As part of Australia’s Coral Coast, Coral Bay is a tiny reef resort settlement located at the southern tip of the Ningaloo Marine Park.

Coral Bay is like a picture-perfect painting of a seaside town – sand so white, water so blue and ochre dust so orange, you’d think the townsfolk had computer-enhanced the colours. Coral Bay is a popular tourist destination especially during school holidays. Its white-sandy beaches are a haven for backpackers and families alike, while the clear blue waters of the Indian Ocean are perfect for snorkelling and scuba diving.

The tiny beachcomber community of Coral Bay is made up of a cluster of dive shops, backpacker lodges and a low-key resort. The township is so small that it consists of only one street which leads to the white-sand beach from where you can swim and snorkel on the reef offshore.

Coral Bay has no shire services; private owners supply its electricity and water (not all taps provide desalinated water for drinking), but there are plans to establish Coral Bay as a town and develop tourism here in order to sustain the increasing number of visitors.

Coral Bay’s main shopping centre on Robinson Street has an ATM, newsagent and internet access in the ‘visitor centres’ (which the tour-operator booking offices like to call themselves).

 

History of Coral Bay

The first Europeans to set foot in the area were the crew of the schooner Maud that landed in 1884. By 1896 a town site reserve was gazetted to preserve the local jetty and storage facility. In 1915 the town was officially named “Mauds Landing”; it played a pivotal role in the development of the North West region acting as a supply depot for ingoing and outgoing goods. In 1968, Coral Bay was formally settled and was named after a hotel that had been established in the area.

 

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