"Don't discount the town" Port Hedland by Dxenion

Port Hedland Travel Guide: 11 reviews and 26 photos

A working town

People come here thinking its a tourist town - it isn't. Iron ore production is the primary reason for the existance of this place. Port Hedland became the highest exporter of Iron Ore in the world in 2005. Other minerals are mined here too including manganese and salt.

The town is set up around the mining industry so you wont find the usual touristy things when you come here. What you will find is a town full of down-to-earth friendly people who will do what they can to help you - if you give them a chance.

Alot of people from the north west region of WA come here to retire. The weather's pretty good, the fishing is great and the lifestyle is laid back. It doesn't have the hype of Broome (6 1/2 hrs north) or the amenities of Karratha (2 hrs south) but it's isolation and lack of tourism is it's drawcard. If you want to experience real outback hospitality without the thrills, Port Hedland is the place.

There are a couple of tourist type things you can do. You can get information from the tourist information centre in the main street about the iron ore ship movements in the port and also some local knowledge on the best fishing spots. You can also climb the tower for a small fee and you'll get an awesome view of the whole area. If you're lucky, the centre may be able to arrange a visit to the shipping tower by the Port. It's normally a restricted area but they may let a few people in to show them the workings inside the Port area.

Despite BHP Billiton's best efforts, the town is constantly covered in pink iron ore dust. Even the pidgeons are pink!

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Down-to-earth locals that wont fleece you.
  • Cons:Pink iron ore dust everywhere.
  • Last visit to Port Hedland: Dec 2006
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (7)

Comments (2)

  • thegreynomad's Profile Photo
    Feb 15, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    I haven't made it to here yet but have seen the long coal Trains in North Queensland.

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Sep 3, 2006 at 9:08 AM

    What an informative, interesting group of tips! The "moon staircase" was fantastic. Beautiful, brilliant photograph to match the great information. I was fascinated by all of it.

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