Coral Bay Ecotours respectfully acknowledges the traditional occupants of the region, Baiyungu people of the Yamatji language group, and thank them for their continued cooperation with us, allowing us all to appreciate and enjoy the Ningaloo Reef area.
The Ningaloo Coast is part of the Baiyungu, Yinikurtira & Thalanyji peoples’ traditional land and sea country. They have inhabited the area for over 35,000 years. The region is extremely significant containing aboriginal sites such as burial grounds, middens and fish traps, and provide the earliest record of marine resource use in Australia. The word Ningaloo means “deepwater” from the local Yinigudura tribe. Reference - Ocean Wise
Swim with whale sharks, humpback whales, manta rays, turtles & much more on the World Heritage Ningaloo Reef
You're comfort & safety is our priority
Our charter vessels are designed for the Ningaloo Reef
Experienced crew offering professional service
Wildlife experiences that you won't forget
CORAL BAY ECOTOURS
Coral Bay Ecotours is a marine tour company specialising in marine interactions on the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Ningaloo Marine Park of Western Australia.
Located in Coral Bay with a backdrop of red desert, there is over 500 species of fish, 200 species of coral and an abundance of Australia’s most prized megafauna.
With daily encounters with Manta rays, Sea Turtles, Reef Sharks, Dolphins and seasonal encounters with Whale Sharks, Humpback Whales and Dugongs,
there's no wonder this place is
Australia’s best kept secret!
To facilitate personally rewarding interaction with the world heritage Ningaloo Reef marine ecology to enjoy, explore and connect in the most sustainable and environmentally friendly way.
FAMILY BUSINESS EST. 1994
Coral Bay Ecotours is a family business founded in 1994 by the Bailye’s.
When Ken Bailye and his wife first arrived in 1993, Coral Bay was a very different place to what it is now. An undeveloped community situated on a reef that was so remote very few people knew of it. All boats were launched from Bill’s Bay and the town had an off-grid kind of feeling to it. It was a popular holiday place for farmers and other adventurous souls escaping the winter months. But for Ken and his family, Coral Bay was a back-to-nature lifestyle change. Ken was a passionate environmentalist and began running tours in 1994 through “Glass Bottom Boat Ecology Cruises”. With concerns about the future of Coral Bay, Ken formed close connections with the Baiyungu people, the traditional owners of the Coral Bay area and surrounds. These connections remain strong to this day through Ken’s three sons John, Roger & Gavin.
Roger is the second eldest and has lived in Coral Bay for 17 years managing the family business. Roger (BSc Sustainable Management) continues to share his family's passion for the Ningaloo Reef with his guests and staff members.
NINGALOO MARINE PARK
Western Australia’s Ningaloo Reef is a world-renown marine wonderland and is the world's largest and most accessible fringing reef. It hosts an incredible diversity of tropical & temperate marine flora & fauna.
The abundance of marine life and the contrasting white sandy beaches against the red desert lands, makes this little piece of paradise Australia’s best kept secret!
UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Ningaloo Coast was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011 due to it’s outstanding natural assets and cultural significance. The 604,500 hectare marine & terrestrial property of Ningaloo Coast, is one of the largest nearshore reef systems in the world.
The land features an extensive network of underground cave & water courses, holding high species endemism (unique to this area). An estimated 300 to 500 whale sharks aggregate annually coinciding with the mass coral spawning and upwelling currents. The marine environment contains a high diversity of habitats including lagoon, reef, open ocean, the continental slope & the continental shelf. Intertidal systems such as rocky shores, sandy beaches, estuaries and mangroves are all found locally as well. Reference - UNESCO
Our whale shark vessel is built for speed, comfort and safety for open ocean cruising.
Designed for shallow water cruising and wildlife interactions, Kurni Ku is the perfect vessel for swimming with mantas.
Designed specifically for the shallow reef systems of Coral Bay, there is no better way to experience the reefs
Our 3 charter vessels are designed for cruising the Ningaloo Reef. They each have specific features that make them ideal for different wildlife encounters.
Your comfort & safety is our priority!
MEET THE TEAM
We believe our experienced & passionate crew members are what sets us aside from just a regular tour company.
Each of our crew members holds a current First Aid Certification and have undertaken Whale Shark Interaction Training & Humpback in-water Interaction Training with the Parks and Wildlife Service.
Among our team we have 5 qualified skippers who drive our 3 boats; Thunder, Kurni Ku & Nhanya Ku. Our crew also attain a wealth of knowledge about marine ecosystems & the Ningaloo Reef to add an educational spin to our tours.
In the team we also have Marine Biologists, Snorkel Instructors, Underwater Photographers, Tourism Experts, Sailors and Free-diving & Scuba-diving Instructors.
Check out our crew profiles below to see who will be taking you out to explore the Ningaloo Reef!
Eco Guide / Photographer
Photographer - Daniel Thomas Images
Coral Bay Ecotours
DANIEL THOMAS IMAGES
Dan Browne - photographer onboard our Marine Eco Safari
Dan grew up on the Western Australian coast spending his time sailing & surfing. It wasn’t until Dan started working in Coral Bay that he discovered his hidden passion for underwater photography. Dan loves changing peoples perceptions on sharks and wants to show his audience how misunderstood these creatures really are!
Sony Alpha Awards- Winner "Nature" category -2019
35awards-Best Ocean Dwellers Photographer - 2020
35awards-Best of Ocean Dwellers contest - 2020
email | firstname.lastname@example.org
instagram | danielthomasbrowne
ALEX KYDD PHOTO
Alex Kydd - Photographer onboard our Whale Shark Safari & Humpback Whale Safari
Alex is an ocean lover who developed a passion for photography. Born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, he completed university studies in marine biology and worked on the Great Barrier Reef where he learned to take photos below the water with a basic compact camera. Four years on Alex is now based on Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia pursuing his dream. He works full time as a photographer. The vast majority of Alex’s photography is taken while freediving.
He is on a mission to showcase the beauty of our oceans in the hope that we can all do our best to protect and preserve.
Australian Photography Awards - Winner "wildlife" category - 2019
William Nolan - photographer onboard our Marine Eco Safari and Whale Shark Safari
Will is a freediver & underwater photographer originally from the UK. Will began shooting surf in his teenage years and now specialises in taking underwater photos on a single breath. Based on the Northers NSW coast for the past few years. Will moved to Coral Bay in March 2022 to pursue a dream of capturing wildlife moments on Ningaloo Reef
email | email@example.com
Instagram | willnolanphoto
CORAL BAY CONSERVATION GROUP
The Conservation Group was established in 2006 and has been heavily involved in clean-up initiatives, the aluminium tin-can recycling project & holding market stalls promoting eco-friendly reusables to the community & tourists.
The Conservation Group has been creatively finding solutions to help make our tour even more eco-friendly! Some of the initiatives we now partake in are: reducing our plastic use (bread bags for bakery orders & bees wax wraps), composting all food scraps, natural cleaning products & mask sprays and re-usable drink bottles among crew members. This is an on-going project!
Caring for the Sea & the Community
PARKS AND WILDLIFE SERVICE
Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) manage the Ningaloo Marine Park and aim to protect its ecological, cultural and historical significance. They work closely with local stakeholders including Indigenous communities, science researchers, community groups, tour operators, recreational users and private land managers.
Coral Bay Ecotours proudly works with DBCA, contributing to their world-leading Whale Shark Tourism management strategy. Part of your ticket proceeds contributes to on-going environmental research and education through ECOEANS (an Australian NGO).
Managers of Ningaloo Marine Park
CORAL BAY LOCAL BUSINESSES
Fins Café is Coral Bay's only café open all day and into the night. Open from 8am-late, this lovely little spot is your go-to for the best coffee in town and a great range menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner (BYO alcohol). Out recommendations would be the eggs benny or breaky wrap for breakfast!! Yum!
Reef café, open only for dinner from 5.45pm till late is Coral Bay's famous licensed Italian restaurant, with a wonderful selection of pizza, pasta and other delicious meals, including the best fresh chicken schnitzels in town!