'There's nothing like Australia where we may be lucky enough to watch emus strolling gracefully in line in the middle of the desert!'
It was an unexpected wildlife encounter for Jing Qi who was exploring the Pinnacles in Nambung National Park, on a family holiday from Malaysia. Jing Qi, her mother, sister, aunt, uncle and cousin had driven away from the main trail for a closer look at the ancient rock pillars. Entranced by the scenery, the family had actually lost sight of the path when this herd of emus sauntered past the car.
“We were so excited, we screamed! Uncle Tan stopped the car immediately and Aunt Janet ran out of the car to take a closer photo. The emus rushed away, but we were still so pleased with this trip,” Jing Qi said.
Sitting three hours north of Perth, off the scenic Indian Ocean Drive, the Pinnacles are thousands of rock spires scattered across the yellow sand dunes of Nambung National Park. They are actually made up of shells, and date back to a time when the sand here was beneath the sea.
“We were amazed by the magnificent scene, with the stones standing in the middle of the golden sand desert. We took a lot of pictures with different poses,” Jing Qi said.
Visitors can get a closer look on the dedicated drive trail, which Jing Qi and her family had travelled when the emus strolled gracefully past. There is also a spectacular lookout point and an interpretive discovery centre, where visitors can learn about the evolution of the Pinnacles and about the region’s biodiversity.
Jing Qi and her family visited the Pinnacles on a day-trip from Perth, stopping along the way to explore Yanchep National Park. Sitting just 45 minutes from Perth, the park is home to a rich array of flora and fauna. Jing Qi and her family toured through Crystal Cave to see its underground lakes and limestone formations. The park also draws visitors with its numerous walking tracks, including an Aboriginal cultural trail. Nature lovers can spot rare black cockatoos and bandicoots, hike alongside pristine coastal wetlands and see vibrant wildflowers between June and September.
Exploring national parks was all part of the busy five-day itinerary that Uncle Tan had planned for Jing Qi, her mother and sister. The trio had flown to Perth to attend the graduation ceremony of Jing Qi’s cousin. In Perth they also soaked up the views from vast Kings Park and fed swans and pelicans along the Swan River. The family toured Freemantle Prison, learning about “the evolution of prisoner’s welfare”. They also visited Perth’s Caversham Wildlife Park, where Jing Qi was captivated by a cuddly wombat and “koalas sleeping like innocent babies”.
Now back in Malaysia, Jing Qi is already planning her return visit to Perth, so she can discover more of the destinations her Uncle Tan recommended.
“We’re looking forward to touring Western Australia in a mini-bus, which is how Uncle Tan’s family and their friends travel during the holidays,” Jing Qi said.
After seeing emus gracefully strolling through the desert, Jing Qi is ready for just about anything on her next Western Australian adventure.