Donelly river and D’Entrecasteaux National Park
Cruising on Donelly river is a great trip to enjoy the pristine D’Entrecasteaux National Park by meandering along the 12 km of Donelly river near Pemberton. Pemberton is a little town in the southwest corner of Western Australia which is known for its stunning natural beauty such as the tall karri trees of Gloucester National Park, including the Gloucester Tree with its lookout point. Also in the park are the Cascades waterfall and Lefroy Brook’s rocky rapids. And just outside town are more giant karris at Warren National Park and vast dunes at Yeagarup Beach. D’Entrecasteaux National Park is located in the Karri Valle near Pemberton.
The cruise on serene and tranguil river
Around 8:30 AM we drove from the place where we stayed, the Hawke Brooks Chalets, to the Pemberton Visitors Center. We bought tickets around AUD $ 65/adult (AUD $ 35/child) and gathered with other passengers a to wait for our guide. At 9:30 the guide picked us up by a coach to the Donnelly River Boat launch. He was very friendly and casual, but also knowledgeable about the local area, flaura and fauna, geography and history of the area. He gave us lots of information on the way to the cruise point. We learned so much before we even reached the area where we boarded the enclosed river ferry.
The river cruise is the only way to enjoy the untouched and diversed eco system of D’Etrecasteaux Nationa Park as it is only accessable by boat. The slow pace cruise on this lovely Donelly river is very relaxing. The river itself is tranguil and serene with reflective clear water, lined with unique West Australia flora which contributing its tannins into the Southern Ocean as it filters through the sand bar at its mouth.
While absorbing information from the guide passengers were enjoying the gradually changing view – from the lush Jarrah and Karri forests, through the Paperbark and wetlands, to the and the limestone cliffs, and finally the majestic Southern Ocean.
It was very interesting to watch how the river which can raise till 2 meters during summer months, only to burst through the sand bar and disgorge into the sea.
At the final destination where the river meets the ocean the boat stopped and the passangers steped out from the boat to enjoy afternoon strall on the beach.