About this place
In 1819, 1820 and 1821-22 Lieutenant Phillip Parker King became the first person to accurately chart the Kimberley coast in the Mermaid, an 84 tonne cutter, and the Bathurst. Due to a leak in the hull of the Mermaid, King was obliged to beach the vessel in what is now Prince Regent National Park for repairs. On 8 October 1820 he wrote: “ The country in the vicinity of the bay, which, from the use we made of it, was called Careening Bay, is only slightly covered with a poor, stony soil; but notwithstanding this drawback, the hills are well wooded, and vegetation… abundant .”
King described the Aboriginal huts near their encampment: “Besides the huts on the beach, which were merely strips of bark bent over to form a shelter from the sun, there were others on the top of the hill over the tents of a larger and more substantial construction. The fireplaces near them were strewed with the nuts of the sago palm, the fruit of which appears to be generally eaten by the natives of the north and north-west coasts".
The Kimberley area is home to saltwater and freshwater crocodiles so visitors need to be careful and heed all advice and warning signs.
Plan when to visit. Consider travelling with a personal location beacon (PLB). In the event you need to be rescued it could save your life!
Pay attention to all warning signs, however just because a sign isn’t there doesn’t mean crocodiles aren’t present. If you are unsure don't swim, canoe or use small boats in estuaries, tidal rivers or pools and contact the nearest Parks and Wildlife office.
Plants, wildlife and fungi
Visit the Atlas of Living Australia for a list of species recorded within a 5km radius of Careening Bay.
The Balanggarra, Wunambal Gaambera, Ngarinyin and Miriuwung Gajerrong people have cultural, spiritual and social connections to the north Kimberley sea country. North Kimberley Marine Park will be jointly managed with traditional owners, with agreement already reached with the Balanggarra traditional owners to jointly manage their sea country.