Did you know there are caves to explore just outside Perth, Western Australia? In fact, there are over 580 caves beneath the far northern suburb of Yanchep, a 50-minute drive from the Perth CBD. Whilst many of those caves are not available to explore by the average person, within the Yanchep National Park cave tours are available for the public. For the daredevil, there is an adventure cave tour. However, I am not so brave. Instead, I purchase the $15 Yanchep National Park Crystal Cave Tour ticket from the Visitor’s Centre located within the park.
In this Article about Yanchep National Park Cave Tours You Will Learn:
- What you will see during a Yanchep cave tour
- Tips to plan your day at Yanchep National Park
- The location of Yanchep National Park Caves
- The price and how to purchase a Crystal Cave Tour ticket
- What to take into Yanchep Crystal Cave
PLEASE NOTE: Crystal Cave is currently closed for maintenance and risk evaluation, however the rest of Yanchep National Park is still open to explore
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The Crystal Cave Tour
Our tour begins nine metres below the Earth’s surface in the cool, slightly damp, dimly lit first chamber of Crystal Cave. Listening to our tour guide, she reflects on tours that began in the early 1900’s. Back then tourists would have to clamber down ropes, scramble with lanterns through narrow tunnels to reach each chamber and sometimes sludge through the then-natural streams. Today, thanks in part to a large donation the Yanchep National Park received in the 1930’s we are able to walk down wooden stairs – though there are no ramps, along structured dirt paths with iron rails, all lit by electricity.
Looking for the crystals I see small pretty wall cavities lit by coloured red and amber lights, but – no crystals. Ducking my 163cm (5ft 3in) frame I make my way through a narrow tunnel. It opens out into a large limestone chamber.
To my right is a 10m diameter pond of water. In front of me, limestone stairs invite me to view traditional cave formations; large beige stalactites hang from the ceiling along with sheer glistening shawls and straws, and some stalagmites are popping up from cavity floors – but no crystals.
Strange little glass red tags look as if they are holding cracks in the limestone walls together – surely they’re not crystals. No, they are the alert system for rock movement. Every day before the first Crystal Cave Tour, a tour guide walks the 250m Yanchep cave trail to ensure all the tags are still intact. To date, none of the glass tags have broken.
Our guide asks us to all be quiet as we gaze at the aptly named reflection pond – but it’s not a crystal-looking pond. Not a sound is uttered and it is eerily quiet. You cannot even hear the sound of water trickling into the pond. The Perth underground water table has receded and so too have the natural Yanchep cave ponds – the water is now pumped in for the tourists. Lack of water has also caused the loss of small micro-animals that once lived in the caves.
But it still feels damp inside the 12m deep cave. The guide swings her torch up. A moist sheen covers the rocky ceiling, it looks like – crystals.
Our 45min Crystal Cave Tour draws to a close. Our guide points out one consolation due to the lack of water in the Yanchep National Park cave system. Cave cavities that were once filled with water are now dry, allowing speleologists to access new areas and discover even more caves below Yanchep.
Tips to Plan Your Visit to Crystal Cave in Yanchep National Park
For further information refer to these official pages on the West Australian Parks and Wildlife website:
Entry into Yanchep National Park is $15/car (fees correct at March 2023). Please visit the Yanchep National Park website (see above) for the latest fees. Annual Western Australia park passes are also available.
Yanchep is 50km from the Perth CBD. The easiest way to reach Yanchep National Park is to drive. The Perth Transperth public transport system travels to the suburb of Yanchep but does not stop at the national park (and I think it’s too far to walk). Alternatively, you can book a tour:
- Either a half-day tour of Yanchep National Park including Crystal Cave and its wildlife
- Or one that not only includes Crystal Cave, Scarborough Beach and the Pinnacles Desert – taking you further north to the Pinnacles Desert.
Cave Tour Prices
To purchase a Crystal Cave Yanchep tour either buy at the Yanchep National Park Visitors Centre or online on the Crystal Cave website (see above).
- $7.50 /child
- There are four tours per day
What to Take With You in Yanchep Crystal Cave:
When spending time in Yanchep National Park you will want to have good walking shoes and a day trip bag that includes:
- Camera or at least a Smartphone
- A light jumper/sweater (it is cool in the cave)
Get the entire
More Things to Do in Perth, Western Australia
Perth and Western Australia offers so much natural beauty to explore like:
- The Pinnacles Desert
- Lake Thetis
- Busselton and the Margaret River Region
- A Perth Mint Tour
You may also like to purchase one of these guidebooks on Perth and Western Australia* for more ideas.
- We paid our own entry costs.
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- Additional Affiliate links* with Viator