"Onslow is located 1395km north of Perth and 491km northeast of Carnarvon."
This charming town is rich in history, experiences warm weather all year round and boasts beaches and river systems perfect for fishing and mud crabbing.
The Goods Shed Museum at the Visitor Centre is definitely worth a look. Featuring all sorts of old relics from generations ago you could be there for hours. Displays include everything from ancient household items, tools, lanterns, telephones, tobacco tins to name just a few. We recognized items that were in our grandparents and our own households as kids. Many of the pieces have been donated by locals. There is also a photo display and old newspaper cuttings about the Old Onslow townsite and its history. A gold coin donation is requested when visiting the museum.
The townsite and coast can be seen from two lookouts. Water Authority Lookout at the end of Second Street provides views of the town, ocean and old jetty remains.
Beadon Point Lookout, also off Second Street, looks out
over the Indian Ocean and features a unique War Memorial depicting the
sun. It was designed and positioned specifically so the sun will rise
through the centre on Anzac Day each year. An additional memorial stands
at the lookout dedicated to the crew members of fishing vessels Lady
Pamela and Harmony which were lost at sea during Cyclone Bobby in 1995.
Sunrise Beach is the town’s waterfront along First Avenue. The grassy foreshore picnic area has sheltered gas barbeques and tables and the beachfront is ideal for swimming and activities. The town boat ramp is also located here.
Sunset Beach, off Backbeach Road, overlooks the jetty and is littered with shells. Sheltered gas barbeques and picnic tables are provided here and dogs are permitted. The Ian Blair Boardwalk links this beach to the Beadon Point Lookout.
Four Mile Creek is 8km out of town along Seaview Drive and is the place to drop in a fishing line and mud crab nets. We baited up the crab nets with “Kite Kat” (yes good old cat food) and caught a few. Admittedly they were undersized but the bait seems to work well. Simply puncture the can several times and cable-tie it to the net. The crabs can’t seem to resist.
Along Beadon Creek Road to the east of town is The Groyne where the keen fishermen throw a line in. West of the rock groyne is Beadon Bay and a dog friendly beach and off lead exercise area. Close by is the Beadon Creek Boat Harbour and public boat ramp. This is also the departure point for charters going to the Mackerel Islands, Montebello Islands, Thevenard Island and Direction Island.
Termite Town is located 10km out of town on the Access
Road. The ground is covered with large brown mounds built by Spinifex
Termites. This termite species builds the largest mounds in Australia
and amongst the tallest anywhere reaching up to 7 metres high in some
Old Onslow is accessed 20km from town along the Access Road and a further 22km on gravel. Situated on the banks of the Ashburton River is what’s left of the old townsite, which isn’t much at all. The only building still standing is the old Onslow Police Station and holding cells. The township relocated 18km east in 1925 due to silt problems at the Ashburton River mouth adversely affecting the town’s port facilities. Deep water was found at Beadon Point where the townsite is today.
Continue past the ruins for a few km and you’ll find the Old Onslow Cemetery.
There are about 20 or so grave sites and surprisingly many of the
deceased died young, the youngest being two children aged 7 years old.
Free camping is permitted south of Old Onslow on the banks of the Ashburton River known as Three Mile Camp. Shire permits are required in excess of 3 nights. Carry plenty of water as the temperatures can become very warm. Note there is a public water point across from the Visitor Centre in town.Onslow isn’t just one of those coastal points you can pull into along your travels. It is 80km in and out again back to the North West Coastal Highway. The charm and peaceful atmosphere of the town made us glad we did though.
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