Coolgardie-Esperance Highway

This article is an itinerary.
Map of Coolgardie–Esperance Highway (shown in red) and surrounding road network in southern Western Australia

Coolgardie - Esperance Highway is located in the Goldfields-Esperance region of Western Australia. It links the goldfields towns of Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie with the coastal town and port of Esperance.


The highway is a bit like the old narrow gauge railway alignment between Coolgardie and Esperance. It has surprise corners, rises and dips that are not expected. It can be very busy up closer to Coolgardie with mining trucks and other traffic. Not to be taken carelessly or without safe driving.

The myths and perpetuated stories about the Goldfields region, and its extension towards the Nullarbor is that it is treeless, and plantless. Nothing can be further from the reality of travelling the Esperance highway: Hardy drought-proof eucalypti and other vegetation make this whole route interesting in that the scrawny trees line the large salt lakes that are in view of the highway show how severe weather conditions has not daunted a range of trees from developing in this harsh climate.


If you have got this far from Perth or Adelaide, there is not much to consider when travelling along this highway. There are some interesting side trips, and they will require a vehicle that is suitable for the rougher 'off-the bitumen' roads that lead to locations in the bush.

At all times, adequate extra fuel, food and drink if for any reason you have to stop for repairs or other unexpected stops, and if you have the equipment, either sat-phones or CB radios are alway worth having if you are going off the beaten track where usual traffic might be one car or truck a week - which can be expected in some of the tracks of this highway.

For the really rough roads, extra spare tyres are always worth it.

Get in

You can get into it from Perth via the South Western Highway from Armadale via Bunbury to Walpole, and then go onto South Coast Highway via Albany to Esperance. By this route you can also go from Bunbury, Albany, Denmark and Walpole to Esperance, and therefore Coolgardie.


Stay safe

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, October 03, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.