Tunnel Creek National Park

Cave of Bats - Pigeon Cave - Tunnel Creek Cave - Dimalurru Cave

Useful Information

Location: 125 km east of Derby, 115 km from Fitzroy Crossing, 30 km south-east of Windjana Gorge. Kimberley Region.
From Great Northern Highway M1 Broome-Kununurra, 42 km northwest of Fitzroy Crossing turn off onto Leopold Downs road to the northeast 68 km.
From Derby east on Gibb River Beef Road, 125 km to the park, 59 km of the road is unsealed.
(-17.607706, 125.145507)
Open: MAY to OCT daily.
Park is usually inaccessible during the wet season.
Fee: Day Use Fee: Car AUD 15, Motorcycle AUD 8.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst Cave Devonian limestone
Light: bring torch
Guided tours: L=750 m.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Address: Dimalurru (Tunnel Creek) National Park, 111 Herbert Street, Broome, WA 6725, Tel: +61-8-9195-5500. E-mail:
Dimalurru (Tunnel Creek) National Park, Leopold Downs Rd, Wunaamin Miliwundi Ranges WA 6728, Tel: +61-8-9192-1036.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


01-APR-1897 Aboriginal leader Jandamarrakilled outside the cave entrance.


Tunnel Creek National Park or Dimalurru National Park is located in the Napier Range. The limestones here were formed by a Devonian reef about 375 to 350 million years ago. The limestone was uplifted and became subject to weathering and karstification 20 Million years ago. The karst of this area is among the oldest on Earth. Only one of the caves, a huge tunnel-like passage through which a creek flows, is open for visitors. This tunnel is responsible for the name of the Park. It is generally called Tunnel Creek or Tunnel Creek Cave, sometimes even Cave of Bats, but its real name is Dimalurru.

Tunnel Creek is not developed, but rather easy to visit. A huge passage, 750 m long, 3-12 m high and 15 m wide, offers no special difficulties but one. It is necessary to wade through several permanent pools where occasionally freshwater crocodiles (Crocodylus johnstoni) are found. Obviously they are cave visitors (trogloxenes) and do not really live in caves. Freshwater crocodiles eat frogs, fish, and birds and are generally not a threat to humans if left undisturbed. Nevertheless, we suggest some care, especially with small children.

At least five species of bats live in the cave, including ghost bats and fruit bats, huge bats (megabats) who feed on fruit. They enter the cave at a place where a section of the cave roof has collapsed. This place also allows the daylight to enter and is really a nice spot.

The cave is decorated by numerous speleothems and some Aboriginal rock paintings. An Aboriginal leader known as Jandamarra, also known as Pigeon, used the cave as a hideout. He led an armed rebellion against European settlers, after they had been deprived of their traditional hunting areas and forced to work on the stations. He was killed in front of the cave entrance in 1897. After him the cave is also called Pigeon Cave.

We recommend suitable equipment, especially torches, two per person, preferably waterproof. A helmet is not really important, there is no stooping, but its really helpful together with a headlamp. Gum boots or sturdy boots, sweater, old clothes, clothes to change, towel and so forth. As someone else mentioned on his page: most say "use sturdy boots or trekking shoes", but if you like your boots leave them in the car. We recommend gum boots, but actually neoprene water shoes, which are used for walking at beaches or canyoning, are also very good. Even plastic sandals are better than trekking shoes which will soak up the water and become heavy like lead. Also, they might not get dry for days and in the worst case they disintegrate.

To reach the cave a 4x4 is required, so many tourists decide to make a guided day trip instead. Most include the nearby gorges and the cave.