What to Expect When Visiting the Kimberley after 2023 Flooding

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After a period of intense flooding in the Kimberley region, it’s important for anyone planning to visit the area to be aware of what they can expect. Exercise caution and flexibility when making travel plans and follow directions from Main Roads WA. Here is an overview of what you should expect when visiting the Kimberley after 2023 flooding.

What You Need to Know About The Flooding:

The flooding in the Kimberley region was caused by record-breaking rains during the 2023 monsoon season. While it is heartbreaking to witness an area so heavily damaged by nature, there is thankfully relief on its way. As water levels recede and roads become safe to travel on again, more and more of this beautiful area will become accessible once more. In fact, many areas are already open and ready for exploration!

Main Roads WA Kimberley Flood Response – 30-Jan-2023 – Conditions on Great Northern Highway Willare

Exploring Responsibly:

It is important to remember that while much of the area has been affected by flooding. Take Broome, a popular tourist hotspot, which remains untouched and welcomes visitors with open arms. It is certainly possible to visit Broome and other surrounding unharmed gems while still exploring responsibly. Help out those who have been affected by contributing your time or resources to those impacted by the flooding.

What parts of the Kimberley are open to the Public?

East Kimberley:

The East Kimberley parks are gearing up for an incredible season this year, as they prepare to welcome the public and commercial tour operators with open arms. Visitors can once again access parts of Drysdale River National Park, Purnululu (Bungle Bungles) National Park, Mirima National Park and other sites throughout the region. The aftermath of the wet season rains has infused a burst of life, providing a visual treat for visitors. The now-fuller and more powerful waterfalls serve as an awe-inspiring reminder of the sheer majesty and beauty of nature. The landscape, adorned with the greenest hues, is truly enchanting in the 2023 dry season – potentially making it the best we’ve seen in years! This is a promising time for travellers looking for an adventure through Australia’s northwest, as it marks a return to business as usual for commercial tour operators who bring much needed revenue into regional communities.

Melina Keil – Purnululu National Park – 2022
Melina Keil – Kununurra – 2022
Melina Keil – Galvans Gorge Gibb River Road – 2022

Closed for the 2023 Dry Season:

Unfortunately, due to significant flood damage and post-flood visitor safety risks at Danggu Geikie Gorge National Park and Bandilngan (Windjana Gorge) National Park, they will remain closed until 2024. The national parks are jointly managed by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions and Bunuba Traditional Owners. They have requested time for Country to heal and for those who speak for Country to reconnect with flood-affected areas.

Lets Escape Together – Windjana Gorge – 2020

West Kimberley:

Those wishing to experience the natural beauty of the West Kimberley can check out local access roads in order to visit some of these incredible sites. Keep up to date with the latest roadworks, alerts, road closers and detours on the Main Roads WA Travel Map. Seek information about national park closers and alerts via Parks and Wildlife Service Park Alerts.

What To Expect When Visiting the Area:

Road Closures and Delays:

Due to the extensive flooding, there are likely to be road closures most likely around the Fitzroy River floodplain. Main Roads WA will keep up-to-date information about which roads are closed, so make sure you check their website before making any plans. It’s also important to remember that even if a road is open, there may still be delays due to repair work or other factors. Prepare for any impromptu delays and give yourself plenty of time.

Alternative Routes and Destinations: 

If your intended route or destination has been affected by the flooding, consider taking alternative routes or looking for alternative destinations in order to avoid further complications. There are still plenty of places worth visiting in the Kimberley region that have not been directly affected by the floods. Do your research and find out which areas are safe for travel before setting out on your journey.

Be Patient and Flexible: 

It goes without saying that floods cause significant disruption to daily life in affected areas. It’s important that travellers show patience and flexibility during this time. Repairs could take months or even years to complete, so don’t expect everything to be back up and running as normal right away. Locals will need time to rebuild their homes, businesses, and lives after such a major event!

The best way you can help the Kimberley right now is to support local communities and keep your bookings for 2023. Popular tourism hotspots like Broome, Derby and Kununurra are ready-and-waiting to welcome visitors for the upcoming tourist season.


Visiting the Kimberley will still be an incredible experience following 2023 flood – just make sure you exercise caution, plan ahead with alternative routes/destinations if necessary, display some patience and flexibility with your itinerary, and follow advice from Main Roads WA when travelling in this part of Australia. By doing this you can ensure that both you and those living in the area remain safe during your travels!


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