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A seaside haven at the heart of wildflower country, Green Head brings you the best of both worlds. To the east, flora hotspot Lesueur National Park showcases some of the richest plant diversity on Earth with 820 native flowering species. While on its shores, a playful colony of Australian sea lions invites you into their world for a close encounter. Getting there is part of the adventure when you follow the 415 kilometre Indian Ocean Drive from Yanchep, just north of Perth. The journey takes three hours, but you can take your time to enjoy some of the breathtaking beaches along the way, or stop to gaze in awe at one of Australia's most unique landscapes, the Pinnacles Desert. If you're hitting the wildflower trail in spring, make Green Head your base beside Lesueur National Park. Grab your camera and snap the striking Grevillea, Leschenaultia, orchids and pearl flowers, some of which occur nowhere else on Earth. Keen birdwatchers may also spot some 100 plus species here, including the rare Carnaby's black cockatoo. More fauna encounters can be found by joining a boat tour of the surrounding islands for some fun interaction with the friendly breeding colony of Australian sea lions. Closer to town, Dynamite Bay and a string of white sandy beaches offer some of the best windsurfing conditions in Western Australia, not to mention excellent beach fishing, swimming, snorkelling and diving. These coastal waters have seen a lot of action since the first known European visitors arrived in the 1600s, sailing the trading routes from Holland to Indonesia. Several Dutch ships were wrecked on the reefs, including the Gilt Dragon and Waeckende Boey. You can retrace the steps of more recent visitors, taking the four wheel drive track to Stockyard Gully National Park. Part of the old north stock route used in the 1850s, livestock and stockmen took shelter in the caves here on their journey from Geraldton to the markets in Perth. More comfortable accommodation can be found today in Green Head, where you can take your pick from self-contained holiday homes, hotel or a caravan park.
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