CAPE TO CAPE TRACK: 7-DAY ITINERARY
The 135 km Cape to Cape Track is a picturesque, long-distance trail that goes along the coast in Margaret River in Western Australia, between Cape Naturaliste & Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse. Some people told me this is a little too much for my first multi-day hike, and maybe it was, but I finished it as planned, and fell in love with longer walks ever since. Before you go on this epic adventure, check what you need to know about the Cape to Cape Track, and have a look at my 7-day Cape to Cape Track itinerary included below.
DAY 1 | Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse – Yallingup
The Cape to Cape Track can be walked from north to south, and south to north. I decided to follow the recommended direction, started at Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse, and left my car at a parking nearby for the next 7 days. On the first day, I walked 15 km to Yallingup, and spent the night in this little town. Make sure to register your hike at the beginning of the track. The guest book is left at a station close to the lighthouse. Day one is quite easy, the track leads along the coast, and offers some spectacular views. Don’t miss out on Sugarloaf Rock, emerging from the Indian Ocean, and do a short detour to see it up close. This section doesn’t have any national park campsites, so be sure to book a night in a caravan park in Yallingup.
Unfortunately, I had a bit of a problem with this. December is high season in this region, Yallingup was packed with people, and all caravan parks were booked up. Obviously, it didn’t stop me from doing this hike. I had no booking, and my plan was to show up, and ask for a spot. It was a bit risky, but I had no other choice. My first attempt was unsuccessful, so I went to another place, and asked again. Friendly staff at Caves Caravan Park Yallingup said yes. It turned out they accept hikers even if they are booked up. So if you are in the same situation, just go there, and you should be fine. I paid 40 AUD for the night (Christmas), took a shower, and charged my phone. If you need anything, a small grocery shop is around the corner.
Walking track: around 15 km, 5 hours (one way)
DAY 2 | Yallingup – Moses Rock Campsite
This is day two of the 7-day Cape to Cape Track itinerary. I started from Yallingup early in the morning, and walked around 21 km to Moses Rock Campsite. This is a very interesting section of the trail, and personally my favourite bit of it. The landscape is diverse and changes every hour. You will have a chance to see spectacular cliff-top views, walk on pristine beaches, and experience a little bit of bush bash. The trail passes by some gorgeous spots such as the Aquarium, Canal Rocks, Injidup Natural Spa. If you don’t feel like doing any extra kilometres, that’s fine. You can explore Margaret River in Western Australia by car after finishing the hike. Just make sure to check Quinninup Falls. They are only accessible from the track.
Moses Rock Campsite belongs to Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park. It’s free of charge, and no booking is required. There are some basic facilities available, including a toilet and picnic table. Luckily, you will also find a rainwater tank, and some shaded areas there. That’s a real blessing after a day-long hike in the heat. There are no grocery shops along the way, so you won’t be able to buy any food. Be sure to have enough to make it through to the next town. Feel free to refill your bottles at the campsite. Just remember to boil or treat the tank water prior to consumption. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to take a shower on day two. You may consider jumping into the ocean instead. No chance to recharge your phone on that day either.
Walking track: around 21 km, 7 hours (one way)
DAY 3 | Moses Rock Campsite – Ellensbrook Campsite
On day three, I woke up with a gecko in my shoe. I kid you not! The planned distance for that day is more or less 19 km, starting from Moses Rock Campsite, and finishing at Ellensbrook Campsite. The day kicks off with a stretch along the beach. Then the track goes uphill, and continues through coastal scrub. Make sure to stop for a while at Wilyabrup Sea Cliffs to admire the views. After a couple of hours, you will get to Gracetown. I would suggest going straight to Gracie’s General. They sell cold drinks, delicious coffee, tasty pastries, and some groceries. Rest a while, buy some water, and charge your phone. The official Cape to Cape Track goes along the beach, but if you want to take a break in the town, it’s easier to follow the road.
Don’t get too optimistic though! The distance for the day is not finished yet. You need to push on. Ellensbrook Campsite belongs to the national park. It’s free of charge and no reservation is taken. You will find some basic facilities there such as a toilet, picnic table and rainwater tank. As previously mentioned, make sure to boil or treat the tank water before consumption. If you are lucky enough, you may take a shower at Ellensbrook Homestead. They offer accommodation, so you can consider staying overnight there, or at least asking about the shower. Unfortunately, I wasn’t lucky with that. Didn’t make a booking, and no one was there to talk, so I kept going. Before you reach the campsite, have a look at Meekadarribee Falls.
Walking track: around 19 km, 6 hours (one way)
DAY 4 | Ellensbrook Campsite – Prevelly
Day four was easy! Only 15 km along the coast with absolutely amazing views. I saw an immensely beautiful beach on that day, and it wasn’t even marked on the map. This is definitely one of the reasons why the Cape to Cape Track is worth doing. Some places are hidden, and you won’t find them driving around. I started at Ellensbrook Campsite early in the morning, and made it to the next town by 11:00 am. There are no national park campsites in Prevelly, so you have to book a night in a private caravan park. Prevelly was jammed in December, so I wasn’t able to make a reservation. I showed up at Prevelly Caravan Park with no booking at all (again!), and asked if I can stay overnight. They said yes just because I was doing this hike.
I paid 19 AUD for the night at Prevelly Caravan Park, took a shower, charged my phone, and even had a proper dinner. Prevelly is the last town on your way, so be sure to go grocery shopping. There’s a small shop close to the caravan park, and a restaurant a little further. I finished the distance early on that day, so I could enjoy some free time on the beach. The truth is that there’s not much time for leisure during the hike. I always preferred to finish the distance planned for the day, and rest afterwards, rather than do long breaks, and then rush. So if you finish early on day four, take advantage of it! Go to the beach, swim in the ocean, and get relaxed. It’s worth to check Surfers Point in the evening. It’s a great spot to watch a sunset.
Walking track: around 15 km, 5 hours (one way)
DAY 5 | Prevelly – Point Road Campsite
This is day five of the 7-day Cape to Cape Track itinerary, and roughly 23 km to walk from Prevelly to the campsite, mainly through the bush, and along the coast. Unfortunately, the long sandy stretches can’t be avoided. This is the greatest challenge of the Cape to Cape Track, and you can’t really do anything about it. This section of the trail is very diverse. You will cross a bridge, walk by a beautiful cave, and see a spectacular coastline. Further on, the track goes inland, and takes you to the magnificent Boranup Karri Forest, dominated by Eucalyptus diversicolor, one of the tallest trees in the world. Camping is possible at Conto Campsite or Point Road Campsite. They both belong to the national park, and require a payment.
I decided to stay a night at Point Road Campsite. It’s located 2 km further away, which shortens the distance for the following day. The camping fee is 11 AUD per night, and no reservation is required. Payments are taken at the entry station. Point Road Campsite has a toilet and picnic tables, but there is no rainwater tank. If you are running out of water, make sure to stop at Conto Campsite to refill your bottles. The tap is located next to the toilets. If you wish to stay a night there, you can surely do that. The camping fee is 15 AUD per night, and prior booking is required. This campground is much bigger than the other one. It has toilets, and a huge picnic and barbecue area. Unfortunately, no chance to take a shower on day five.
Walking track: around 23 km, 8 hours (one way)
DAY 6 | Point Road Campsite – Deepdene Campsite
The hardest part of the Cape to Cape Track begins. Day six and seven are all about traversing beaches. If sand happens to be soft, you are in deep trouble. It will be two times harder than you think. Don’t panic though! You can’t give up at this stage. It’s about 26 km to do, starting from Point Road Campsite, and finishing at Deepdene Campsite. The beginning is nice and easy. You will continue through the wonderful Boranup Karri Forest until you get to the beach that has 7 km. It means you will walk on sand for at least 2 hours with literally no break. That was pretty tough! I got to Hamelin Bay around 2:00 pm, and was exhausted. By the way, this spot is famous for giant stingrays, which can be seen offshore with a bit of luck.
There’s a caravan park in Hamelin Bay, very close to the beach, and you can take a shower there for just 5 AUD. I didn’t hesitate even for a second! They also have a small shop with groceries, so you can buy cold drinks and some snacks. I went there, had a coffee, ate something sweet and… all I wanted at that time was to go to sleep. I was extremely tired, my legs were sore, and I couldn’t bring myself to continue the walk. It’s still about 10 km to go from Hamelin Bay to Deepdene Campsite. The campground belongs to Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park, it’s free of charge, and no booking is needed. You don’t have to worry about refilling your bottles. There is a rainwater tank. Just make sure to boil or treat the water before drinking it.
Walking track: around 26 km, 10 hours (one way)
DAY 7 | Deepdene Campsite – Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse
This is the last day of the adventure! I remember being so exhausted that I slept at Deepdene Campsite for 12 hours. Even though it was only 16 km to finish the entire Cape to Cape Track, it seemed like a lot. I felt weak on that day, and hiked two times slower than usual. It’s worth to say that this last section is poorly marked. I didn’t notice a single sign. So I just walked towards Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse that appeared on the horizon halfway through. The Water Wheel is the official end of the Cape to Cape Track, but the truth is that everyone goes a few extra kilometres to touch the second lighthouse. Don’t forget to sign off the track at Water Wheel. The station with the guest book looks very similar to the one at the beginning of the trail.
I was so happy when I saw Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse for the first time. It felt like nothing could stop me anymore. The moment I walked in, the staff at the lighthouse knew that I finished the Cape to Cape Track, and let me in for free. So nice of them! There is a shop with souvenirs, where you can get a certificate testifying your achievement. It’s worth buying, costs only 5 AUD, and will bring back memories in the future. I also purchased a hoodie. The biggest mistake I made is that I didn’t take any warm clothes with me, and was freezing at the end. So my best advice for you is to pack some. Not sure how to get back to the first lighthouse to pick up your car? I’m explaining this in a separate post, Cape to Cape Track: need to know.
Walking track: around 16 km, 6 hours (one way)
This is the entire 7-day Cape to Cape Track itinerary. Do you have any questions about this hike? Let me know by leaving a comment below!
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7-day Cape to Cape Track itinerary