Penong is a great place to stop on the Eyre Highway. Just 74km west of Ceduna, you can find some of the Far West Coast’s best attractions on the trip from Ceduna to Penong. From nearby surf beaches to historic museums, Penong is a great destination to head for a day trip on a self-drive tour or even stop for an overnight trip on the way across the Nullarbor.
The drive from Ceduna to Penong offers quite a few side trips to take in some of the highlights of the region. You can easily accomplish these stops in a long day trip or take advantage of the hospitality in Penong for an overnight break. Either way, you’ll find these incredible places to see on the way from Ceduna to Penong.
NOTE: This itinerary is designed to be used along with our map of Ceduna where you can view all locations and roads and informational cards and videos to assist and enhance your adventure.
Table of Contents
Itinerary for Ceduna to Penong self-drive tour
Stop 1: The Pantry Tree
On the Eyre Highway just before you come into Penong town, you’ll find the Pantry Tree. This “pantry” or “pan tree” showcases the local sense of humour and is where people have hung pots from the branches. It’s a local icon and the perfect, unique and fun photo op as you pass by.
Stop 2: Penong Windmill Museum
As one of the most popular attractions on the Far West Coast, you should visit the Penong Windmill Museum when you arrive in town. Located right in the centre of Penong, the open-air museum showcases around 20 windmills from around the country to demonstrate the importance of these inventions on the agricultural history of the area. The museum is also home to the largest windmill in Australia, named Bruce, which attracts travellers from all around the country. See our map to find a couple of historical buildings in the immediate area too.
Step 3: Lake MacDonnell (Pink Lake)
Just towards the end of the main street of town, you can turn left down Point Sinclair Road which heads south to the coast. Just 14km down this road is Lake MacDonnell. This lake is a former salt mine site on the largest gypsum deposit in Australia. The incredibly high levels of salt combined with algae and bacteria in the water produce a brilliant pink colour. This sight has slowly attracted hundreds of travellers and keen photographers who love to capture the unique pink colour of the lake.
It’s worth noting however that the lake is at its brightest pink when it’s dry. You might be disappointed if there’s been considerable rain recently. You should also know that it’s a public road, so do not block the road while trying to take photos. You should be able to find somewhere to safely pull over and walk to take your photos.
Step 4: Cactus Beach at Point Sinclair
If you continue down the road past the lake to the coast, you’ll find yourself at Point Sinclair. This dramatic coastal point on the eastern side of the Great Australian Bight is home to Cactus Beach, one of the most famous, world-class surf breaks in the country. While it feels secluded, the beach attracts surfers from around the world who come to surf the three notorious breaks in the bay.
There is also a jetty at Point Sinclair which is popular for fishing and swimming in the safe swimming enclosure which is present during the summer months. It’s important to know that these are considered ‘out of council’ areas and the infrastructure and maintenance is usually funded, completed, and serviced by the locals who do so voluntarily, so be respectful to the area and the locals! It’s important to note further that memorials, plaques and the like are not just symbols in these areas but are highly regarded family and community members of families living locally for many generations, often since the pioneering era, and it will not be taken lightly by anyone to have these interfered with.
Return to Ceduna
You can return to Ceduna from Penong back along the Eyre Highway.
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