Dampier - Places to See

North West Shelf Project Visitors Centre
The main attraction for visitors is the North West Shelf Project Visitors Centre on Burrup Road which features viewing areas of the plant complete with models and a theatrette where a film of the project is regularly screened. This replaces the bus tours of the works. It is an excellent overview of the scheme which, while hardly being a 'hands on' experience, offers the visitor an opportunity to understand the complexity of the project. The centre looks across at huge green domes which hold vast quantities of liquefied natural gas which is shipped to Japan in LNG carriers. The centre is open from 10.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m., Monday to Friday, from April to October, closing at 1.00 p.m. the rest of the year. There is no need to book but if you need further details contact (08) 9158 8292.

Tours are available of all the local industries. To undertake a two-hour tour of the Hamersley Iron Port Facility (with audio-visual presentation) ring (08) 9144 4600. The tour includes outstanding views of the harbour and the ship-loading facility. Covered shoes and bookings are essential.

The Port
Dampier is the largest tonnage port in Australia. It is possible to visit and inspect the port facilities and view Audio Visual Science in Mining. The tours operate twice daily and times are 9.00 a.m. and 12.00 and bookings can be confirmed by contacting Hamersley Iron on (08) 9143 5364.

The Beach
Dampier isn't all industry. It has beach frontage with an ocean pool, boat ramps, a boating and sailing club and barbecue and picnic facilities by the beaches.

Dampier Archipelago
Dampier promotes itself as the 'Gateway to the Dampier Archipelago'. This collection of 42 uninhabited islands, rocks and keys feature unspoiled sandy beaches, excellent diving, fishing and snorkelling opportunities and offshore coral reefs. Ranging in size from one hectare to 3290 ha (Enderby). All lie within a 45-km radius of Dampier. 25 belong to conservation reserves. Loggerhead, Green, Hawksbill and Flatback turtles nest there are they are also home to 26 bird species, including a couple of tern species which use them for nesting purposes.Bottlenosed dolphins and dugongs live in the offshore waters and humpback whales can be sen from July to September.

Walking on the islands can be revealing and cCmping is permitted under strict conditions on some of the islands for up to five nights. Swimming, fishing and diving off the islands is excellent and local tour operators cater to those interested in reef and deep-water fishing and reef diving. More general tours of the islands are also available.

Reef Action
The Reef Action II is a 12-metre catamaran which offers tours around Dampier Harbour and the Archipelago. They offer tours ranging from a 3 1/2 hour twilight cruise through the islands to more lengthy adventures. From a couple of hours to up to five days is their aim. There information includes the following: "

The Dampier Archipelago
There are 42 islands and rocks lying within a 45 Kilometre radius, and to name but a few, the Angel, Dolphin, Enderby, Rosemary, East and West Intercourse and the wild and beautiful Mallus, all offer some of the most beautiful beaches in the Pilbarra


This is allowed on most Islands, and we can arrange for you and your family to be dropped off with our camping gear and collected a day, 2 days or for the maximum of a week if your would prefer. For as little as $250.00 for one night; a family of four, can enjoy swimming, fishing, surfing, snorkelling, and kayaking on your own private island.

We do not offer this however we will can drop you on one of the islands, for the day, and if you supply the fishing gear, we will lend you some of our camping equipment, such as the BBQ, to cook your sumptuous catch, before returning to Dampier.

Ocean Views
Swimming in and around the islands are schools of Dolphin, Dugons, Turtles, and whales are plentiful during their migration season. On the ocean floor spot hundreds of different types of coral and the fishes that live amongst their beauty. Once you've had enough of combing the ocean floor, resurface, look up into the skies and spot the 26 different species of birds.

Historic Sites
Aboriginal Engravings are found on many of the Islands, and the best examples are found on Enderby and Rosemary. Some new engravings have been found on East and West Intercourse Island. Ruins on West Lewis are believed to be part pf an old pastoral settlement, and there is a remainder of a whaling station to be found on Malus, believed to have been operating between 1870 and 1872. If its pears you?re interested in visit the remainders of a pearling camp, which can be found on Black Hawke Bay. For more information contact reefact@bigpond.net.au

Rock Engravings
There are around 10,000 indigenous rock engravings on the Burrup Peninsula, which extends to the north-east of Dampier.

Red Dog
One of the local characters of note was Red Dog. Born in Paraburdoo in 1971 he travelled throughout the entire region from Perth to Broome to Port Hedland. However, his exceptional homing instinct always returned him to Dampier or Karratha. This kelpie/cattledog cross is honoured with a statue at the town's entrance. A book about him is available by ringing the Karratha Tourist Bureau on (08) 9144 4600.