A hamlet beach neighbouring a pink lake on Western Australia’s Coral Coast has been ranked runner-up to the 2018 best beach in the country, and takes out best mainland beach in Australia.
Horrocks Beach, approximately 485km north of Perth, was listed second on Brad Farmer’s list of Australia’s 101 Best Beaches for 2018.
Located just north of Geraldton between the towns of Northampton and Kalbarri, the hamlet of Horrocks with 138 permanent residents (Source: 2016 Census Data), was narrowly beaten by Nudey Beach on Fitzroy Island, off the QLD coast for the number 1 spot overall.
Horrocks offers 7 kilometres of coastal and aquatic immersion. Turning off the North-West Highway at Northampton, the undulating hills open to a village encircled by the Bowes River and the Indian Ocean, encrusted by a unique reef system. Frequented by residents of the nearby heritage-listed Northampton, Horrocks is a haven for those wanting to escape the crowds.
The founder of Ocean Care Day and Tourism Australia’s beach ambassador, Mr Brad Farmer, has spent the over 30 year’s independently visiting and reviewing Australia’s 11,761 beaches (with Prof. Andy Short) for the 2018 list.
Farmer, the nation’s leading beach expert, said that Horrocks Beach met his “Triple A Rating” scoring criteria – affordable, accessible and authentic in addition to being a quintessentially Australian beach village, bringing classic coastal characters with a community vibe that is so laid back that thongs are considered dressy.
“I have found no other lagoon setting in Australia quite like Horrocks. It is a safe beach with the most complete number of beach activities.” said Mr Farmer.
Another beach making the Top 10 was Red Bluff at Quobba Station (placing 8th), also found on Australia’s Coral Coast, where the southern section of the 300km Ningaloo Reef begins. With the commencement of Qantas’ direct service from London to Perth in March 2018 and the add-on fare of £35 to Learmonth (Ningaloo’s airport), it is expected that more Europeans will visit Ningaloo and Quobba.
David O’Malley, CEO of Australia’s Coral Coast, said “it is pleasing to see two of Australia’s lesser known beaches being recognised in this way. I would encourage people to visit the region to discover these award-winning beaches, along with many more of our hidden aquatic gems.”
Brad Farmer’s 50 reasons to visit Horrocks
- Pontoon swimming
- Boating and protected moorings
- All water craft sports (SUP/Kayak etc)
- Excellent surf breaks
- Near Port Gregory’s Pink Lake
- Scuba Diving and Snorkelling
- Fresh cray-fishing
- Near shore demersal and deep sea fishing with fish cleaning tables
- Beach cricket
- Yoga on the beach
- Iconic central jetty
- Foreshore is grassed, generous areas, facilities, wheelchair access, generous beach shelters
- Beach wrack (seaweed/kelp – is part of the marine eco system)
- Camping ‘off-the-grid’ at Little Bay
- Coral and intertidal rock platforms for kids to explore
- Spectacular sunsets everyday
- Native bush walks
- 4WD adventure tracks
- Proximity to National Park (Kalbarri)
- History and Heritage of nearby Oakabella Homestead
- Wildflowers (from July – September)
- Whale watching (from July – September)
- Pet-friendly accommodation & beaches
- Birdwatching i.e. ospreys
- Marine life including sea lions, dolphins, sting rays
- Modern Community Centre
- Lit Tennis courts
- Lawn bowls
- 9-hole Golf Course
- Basketball courts
- Wildlife and livestock – kangaroos and sheep roaming paddocks
- Panoramic coastal lookouts
- Quaint General Store with famous fish n’ chips
- Caravan park and Cottages
- Stars and great photography options
- Yarns with salty locals
- See ancient Aboriginal rock art
- Heritage listed Museums at nearby Northampton
- Local arts and crafts
- Three historic Aussie pubs at Northampton
- Family friendly, safe atmosphere
- Affordable accommodation
- Watch local cray boats at sea at sunrise
- 365 days a year great climate
- No dress code and no frills
How to Visit
Qantas and Virgin both fly double-daily from Perth to Geraldton. Horrocks is under a 1 hour drive from Geraldton with car hire available.
Where to Stay
Horrocks Beach Cottages or Caravan Park or Port Gregory Caravan Park (30 minutes). For a wider range of accommodation options for various budgets, stay overnight in Geraldton or Kalbarri (both 1-hour drive).