shipwreck to snorkel over and set against the gothic backdrop of the abandoned Freo power station, it’s a little southern gem oft-forgotten about along our glorious coast line. Check our full guid here.
24. Eighty Mile Beach (Broome/Port Hedland)
Eighty Mile Beach between Port Headland and Broome is a glorious stop-over point along our northern coast, with great fishing and of course WA’s famous sunsets. The campgrounds at Eighty Mile Beach Caravan Park offer around 200 sites, most of them powered, with cabins also available.
23. Bunker Bay (Dunsborough)
Bunker Bay makes for a tantalising proposition for a down south swim thanks to its sheltered location taking you away from the region’s prevailing south westerly winds. It also doesn’t get much swell (although occasionally gets a decent winter wave when everywhere else is out of control), so its placid waters and long white beach are a popular choice. It’s also got some great little snorkelling spots just offshore, and plenty of amenities close by.
22. Injidup Beach (Yallingup)
A beautiful beach in its own right, Indjidup Beach is not only a popular surfing spot, it’s also home to one of the southwest’s most grammed locations, the Injidup Natural Spa. A natural rock formation protected from the wilds of the Indian Ocean, it can be a relaxing – if not a little crowded – spot to chill on a warm summer’s day. Read our full guide here.
Photo by @scottslawinski
21. The Basin (Rottnest Island)
Probably Rotto’s most popular beach thanks to its sheltered location, proximity to the townsite and great snorkelling, it gets super busy during peak periods. It’s definitely worth a stop to admire, but if you’re keen for some quiet time better to get on ya bike and do some exploring.
Photo by Salty Wings
20. Point Possession
Just a stone’s throw away from the centre of Albany but still feeling like completely isolated on a deserted beach, Point Possession offers up a unique experience for visitors along with some stunning scenery that Albany is famous for. There’s delightful 5km walking trail that won’t challenge you too hard, and is pet friendly (with a lead). Read our full guide here.
19. Castle Rock Bay (Dunsborough)
Castle Rock Bay used to be a bit of a locals only secret, but in recent years has become a popular alternative to Meelup Beach around the corner. It’s a tranquil small slice of beach, sheltered from predominate southwesterly winds and swells down south, making it the perfect spot for an arvo on the water. Read our full guide here.
18. Misery Beach (Albany)
A beach that will bring you anything but what its name implies, Misery Beach is a relatively hidden gem around Albany that will provide some respite from prevailing winds in the area. It’s only a couple of hundred metres long, bordered by dramatic headlands and steep vegetation that are also worth exploring for some excellent views.
Photo by Larkshots Photography
11. Leighton Beach (Fremantle)
The long, white strip between Cott and Port Beach is arguably Perth’s best pooch-friendly stretch of sand, with stunning, clear blue water and dog spotting for days. It’s low setting behind some steep dunes provides a bit of shelter from stiff easterlies, but honestly we’re just suckers for a great dog beach, and this is it for Perth.
16. Little Salmon Bay (Rottnest Island)
Little Salmon is a little snorkeller’s paradise, with a fun little 700m trail, crystal clear turquoise water, pristine reefs and heaps of little fish to spot. Get down early if you can to avoid the bus crowds. Our friend Life Of Py has a great wrap of the place here.
15. Twilight Bay Beach (Esperance)
For some of the great southern’s whitest sand and clearest blue waters, it’s hard to go past Twilight Bay. A popular picnic spot, the rugged granite outcrops just off the beach make for a captivating day at the beach.
14. Peaceful Bay (Denmark)
The calm waters of Peaceful Bay make it a great family beach for swimming, snorkelling, fishing and boating. And the long stretches of white sand make it the perfect beach in the region for those in the mood for a seaside stroll. On its doorstep, there’s the privately owned Peaceful Bay Caravan Park which provides powered and un-powered sites close to the beach and boat launching areas of Peaceful Bay. Pro-tip: Make sure you visit Peaceful Bay Fish & Chips where they’ll make you fresh fish according to whatever was caught on the day!
13. Monkey Mia (Shark Bay)
Monkey Mia is part of the Shark Bay Marine Park, a World Heritage Site made up of red dirt dunes, long white beaches and some of the most marine life-rich waters in WA. Its main attraction is of course the bottlenose dolphins, which have been coming up to the shore and interacting with humans for over 50 years. While in the past visitors were able to feed and touch the visiting dolphins, it’s now a little more restricted and supervised, though no less exhilarating. Read our full guide here.
12. Cable Beach (Broome)
There’s no better way to end the day than watching the sun set over the Indian Ocean, and there’s no better place in Broome to do so than Cable Beach. With 22 kilometres of pristine white sand and turquoise water, it’s perfect for swimming and spending the afternoon on the beach.
17. Greens Pool (Denmark)
A 15-minute drive west of Denmark’s centre will get you to Greens Pool – a beautiful, white sandy beach located in the William Bay National Park. Greens Pool is almost completely sheltered from the waves of the Great Southern Ocean by the rounded rock boulders typical to this area, making it a great swimming beach for the whole family.
10. Hellfire Bay (Esperance)
Jeez they’ve got it good down in Esperance, and Hellfire Bay is another perfect park-up spot with calmer conditions than some other beaches around the place. It’s got great picnicking facilities, including toilets, barbecues and large shelters with tables, and is incredibly photogenic.
9. Hamelin Bay Beach (Hamelin Bay)
Hamelin Bay used to be a small port servicing timber mills of the southwest between Cape Leeuwin and Cape Naturaliste, but turns out the waters were too difficult to navigate (and as such there’s a heap of wrecks off the coast in the area). Nowadays it’s a tourism hotspot thanks to its beautiful beach with the potential for excellent snorkelling, diving, fishing and of course, intimate moments with stingrays sometimes as big as 2m across – and it’s that reason alone that puts Hamelin Bay high up on the list. Read our full guide here.
8. Cottesloe Beach (Perth)
While the Cottesloe mafia may already be planning a hit on us for not having this one higher on the list, we feel like #8 ain’t too shabby for the WA icon. Sneak down during a late season afternoon easterly for one of those magical sunsets usually reserved for the locals only. Park up for a picnic on the grassy knolls, hit up drinking mainstays the Ocean Beach Hotel or Cottesloe Beach Hotel for a wine/pint, or grab a bite at one of plenty of top shelf restaurants along the stretch. You know the deal!
7. Parakeet Bay (Rottnest Island)
Look, Rotto is positively bursting with stunning beaches, with somewhere definitely out of the wind no matter which way it’s blowing. But where most tourists get as far up as the Basin, if you keep heading further west you’ll get to Parakeet and Little Parakeet, perfect if you’re looking for at least a little more privacy.
Photo by Larkshots Photography
6. Elephant Rocks (Denmark)
Elephant Rocks is a picturesque, sheltered cove featuring a series of exposed rocks that from several angles resembles a herd of elephants. Like neighbouring Greens Pool, Elephant Rocks has its own car park when you get to William Bay National Park. The more adventurous can descend the staircase between the rocks and make their way to the Cove, one of the most unique beach-going experiences in WA (and why it ranks so high) – just get down early before the tourists roll up. Read our full guide here.
5. Meelup Beach (Dunsborough)
Dunsborough’s pride and joy, it’s hard to resists the bright white sands and crystal clear turquoise waters of Meelup Beach. It’s ready and willing for the multitude of visitors who stop in, featuring picnic areas under shady trees, barbecues, change rooms and toilets. Pro-tip: Cast your net a little wider around this area to find some more solitude.
4. Lucky Bay (Esperance)
One of the world’s most iconic beaches, Lucky Bay is the centrepiece among many of Esperance’s stunning white sandy beaches. In recent years the town of Esperance has put some serious effort into upgrading the beach’s facilities to accommodate new arrivals, and we’re all the better for it. It doesn’t get much more Aussie than hanging out with kangaroos on the beach, and for that reason alone it comes in a very respectable fourth on this list. Read our full guide here.
3. Two Peoples Bay (Albany)
One of the most stunning stretches of beach around Albany, Two Peoples Bay is a 35km trip east of the town and you’ll want to give yourself plenty of time to explore and enjoy the cove. There’s a scenic heritage trail that’s only about a two-hour round trip with plenty of stunning lookout spots. It’s also where you’ll find a couple of beaches that deserve high spots on this list in their own right – Waterfall Beach and Little Beach.
Photo by Larkshots Photography
2. Wharton Beach (Esperance)
With squeaky white sand and impossibly blue water, Wharton Beach is possibly the best in Australia. It’s located about 100km out of Esperance, so while it’s popular for day trips, you may want to stay the night at the adjoining Duke of Orleans Bay Caravan Park. This beauty has a nice wave for budding surfers and great snorkelling along the headland.
1. Turquoise Bay (Exmouth)
Regularly voted as one of the best beaches in Australia (let alone just this state), Turquoise Bay is your gateway to the famed Ningaloo Reef and hard not to put atop this list. Long, white sandy beaches roll into some of the most crystal clear waters in the country, laying home to vibrant coral garden beds easily accessed just a short swim off the beach. It’s “drift” along the reef is world famous – jump in at the southern end, let the current take you along the reef and then jump out at the sand bar. Read our full guide here.
Cover photo of Little Beach in Two Peoples Bay