The coronavirus (COVID-19) has the potential to do great harm to the Kimberley’s 221 remote Aboriginal communities.
For updated border control information visit the website wa.gov.au
16 November 2021 - Northern Territory transitions to a ‘low risk’ jurisdiction
5 November 2021 - WA’s Safe Transition Plan to provide a soft landing out of pandemic
5 November 2021 - Public health advice issued for recent arrivals from the Northern Territory and Queensland
3 November 2021 - Based on the latest health advice, New South Wales will transition from ‘extreme risk’ to ‘high risk’ under WA’s controlled border arrangements from 12.01am Saturday, November 6.
30 October 2021 - Based on health advice, approved travellers from low, medium, high and extreme risk jurisdictions will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to enter Western Australia. From 12.01am, Friday 5 November, 2021 travellers from medium, high and extreme risk jurisdictions will need to be fully vaccinated. From 12.01am, Monday 15 November, 2021, travellers from low risk jurisdictions will need to be fully vaccinated. People not eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, such as those under the age of 12 or have recognised medical reasons for not receiving the vaccine, are exempt from this requirement.
Under the WA Government’s Remote Aboriginal Communities Directions, the only people who can enter a remote Aboriginal community are residents of those communities and those who are:
- providing essential services and supplies
- going to work or school there
- entering for family or cultural reasons
- delivering a community program or activity
- entering in an emergency.
These people cannot enter a community if they have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19, or if they are waiting for a test result or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19.
Travellers can drive through a remote Aboriginal community only if they do not stop or come into contact with any person in the community.
Police have the power to enforce the travel restrictions, and fines of up to $50,000 can be issued.
For more information read the Restrictions on travel to remote Aboriginal communities – frequently asked questions.
- Aboriginal people living in remote areas are more at risk of serious illness from the coronavirus than other people.
- If the coronavirus gets into an Aboriginal community, it is likely to spread quickly and make residents very sick.
- To help protect our Aboriginal communities, there are strict travel restrictions in place.
- Tourists and travellers are not allowed to enter any remote Aboriginal community in Western Australia.
- Fines of up to $50,000 may apply to anyone who breaches the restrictions.
- Only some Aboriginal communities are excluded from the restrictions.
- For more information, call 13 COVID (13 268 43) or visit wa.gov.au or read COVID-19 coronavirus: Remote Aboriginal communities travel
List of Aboriginal Communities OPEN to visitors here
List of Aboriginal Communities CLOSED to visitors here
Which remote Aboriginal communities, or parts of them, are currently excluded from the entry rules?
Read the latest updated list from wa.gov.au here as the situation may change before we can update this page.
The following exclusions are currently in place. Exclusion means these remote Aboriginal communities or community amenities listed below are open to tourists and travellers (unless otherwise stated).
Note: Community entry requirements apply for the following: Jigalong, Parnngurr, Punmu, Kunawarritji and Kiwirrkurra, and Ardyaloon.
Dampier Peninsula, West Kimberley
- Ardyaloon* - Bardi, One Arm Point - Only the airstrip and Ardyaloon Hatchery and Round Rock (bookings are required) *Community entry requirements apply
- Burrguk Banana Wells (entire community)
- Chile Creek Jilirr
- Djaradjung Djarajung
- Djarindjin - Only Djarindjin roadhouse and Dampier Peninsula Police Station are open.
- Embulgun (entire community)
- Gnylmarung (entire community)
- Googar & Goonyool (entire community)
- Goombaragin (entire community)
- Gumbarnun (entire community)
- Honeymoon Beach. Please note Kalumburu remains closed, including for travellers seeking food and fuel on their way to and from Honeymoon Beach.
- Lombadina (entire community)
- Mercedes Cove (entire community) - Mercedes Cove Exclusive Coastal Retreat
- Middle Lagoon - Wulgurding
- Imintji - Immintji, Mount House, Saddlers Springs - Only Imintji Campground, Arts Centre, Roadhouse and store are open.
- Mimbi - Only Mimbi Visitor Access Road and Visitor Reception Building are open
- Mowanjum - Only Mowanjum Aboriginal Art and Culture Centre is open (*now closed until July 3 2021 due to Perth lockdown)
- Kupungarri - Mount Barnett , Kupingarra - Only Mt Barnett Roadhouse is open.
- Violet Valley campground in Baulu-Wah (excluded but not open for business)
- Carranya (entire community)
- Kandiwal - Only the Outback Spirit Ngauwudu Safari Camp and APT Mitchell Falls Wilderness Lodge (bookings required).
- Wuggubun - Card Creek, Wuggun (entire community)
- Doon Doon (Woolah) Caravan Park
- Doon Doon (Woolah) Roadhouse
Mid-West Gascoyne - read pdf here
- Karalundi - Only Karalundi Caravan Park and shop/cafe are open.
- Ilkulka (entire community)
- Kurrawang Only Kurrawang community office, chapel, basketball court, recreational areas and refuse site are open.
- Warakurna Giles Only Warakurna Roadhouse is open.
All other remote Aboriginal communities and their amenities are closed to tourists and travellers.
Read the full, latest list from wa.gov.au here
How do we know which communities have entry rules and which don’t?
Communities that are covered by the entry rules are listed in (Schedule 1) of the Remote Aboriginal Communities Directions. Before travelling to any remote Aboriginal community, you should look at the list of communities in the Directions. You should also contact the community first to find out what local protocols or risk management measures are in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Some remote Aboriginal communities have their own requirements for people entering. These requirements are in addition to the rules set out in the Remote Aboriginal Communities Directions.
Non-residents wanting to go into a remote Aboriginal community should contact the community before going there to find out what travel restrictions or entry requirements are in place.
Resources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and remote communities
Useful Maps: Remote Aboriginal Communities
If you are not aware of where remote communities are located, below are links maps of remote Aboriginal communities in the Kimberley region. These maps are publicly available on the Department of Planning Lands and Heritage website. Please do your best to plan before you leave and follow ALL signage instructions to avoid fines and penalties (not to mention the risks to our remote community populations).
Download map - ABL-AboriginalCommunities_East_Kimberley_r.pdf
Download map - ABL-AboriginalCommunities_Map2_A4_r.pdf
Download map - ABL-AboriginalCommunities_West_Kimberley_r.pdf
Where do I go more information?
If you would like more information, please contact the Complex Task Team – Remote Aboriginal Communities at RAC.MU@dpc.wa.gov.au.
You can also call 13 COVID (13 268 43).
COVID-19 coronavirus: Controlled interstate border
Information on WA’s controlled interstate border arrangement, conditions of entry and quarantine. Strict border controls are in place to limit the spread of COVID-19. The Chief Health Officer will continue to closely monitor community transmission in other states and territories and will advise the WA Government if any changes to our borders are required to keep Western Australians protected.
Remote Aboriginal community restrictions within Western Australia are still in place!!
Traveller Health Messaging
The Department of Health has made the following documents available for use by tourism businesses and Visitor Centres -
WE ENCOURAGE ALL LOCAL BUSINESSES TO DOWNLOAD AND PRINT THIS INFORMATION AND DISPLAY TO ENSURE WE CAN SPREAD THIS SAFETY MESSAGE WITH AS MANY VISITORS AS POSSIBLE.
If you are unsure, please contact the nearest visitor information centre to the area you wish to travel to.