The Kimberley, 1990
Join us on a time-travelling adventure to the Kimberley region of Western Australia. This distinctive and unique landscape has a rich Aboriginal history that goes back tens of thousands of years and continues today. Click on the images below for photos, videos and more information. Suitable for years 3 to 6.
An ancient land
The oldest rocks in Western Australia's Kimberley region formed more than 2 billion years ago. The region has spectacular mountain ranges, gorges with towering cliffs and waterfalls.
The Kimberley coastline includes large bays and peninsulas, sandy beaches, mangrove forests, coral reefs, and thousands of islands. It attracts tourists from across Australia and the world.
Did you know?
The Kimberley has a tropical monsoon climate, with a dry season and a wet season?
Plants and animals
Flora and fauna
The Kimberley is home to many birds, mammals, reptiles and fish and the coastline is a major breeding grounds for humpback whales. It is also one of the few places in the world where boab trees grow naturally.
Animals introduced from overseas have had a negative impact on the landscape.
Did you know?
The saltwater crocodile is the world’s largest reptile? It can grow up to five-metres long and weigh up to a tonne.
Connection to land
The Aboriginal communities of the Kimberley have a deep and continuing connection to the land and sea that goes back thousands of years. They are guardians of stories handed down over countless generations, and have a deep understanding of the region's landscape, plants and animals. Today, as traditional owners, many Aboriginal people are employed in roles that allow them to continue to care for their country.
War of resistance
Jandamarra's story is of great significance to the people of the Kimberley. Jandamarra was a Bunuba man born in 1873. He worked as a police tracker before he began a war of resistance against the white settlers who had invaded his people’s lands.
Jandamarra earned a reputation for superhuman powers after avoiding capture by the police for more than two years. Eventually he was tracked and shot dead on 1 April 1897.
Did you know?
Jandamarra's story is kept alive in songs, dances, books and plays? He is now recognised by many as an Aboriginal hero.
The Kimberley was one of the last regions where European people settled in Australia. Its rugged landscape and extreme weather conditions made it a difficult place to survive. Sheep and cattle were introduced from the 1800s and despite causing conflict between Indigenous people and settlers, agriculture remains important in the Kimberley. Today, some stations are owned and run by Aboriginal people on their traditional lands.
Watch the videos
Experience the rugged beauty and diverse wildlife of Western Australia’s remote Kimberley region.
'The old stockman days' on the ABC Kimberley website
Indigenous artist Mervyn Street revisits Louisa Downs station, near Fitzroy Crossing. Duration: 6:09.
'Jandamarra story set for Sydney Opera House debut' on ABC News website
7.30 story with Bunuba man Emmanuel James Brown and playwright Steve Hawke at Windjina Gorge. Duration: 5:39.
'Bunuba Country' on YouTube
Kimberley Tourism video with Bunuba man Dillon Andrews introducing significant local sites. Duration: 5:46.
'Geikie Gorge (Darngku)' on YouTube
Indigenous ranger Anthony Aiken tours Geikie Gorge, explaining its importance to Bunuba people. Duration: 3:12.