Monkey Mia is located at Dolphin Beach on the shores of Shark Bay, Western Australia. It is famous for its hundreds of kilometers of white-shell beaches and clear blue waters, and for the wild dolphins that make the area their home. Monkey Mia is one of the top spots in the world for getting up close to dolphins in the wild. The area is a World Heritage area is a major tourist attraction with visitors from around the world coming to see the dolphins and stay at the nearby Dolphin Resort.
There are a few stories about the origin of the name Monkey Mia. It was probably named by European pearlers in the 1890’s. The word ‘Mia’ is the Aboriginal term for home or shelter. The term Monkey may have came from Malay pearlers who could have had pet monkeys with them. Another possibility is that the name was derived from a schooner called ‘Monkey’ which arrived in 1834.
The dolphins appear reliably almost every day. In fact in the last five years, dolphins have visited every day except for four days. Eight dolphins regularly visit the Monkey Mia beach, but there are often more, with the record being 23 dolphins arriving at same time. There is no charge for seeing the dolphins. You can get up close to dolphins directly in front of the Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort.
The dolphins visit between about 8am and 1pm. Visitors can wade amongst the dolphins in the shallows and feed them fish. The Monkey Mia dolphin feeding is strictly controlled under the supervision of full-time national park rangers. They are fed only freshly caught local and are not given enough to ever make them dependant on humans for food.
For the wildlife and nature enthusiast, Shark Bay holds many other wildlife wonders. The ocean park is home to turtles, sea-snakes, sharks and stingrays. There are almost 100 bird species found in Shark Bay. Dugongs like the area too – the coast of Monkey Mia has the second largest population of Dugongs in the world. Four species of Marine Turtles live in Shark Bay, including Loggerhead and Green Turtles. Five species of whales have been sighted in the waters off Dolphin beach – Humpback Whales, Right Whales, Minke Whales, Pilot Whales and Killer Whales.
Dolphin Resort offers a wide range of accommodation for a comfortable holiday. Dolphin Resort has four accommodation options: Beachfront Villas, Garden Villas, Beachside Dolphin Units, and Limestone Garden Villas.
Monkey Mia is located about midway up the coast of Western Australia, about 850km north of Perth. You can get to Monkey Mia from Perth by air, car or coach. From Perth, it is approximately 1 hour 45 minutes flight, or 8 – 10 hours drive.
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