Pilbara and Port Hedland Tourist Information
PORT HEDLAND TOURS
BHP Billiton Iron Ore Tour MG 1134 for web
Hop onto a guided tour of BHP Billiton Iron Ore’s Nelson Point facility to watch the bucket wheel reclaimers and ship loaders that dominate Port Hedland’s horizon and gain an understanding of how the mining industry works. BHP Billiton’s iron ore operations cover a complex integrated system of seven inland mining operations, more than 1,000km of rail, stockyards and two separate port facilities through which iron ore churns like lifeblood 24/7. This 45 minute guided bus tour is available on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1PM. The tour costs $45 per person and departs from the Port Hedland Visitor Centre, 13 Wedge Street, Port Hedland. For bookings contact the Port Hedland Visitor Centre at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note we do not offer these tours on days that a cruise ship is docking in port.
BHP Billiton Iron Ore is one of the world’s leading iron ore producers with operations in Australia and Brazil. Their principal iron ore operations are based in the Pilbara region of northern Western Australia. Iron ore is a major component in many modern office towers, including iconic structures around the world. It is also used extensively in motor vehicles, washing machines, refrigerators, ovens and other whitegoods. The tour provides an insight into the workings of this incredible industry, which is buoying our national economy: from the trains that transport the ore from Newman to Port Hedland to enormous bucket wheel reclaimers to the impressive workings of the conveyors and ship loaders as they load their multi-million dollar cargo onto ships bound for developing countries around the world. This is tour not to be missed.
The port area, where bulk carrier vessels of up to 260,000 tonnes and over 230 metres in length glide through a narrow harbour entrance adjacent to the main street. The Port Interpretive Walk running along the Esplanade offers information about the port's history and the resource companies that utilise the facility.
The best views of industry in motion in the harbour can be found at Marrapikurinya Park on the waters' edge in the historic West End. Redbank Bridge is the perfect lookout point for BHP Billiton's trains, some of the longest in the world moving alone the 426km-long railway, which transport iron ore from Mount Whaleback in Newman to the port. The trains can reach up to 3km long. This spot also offers spectacular views of Dampier Salt's towering stockpile which is best viewed at sunset.
Port Hedland Local History and Town Tour
A new tour that caters to Port Hedland locals and visitors alike, is the Port Hedland Local History and Town Tour. The tour is guided by a local historian and visits monuments like the World War II Rifle Range, where spent .303 slugs can still be found, the Aboriginal/Afghan Water Source used by Afghan camel operators in the 1920’s and the 1946 Strike Sculpture which commemorates the protests by Pilbara Aboriginal pastoral workers in the 1940’s for better wages and working conditions.
This 45minute guided bus tour through Port Hedland’s rich local history is available on Mondays and Fridays at 1PM. The tour costs $35 per person and departs from the Port Hedland Visitor Centre, 13 Wedge Street, Port Hedland. For bookings contact Port Hedland Visitor Centre at email@example.com
Tracing the local cultural heritage and history of this most unusual town, the bus tour will follow the footsteps of the first European settlers by visiting the town’s heritage sites. Led by local historian and life-long resident Julie Hunt, this tour offers the opportunity to learn the human face to a town far-more diverse than it may first appear; from the commemorative lookout honouring the sinking of the SS Koombana more than one hundred years ago to the multi-cultural heritage and Indigenous links to the community both historic and today.
Eighty Mile Beach
Port Hedland marks the southwestern terminus of Eighty Mile Beach. This beach stretches some 80 miles along the West Australian coast up towards Broome; its brilliant aqua and azure waters meet stark white beaches.
From either direction, the beach seems to go on forever. Port Hedland makes a great stopover point or base for exploring the National Parks and other attractions of the Pilbara.
Other links of interest are:
The Northwest Festival
The Northwest Festival is held in Port Hedland each August. It is a musical festival with great bands.
Markets in Hedland
The Cruiseship markets and the West End Markets are held regularly. See Port Hedland Visitor Infomation Centre for details
Public Street Art
Millstream Chichester National Park is an oasis in the desert, nestled within the chocolate brown rocks of the Chichester Range, dotted with spinifex and snappy gums. Permanent pools are fed by springs that draw water from the underground aquifer within porous dolomite rock. The Millstream area has been a sacred land since well before the arrival of Europeans to the area, and the Yinjibarndi people still gather here as the traditional custodians of their country, which stretches from the Hamersley Range foothills and Fortescue Valley in the south to the Chichester Range escarpment in the north.
Visit the Millstream Chichester National Park website
Karijini National Park
Explore the wild, rugged beauty of Karijini National Park, with its spectacular natural gorges, waterfalls and pools perfect for hiking and walking. To the south is the enchanting Millstream Chichester National Park, bounded by the spinifex lined Chichester Ranges with the Fortescue River coursing through creating natural water flows and freshwater pools perfect for swimming.
Visit the Karijini National Park website
Port Hedland's uniquely beautiful beaches and mangroves are home to an abundance of fish and other wildlife. Off the coast of Port Hedland you can see whales, bottlenose dolphins and sharks.
Flatback turtles in Port Hedland, WAFlatback sea turtles nest only on Australian beaches and they have the shortest migratory range of all sea turtles.
From October to March Hedland's beaches become home to hundreds of Flatback Turtles (Natator depressus) as they nest and their younglings hatch. You can view the turtles or sign up to monitor their movements through the Care for Hedland Environmental Association.
Flatback sea turtles nest only on Australian beaches and they have the shortest migratory range of all sea turtles.
Care for Hedland's Turtle program provides much needed monitoring, awareness and conservation for these local threatened species. This program is a part of a wider turtle monitoring project encompassing nesting rookeries from Shark Bay in the south, up to the Kimberly. Guided evening tours operate for anyone to watch the turtles nesting whilst following the turtle watchers code of conduct. Nesting season is from October to January. Hatchling season is in December to March.
Contact Care for Hedland to find out more.
During the winter months in Port Hedland you will be able to find a multitude of native wildflowers. You could make an adventure of wildflower viewing by following the Pilbara Wildflowers Trail by road through the region. July to September is the time to experience this beautiful natural occurrence unique to the Pilbara. Look in the right places and you will find the unmistakable Sturt's desert pea, Mulla mulla and the tall majestic Ashburton pea as well as up to 65 species of the Acacia (wattle).
STAIRCASE TO THE MOON
The Staircase to the Moon is a natural phenomenon that occurs only in the North West of Australia between March and October. During the full moon this region experiences such dramatic tidal changes throughout the day that enable the pockets of water caught in the sand ripples to reflect the natural rising colour of the moon. Viewed at full moon on a still evening this light creates what looks like a golden staircase leading to the moon.
The times for the rising moon are are also displayed monthly at the Port Hedland Visitors Centre. The best vantage spot is next to the Cooke Point Caravan Park (Goode Street) in Port Hedland. There is a viewing deck set up especially for this natural occurrence. But be on time as it looks best only for about 10 minutes!
Note: A super full moon occurs when the moon's closest to the Earth, during this time the moon may seem bigger and brighter.
Hedland Community Info
Some contacts that guests are often interested in!
Raika's Family Restaurant - Address: 1 Hedditch St, South Hedland Phone: 08 9172 1664
Port Hedland Directory contains a list of businesses in Port Hedland
Care for Hedland contact details
Program Coordinator: Bridgette Poulton / Mob 0488 907 260
Turtle Monitoring Program (September-April)
Mob 0447 907 661
Hedland Garden Club (March-October)
Mob 0447 907 661