Broke Inlet is the only large estuary in the South-West that has not been significantly altered, either by developments along its shores or within its catchment area.
Lying at the eastern end of the dEntrecasteaux National Park, it is a large, shallow estuary, linked to the ocean by a narrow seasonally open channel that passes through high ridges of windblown sand dunes.
Sandy beaches along its shores are interspersed with low, rocky headlands of gneiss. The gneissic basement projects above water level in many places to form numerous small islands.
Access to Broke Inlet is available via Broke Inlet Road. The turn-off is located 25km west of Walpole on the South Western Highway.
Four wheel drive access is available via Fishermans Track.
Peaceful Bay is a picturesque coastal holiday destination just 33 km. east of Walpole. It is part of what was once a large coastal grazing lease used by landowners from the Warren and Cranbrook areas as summer grazing for their cattle.
In the early days of group settlement the idyllic spot was a favourite picnic destination of the settlers who travelled by horse and cart and gathered for a day’s outing as a break from farm chores.For many years a few fishermen’s shacks were the only signs of habitation, bur in the late 1950s fifty leasehold lots were released. These proved so popular that over the years more lots were made available and there are now more that 250 holiday homes.
In the intervening years, power and a bitumen road took the place of Tilley lamps and gravel.
Such is the beauty of the little holiday sanctuary that a number of people have taken up permanent residence. Available blocks in the freehold area have been quickly taken up.The bay itself is ideal for swimming, fishing, boating and diving, whilst the long areas of beach are great for walkers. Wildflowers and birds are abundant in the bushwalking areas of Peaceful Bay, which is the original habitat of the Ficefolia (red flowering gum).
For those with a 4WD, back tracks provide access to a coastline of wild and rugged beauty.
Popular swimming beach for all ages situated on the Nornalup Inlet. This beach provides recreational opportunities for a whole host of water-based activities including sailing and windsurfing.
A boat ramp, barbecue and toilet facilities are also available. The Coalmine Beach Heritage Trail starts here. This beautiful 3 km scenic walk trail to the Walpole-Nornalup Visitor Centre provides excellent opportunities for bird watching and wildflowers.
Walpole & Nornalup Inlets
Walpole is situated on the shallow Walpole Inlet. This inlet has a depth of no more than 1 metre and is fed by the Walpole River. There are good fishing opportunities from both the Town Jetty and Swan Bay Jetty (also a great spot to watch sunsets).
The Nornalup Inlet is both deeper (up to 5 metres) and larger. This inlet is fed by the Frankland River and the Deep River and is connected to the Walpole Inlet by a one kilometre long channel.
This inlet is permanently open to the sea that, combined with the rivers, creates a rich and diverse marine habitat. The Nornalup Inlet provides great opportunities for a whole host of activities including fishing, boating, sailing and swimming.
This is one of only three places around Walpole that offer car access to the coast. (The others are Peaceful Bay townsite and Mandalay beach.) Take your time and appreciate the fabulous coastal heathland featuring swamp paperbark and, in summer, red flowering gum. This tree is endemic to this region, between Frankland River and Denmark, with a few populations east of Albany, although it is grown as a popular feature tree around the world. Arrive in winter and spring to witness the antics of whales, which annually cavort off this area. Seabirds and other marine life are found all year round.
Mandalay Beach takes its name from the Norwegian barque Mandalay wrecked there in 1911. Mandalay Beach is popular with anglers, but even if you do not fish, its worth the visit for the spectacular views of the Southern Ocean and of Chatham Island, which looms out of the water 3 kilometres offshore.
On-site interpretation and extracts from the Captains Log tell you more about the wreck of the Mandalay.
Directions: Turn onto Mandalay Beach Road, 12 km west of Walpole