Discovering Conspicuous Cliff in Walpole-Nornalup National Park, WA

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We visited Conspicuous Cliff while camping in Walpole, and oh, what a beach.

Visiting Conspicuous Cliff immediately brought to mind a couple of my favourite beaches — the stunning Noosa Main Beach in Queensland, Australia, where I once lived, and the breathtaking Luskentyre Beach in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland.

Both hold a special place in my heart for their beauty, though Conspicuous Cliff offers a similar charm without the crowds in Noosa!

Many beaches have dunes as their background, but the green bushland flows right down to the beach here. The wooden boardwalk and steps leading to the beach also added to the picturesque experience. 

 For Lars and me, it quickly became a favourite spot while we were staying in Walpole.

It stands out for its natural ruggedness along WA’s southern coast. Despite its beauty, though, it’s not a place for a casual swim due to its wild seas.

View of Conspicuous Cliff heathland from the path with a section of ocean visible in the background
The approach to Conspicuous Cliff Beach, Walpole ©Lifejourney4two

Quick Summary: Exploring Conspicuous Cliff

  • Location: Nestled within Walpole-Nornalup National Park, Western Australia, Conspicuous Cliff stands out for its natural ruggedness and stunning views, reminiscent of Noosa but without the crowds.
  • Accessibility: Easily reachable by two-wheel drive, making it a convenient stop for those exploring the park. Note: pets are not allowed, even in vehicles.
  • Experience: The journey to the beach includes a picturesque wooden boardwalk and steps amidst lush bushland, leading to a beautiful white sandy beach with a freshwater stream.
  • Swimming: Swimming here is not advisable due to strong currents and rip tides. However, nearby Nornalup Inlet at Coalmine Beach offers a safer option.
  • Facilities: Includes an eco-toilet near the carpark, information gazebo, various lookouts, benches, and a picnic area.
  • Attractions: In addition to the cliff itself, the park is home to whale watch lookouts, part of the Bibbulmun Track for hiking, and several other attractions emphasizing the area’s natural beauty.
  • Photography: We’ve captured our experience in photographs throughout this post for those of you looking visual inspiration.

To learn more about each aspect, we’d love for you to explore the sections below, which include extra details and great photos.

Conspicuous Cliff beach with some dune grass in the foreground and green hill and ocean along the beach
Conspicuous Cliff Beach ©Lifejourney4two

 About Conspicuous Cliffs, Walpole-Nornalup National Park

Nestled within Walpole Nornalup National Park is Conspicuous Cliff, which has the added benefit of free entry, unlike many national parks that charge a fee to visit. Being free means it’s excellent for those travelling on a budget. 

There aren’t many beaches in Walpole that are easily accessible, but Conspicuous Cliff is an exception. Even vehicles with two-wheel drive can easily reach the car park.

However, as you will be driving within the National Park, you can’t have any pets—even in your car. 


Some conspicuous limestone cliffs give the place its name on the hill overlooking the beach.

Conspicuous Cliff beach with stream runnning along the snad and two limestone cliff faces obvious in the green hill and turquoise ocean
Can you spot the Conspicuous Cliffs? ©Lifejourney4two

You can get the first lookout with a picnic bench without using any steps (about 100m from the carpark).  However, you’ll need to take the steps to get to the beach.  

It’s a must-visit for the views and stunning beach alone, though be prepared for the numerous steps leading down.


  • Eco Toilet near Carpark
  • Information gazebo
  • Various lookouts
  • Benches and picnic area.

Conspicuous Cliff Taster Video

Conspicuous Cliff, Nornalup, Western Australia - A Place of Beauty and Serenity

Conspicuous Cliff Map

Check out this interactive map showing where Conspicuous Cliff is and how to get there from Walpole. It’s about 21 km from Walpole, roughly a 25-minute drive.  

 Conspicuous Cliff Beach

From the carpark to the beach: 800m return 

You can get to Conspicuous Cliff Beach by walking along the path from the carpark, where you’ll pass an information board on your right and then come to a picnic area and look out on your left. From here, many wooden steps and a boardwalk lead you down to the beach. 

This walk down is part of the experience. I loved the compelling view of the ocean with its bright turquoise in contrast to the lush green scenery around me. 

Pathway leading down towards the beach between the lush bush
Wooden walkway and steps leading down towards the beach ©Lifejourney4two

The beautiful white sandy beach has a freshwater stream flowing across it. It’s a gorgeous place to sit, watch the waves, feel the sand between your toes, and breathe in the salty sea air.

Not only is this good for the soul, but it reportedly has great health benefits

Conspicuous-Cliff-beach-and wooden steps down to beach
Conspicuous Cliff Beach, Walpole ©Lifejourney4two

Conspicuous Cliff Swimming

The waters around Conspicuous Cliff are treacherous, with strong currents and rip tides. Therefore it is not a swimming beach.

If you’re looking for a swimming spot in Walpole, the shallow and protected waters of Nornalup Inlet at Coalmine Beach are an excellent choice.

Or, for more spectacular beaches suitable for ocean swimming, head east towards Peaceful Bay or further on towards Denmark, where the famous Greens Pool, Elephant Rocks, and Madfish Bay are popular swimming beaches. 

Shelley stood on the beach with ocean , hills and cliffs in the panoramic view
Me, taking in the views ©Lifejourney4two

Whale Watch Lookout 

Walking down towards the beach, you’ll see a path leading off to the left that climbs towards the cliff top. Here, you’ll come to Whale Watch Lookout, a viewing platform with panoramic views.

It’s perfect for spotting whales that happen to be passing or bottlenose dolphins frolicking in the Southern Ocean.

Southern Right Whales are known to come close to shore, while Humpbacks stay further out to sea. The best time to spot these gigantic marine mammals is between July and September.  

A tarmac path leading to the gazebo with bench and steps leading upward in the background
Path to a lookout and picnic area with the steps up to Whale Lookout in the background ©Lifejourney4two

Conspicuous Cliff Hike

If you feel energetic, you can hike part of the Bibbulmun Track from Conspicuous Cliff car park to Rame Head Campsite, a 6.6 km return hike.

The Bibbulum Track is a 1000 km trail that starts in the Perth Hills and leads all the way to Albany. You can choose to do sections of it, and this part of the track offers great southwest views.

Looking towards the left of the boardwalk to the beach with green hills and small peninsula
Conspicuous Beach ©Lifejourney4two

From the car park, you head towards the beach, down the steps and along the boardwalk to the beach. Along the beach, the track climbs steeply to Conspicuous Cliffs for spectacular views over the Southern Ocean. The trail then descends through coastal heath towards Rame Head Camp.

Check out this hike on the WA Trails website here.   

The final steps to Conspicuous Cliff Beach © Lifejourney4two

If you want a longer hike, consider the 63 km, 3-day hike from Walpole to Peaceful Bay.

Starting the Bibbulmun track in Walpole, wander through the incredible red tingle trees in Walpole, continue along the Frankland River, head to the Valley of the Giants and the incredible tree top walk before heading towards the coast and passing through this section of the Track at Conspicuous Cliff, before finishing at Peaceful Bay.

There is a camp hut on the banks of the Frankland River for overnight stays, and this part of the Bibbulmun offers the best of both the southwest’s forests and coastal views.

Conspicuous Cliff Camping

There isn’t any camping at Conspicuous Cliff unless you are hiking, and then there is a camp for 10/12 people at Rame Head.

However, Walpole has a couple of options. Our favourite is Coalmine Beach Camping, where we always stay when in the area. There is also a lovely walk, the Coalmine Heritage Walk, which leads to the small town of Walpole from Coalmine Beach. 

The freshwater stream alongside the stream leading to the beach
Wavy boardwalk alongside the stream flowing into the beach ©Lifejourney4two

Other attractions in the Walpole-Nornalup National Park and Nearby

Conspicuous Cliff isn’t the only place to stop for a look. Walpole is a treasure trove of natural beauty, offering various attractions to explore.

Whether you’re looking to immerse yourself in ancient forests, marvel at the power of the ocean, or enjoy tranquil waters, this list has you covered:

  • Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk: Traverse a walkway 40 metres high among ancient tingle trees.
  • Giant Tingle Tree: Stand in awe of one of the largest living tingle trees, accessible by a short walk.
  • Mount Frankland National Park: Challenge yourself with a hike to the summit for panoramic views.
  • Circular Pool: Enjoy the serene beauty of swirling water patterns in a forest setting.
  • Walpole-Nornalup Inlet: Kayak, birdwatch, or take the best tour ever exploring the inlet 
  • Peaceful Bay: Spend a relaxing day swimming, fishing, and picnicking in a picturesque bay.
  • Coalmine Beach Heritage Trail: Explore the historical trail that reveals the area’s cultural and natural heritage.
  • Knoll Scenic Drive: Take a scenic drive through the forest and stop at the lookouts with views over the Nornalup Inlet
Beach succulents growing in the sand with the ocean in the background
Conspicuous Cliff Beach ©Lifejourney4two

Frequently Asked Questions

Are dogs allowed at Conspicuous Cliff?

Dogs are not allowed at Conspicuous Cliff or within Walpole-Nornalup National Park. This rule helps protect local wildlife and ensures a safe environment for all park visitors. If you’re planning a trip and want to include your furry friend, it’s best to look for pet-friendly options outside the national park boundaries.

What facilities are available at Conspicuous Cliff?

Visitors can find an eco-toilet near the carpark, an information gazebo, various lookouts, benches, and a picnic area. These facilities make it easier to enjoy a day out at the cliff, providing comfort and convenience for all.

Is it safe to swim at Conspicuous Cliff?

Swimming at Conspicuous Cliff is not recommended due to strong currents and rip tides. The nearby Walpole Inlet at Coalmine Beach offers safer swimming conditions for those looking to take a dip.

How accessible is Conspicuous Cliff?

Conspicuous Cliff is easily accessible, even for vehicles with two-wheel drive. The car park is conveniently located, making it an exceptional spot for those travelling on a budget or looking for easily accessible natural attractions.

For those with prams and wheelchairs, the pathway is accessible to the first lookout and picnic area about 100m from the car park.

Pathway from the car park towards the information board
The pathway from the carpark with an information board on the right ©Lifejourney4two

Exploring Conspicuous Cliff … That’s a Wrap

Conspicuous Cliff offers incredible views, and though the beach is a bit of a walk, it’s definitely worth the effort.

It’s great to know there’s no entry fee, making it an excellent choice for budget-conscious travellers. Swimming isn’t advised here due to strong currents, but the scenery alone is captivating.

There’s much more to explore around Walpole, from ancient forests to peaceful bays. Conspicuous Cliff is just the beginning. Many other attractions are waiting for you.

We hope you enjoyed the photos from this trip. For more visual inspiration, look at our road trip photography post – it’s packed with road trip photo ideas and tips to help you capture your adventures as beautifully as Walpole’s landscapes.

If you are after more picturesque beaches in southern WA, you can’t go wrong exploring more of the incredible beaches along the south coast. Our favourites include Greens Pool in Denmark and Lucky Bay and Whartons Beach are great places to visit in Esperance.

Happy beach hopping!

Lars taking photos on the boardwalk towards the beach
Lars capturing the views ©Lifejourney4two

Traditional Owners

We recognise and acknowledge the Menang people as the traditional owners of Walpole-Nornalup National Park.

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Planning your travels?

These are the travel resources we recommend and use when planning our trips.

For a more thorough list, visit our Travel Resources page here.

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Shelley, a former primary school teacher with a law degree, and her husband Lars co-own Lifejourney4two. Their adventure began in Perth, Australia, and has since taken them through Europe and Africa in motorhomes and bush campers. Shelley's travel guides combine practical advice with engaging stories, mirroring their shift from 'One Day' to 'Day One'. Together, they aim to inspire others to embark on their own travel dreams.

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