Thursday, 28 March 2013

Perth to Coral Bay - Part 3


We woke up early to be able to be in Monkey Mia, (21km away) for the 8 a.m dolphin feeding.

Monkey (from a pearling boat called Monkey or after pet monkeys owned by the Malay pearlers who lived in the area) Mia (aboriginal word for shelter or home) is located 800km north of Perth. The reserve is within the Shark Bay Marine Park and is a World Heritage Site.

Of course the main attraction of Monkey Mia is the daily feeding of the bottlenose dolphins that have been coming to shore for over 40 years. In the 1960's a fisherman and his wife began feeding the dolphins when returning from sea with their catch.
As news of the dolphins visits spread, the visitors started coming. In 1985 an information centre was built and in 1988 roads, carparks and facilities were built.
The Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) supervises the process and manage the Marine Park. In 1982 researchers started a lab to study the dolphin's behaviour and biology.
The visitors centre also shows movies about the dolphins and history of the area

My daughter and I in front of the entrance

The visitors gather at the edge of the water and trained rangers in the water give talks about the dolphins. Suddenly a couple of dolphins swim close to the rangers. The rangers pick a couple of visitors to go further into the water to feed the dolphins; they take a fish out of a bucket and the dolphin takes the fish from their hand. A truly magical experience, and this is all free!

The day we were there, there were only 8 dolphins around, but this number varies daily. Of course the rangers know their names and can identify them just by looking at their tail fin.
They get fed up to three times each the morning, but only the same 5 dolphins get fed. They only get 1/3 of their required daily requirement, so that they can also fish for themselves and not just rely on their carers. That morning we got to see them come close to shore 3 times.
Three of the dolphins swimming around

A volunteer feeds a dolphin

A ranger talking about the dolphins

The bucket of fish for the dolphins

another volunteer feeding a dolphin

Hurry up, I want my fish....

Daily recordings about the dolphins - we were there Tuesday 12th, up to 8 dolphins showed up.
There are also a few Pelicans around trying to steel the fish meant for the dolphins, so they get lured to the sand and given a few fish too, so the dolphin feeding goes undisturbed.

Emus were also on the beach
A few Emus were also around on the beach and around the restaurant trying to steal food from the unwary.
After the second dolphin feeding, we went to the Boughshed cafe/restaurant, right there on the beach and ordered a continental breakfast that only cost $15 each. 
We sat down on some comfortable wicker couches outdoor and enjoyed the breakfast, the lovely beach and sunny weather. Of course we had to keep an eye on our food as the Emus try to stick their beak through the fence, or if you leave your food unattended a seagull will sweep and take something from your plate.

The Boughshed Restaurant
Monkey Mia beach
Other activities you can do in Monkey Mia are:  organized four wheel drive trips, Aboriginal cultural tours, fishing tours and of course swimming in the beautiful clear waters of the bay.
Hope you enjoyed seeing the photos of the dolphins.
I was thrilled to have been able to see them close by, although I wish I had been chosen to give them a fish so I could be even closer. Maybe next time...


  1. Monkey Mia is absolutely beautiful. I've been there and would love to go back. I hope you enjoyed your trip xx

  2. Oh how special that must have been! You have some awesome photos - I love pelicans,and have never seen an emu. It looks as though Monkey Mia is going to be put onto my bucket list! You and your daughter look like sisters :)

  3. Lucky you, I agree it's a beautiful area. I would love to go back someday...but maybe fly to Exmouth and rent a car. It's just so far...

  4. Hi Gill, I agree that Monkey Mia should be on a bucket list.
    I'm so happy I got to see the dolphins close up.
    Are there no Emus in Queensland?
    Thanks for the compliment.

  5. Que delícia! Adoraria tocar um golfinho!

  6. So de estar perto deles foi uma experiencia fabulosa Monica.

  7. Fantásticas as fotos dos golfinhos! Nunca estive assim tão perto de nenhum, embora tenha avistado imensos, principalmente em Zanzibar.

  8. Beautifully shown Sami, Monkey Mia is such a fantastic place, haven't been for years but all of a sudden I feel like it would be good to go again, love the dolphins.

  9. It should be called paradise. What an amazing place. Feeding the dolphins is so awesome. I didn't know there were places like this in the world. Your photos are fabulous. Thanks for sharing. :)

  10. Lovely, lovely photos, Sami! I felt I was there too. Thank you so much for sharing.
    HAPPY EASTER!! :-)

  11. Maravilhoso! Adora alimentar golfinhos, assim de perto e tocar-lhes. Deve ter sido uma experiência daquelas!
    Parece que na Amazónia há golfinhos vermelhos, uma espécie diferente. Vou lá daqui a um mês, vamos ver se tenho a sorte de poder chegar perto deles.

  12. Oh my lord! Now I do not want to just visit Australia, I want to move there!

  13. All the photographs are beautiful and spectacular.I am delighted to see these.Thanks for showing us the best part of Australia.

  14. Thanks Evalina - start saving up for a trip.
    Hi Ella - I am enjoying sharing this wonderful trip.

  15. Which one is the daughter????

    Sami, these are gorgeous!

  16. Thanks Robyn. I'm the one in the purple dress, you just can't see the wrinkles in the distance...


I would love to hear from you, please leave a comment.