Set on the banks of the Fitzroy River, 391 kilometres east of Broome, Fitzroy Crossing in Western Australia (WA) is a true outback town.
Crossing the mighty Fitzroy River before the bridge was built was no small undertaking – particularly during the wet season when the river level rises. The original Fitzroy Crossing town site sprung up around the river’s narrowest point in this area and soon became a hub for travellers. The Crossing Inn, still in operation today, was opened on 5th July 1897 by Joseph Blythe as a store and inn to serve drovers, pastoralists and prospectors in the area. The original causeway was built in 1935, and the Old Fitzroy Crossing Post Office and Police Station Group buildings followed in the 1940’s.
With the construction of the new bridge in the 1970’s, the town’s focus shifted south to its current location, but many travellers make the short journey towards the Crossing Inn to see the town’s early beginnings and its pioneer cemetery, as well as the Old Concrete Crossing, which kept the Kimberley accessible in the dry seasons from 1935 until the new high clearance bridge was built in 1974. The old post office building and the memorial to for the Australia Inland Mission Hospital also tells the story of the town's early days.
Windjana Gorge, Geike Gorge, Tunnel Creek and Mimbi Caves
Fitzroy Crossing is a great base to explore Tunnel Creek National Park
and Windjana Gorge National Park
located on the Leopold Downs Fairfield Road, four wheel drive required. Tunnel Creek
is located 112km from Fitzroy Crossing, is Western Australia’s oldest cave system, part of the 350 million year old Devonian Reef system. The 750 metre tunnel is home to bats and stalactites and was used as a hideout late last century by Jandamarra, whose story is both moving and tragic of a man caught between two cultures.
Fitzroy Crossing is also the gateway to the Geikie Gorge National Park
, a spectacular waterway with soaring weathered cliffs and abundant wildlife. Located 20km from town via a sealed road, Geike Gorge is the home to the Balga (freshwater Barramundi), the rare Galwanyi (Leichhardt’s sawfish) and Baya Gawiy (Coach Whip stingray). Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPAW) one hour boat tours are available from May to mid-October. Indigenous tours also offer an excellent insight to local Indigenous history and culture, including bush tucker and medicine.
Mimbi Caves are located 90 km east of Fitzroy Crossing on Mt Pierre Station and is accessible through a tour. The cave system reveals ancient large scale fossilised reefs that are amongst the best preserved in the world. This extraordinary location attracts geologists from all over the world and you can view speleothems, tall slender stalagmites, shawls, flowstones and sparkling calcite crystals formed over millennia. Girloorloo Tours, 100% indigenously owned and operated, provides three hour walking tours out at Mimbi Caves, part of the 350 million year old Devonian Reef system; available in dry season, bookings are essential.
Windjana Gorge National Park is 145km from Fitzroy Crossing; the 7km walk takes you along the open air gorge and back, through the course of the Lennard River. DPAW camping facilities are available during the dry season upon payment of park entry fees. Bungoolee Tours offer walking tours of Tunnel Creek and/or Windjana Gorge with self-drive and bus tours available.
To carve the ultimate Fitzroy Crossing Adventure, call into the Visitor Centre where friendly staff will assist you with detailed information and tour bookings. They also stock an impressive range of souvenirs, local art, jewellery, book exchange, cool drinks, ice creams and coffee. They may even let you in on the best Barra fishing spots!
Fitzroy Crossing Accommodation and Information
Search for Fitzroy Crossing accommodation. Or for more information about tours from Fitzroy Crossing, local attractions and road conditions, contact the Fitzroy Crossing Visitor Centre.