Port Hedland in 24 hours

Now that you’ve decided to explore Port Hedland, here’s a full itinerary which includes a BHP Iron Ore Tour.

Afternoon

3.20 pm

Westbound Greyhound bus arrives from Karratha in Port Hedland (if it is on time… wink

4.00 pm

Go to the Tourist Bureau in Wedge Street. The staff is very helpful with all your questions. Book your BHP Billiton iron ore tour for tomorrow morning (Monday to Friday only). Get a town map. The office is open till 5 pm.

4.30 pm

Stroll through the town and admire the red dust that covers everything. Use the low sunlight for photography. You might like to buy some minerals at the Rock Shed (good value).

Port Hedland. Near Richardson Street. View to Finucane Island with port facilities. Port Hedland. Near Richardson Street. View to Finucane Island with port facilities.

5.50 pm

Depending on the time of year you are here, the sun sets. Off Richardson Street you can walk to a small three-storey jetty that is an ideal platform to see the sun setting behind the harbour opposite on Finucane Island.

Check out whether you can hire a bike from your accommodation for tomorrow (if you don’t own a car).

Morning

8.30 am

Tourist Bureau opens. For a small fee you can climb the Observation Tower, overlooking the red dusty town and the BHP Billiton iron ore site. Good for great morning shots of the town, but mind your hat! You must wear closed shoes to be allowed to climb, and I would advise you not to wear anything white or valuable, as the tower is somewhat rusty.

9.30 am

The BHP Iron Ore Tour starts. You’ll be picked up from the Tourist Bureau in a van which drives through the working plant. Unfortunately you cannot get out to take photos (security). However, the driver is happy to stop anywhere you like and parks the van in the right position. The tour concludes around 11.30 am. The new HBI (hot briquetted iron) plant is not included in the tour.

Port Hedland. BHP iron ore plant. Note the salt truck in the foreground unloading. Port Hedland. BHP iron ore plant. Note the salt truck in the foreground unloading.

12.00 pm

Pick up the bike from your accommodation and drive to the Boulevard Shopping Centre, three kilometres east of the town. At the side of the car parking, the road behind you, go to the last shop on the outside of the centre.

There’s the Aboriginal Office where you have to get the permission and key to see the Aboriginal petroglyphs (rock engravings) at Two Mile Ridge (sometimes referred to as “Nelson Point Aboriginal Site”). Get some water at the nearby shopping centre, as you’ll have to pay three times as much back where your accommodation is.

More on petroglyphs in the section of the Burrup Peninsula.

Drive back to town for seven minutes. On your left hand side you’ll see a wooden stand surrounded by a fence. The key matches one of the padlocks so you can get in. Please stay on the boardwalk to preserve this ancient piece of indigenous culture. When you return the key to the office, try to chat with the employee. If you’re really interested in Aboriginal culture, you might be lucky and he or she knows someone who will have a chat with you.

1.00 pm

Do not head straight back, but have a look at the open-air museum next to the shopping centre. Here you can see old trains, trucks and working equipment of the early days of iron ore mining.

1.30 pm

If you’re still fit, a 90-minute town tour departs from the Tourist Bureau.

4.10 pm

Westbound Greyhound bus departs from Port Hedland (again, if it is on time… wink

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www.CreativeSpirits.info, Port Hedland in 24 hours, retrieved 25 September 2017