Sunday, May 01, 2011

Pining for the Pinnacles and pink and grey galahs

The Pinnacles, north of Perth

When people come to Perth as tourists, they're often "instructed" to visit the Pinnacles. This means you have to drive north of Perth for about three hours, turn left towards the tiny town of Cervantes, and then come across this yellow desert full of strange column-shaped rocks.

Unfortunately, lots of tourists do it on a day trip, and that means they spend by far the majority of the day in a bus and a matter of minutes exploring some of these beautiful places. Don't do it! The Pinnacles and the area around it are really magnificent places to visit but you need to take the time to explore, relax, and generally not expect to see ten thousand tourist sites in one day. Western Australia's too big for that!

Pink and grey galahs at the Pinnacles
The last time I visited was with my sister-in-law and her husband from Switzerland, a great trip (despite the rare cloudy weather) because we arrived in the middle of the afternoon and spent several hours wandering through the Pinnacles area, venturing far from where the tourist buses were briefly depositing their charges before loading them back on again. They'd also just opened the new Visitors' Centre, a spot I highly recommend. We stayed overnight in Cervantes and didn't feel rushed or busy. And that's the way you really should see the Pinnacles, I promise.

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