Direction Island Heritage Trail
  • Length: 3.5km

  • Duration: 1hr

  • Grade: 1

  • Style: Circuit

  • Start: Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo

  • End: Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo

  • Location: Direction Island

  • Closest Town:

  • Distance from CBD: 2608km

  • State: WA

  • Latitude: -12.09022325

  • Longitude: 96.88430371

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2WD Access

4WD Access

Public Transport

Bitumen Road

Gravel Road

Steep Road

Winding Road

Speed Bumps

Vehicle Ford

Entry Fee

Large Car Park

Small Car Park

Accessible Parking

Accessible Toilet

Public Toilets

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Picnic Shelter

Picnic Table

BBQ Facilities

Campfire Pit

Camping Area

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Direction Island...

Select items to indicate features found along the trail.

Concrete Path

Timber Boardwalk

Gravel Path

Sandy Trail

Rough Trail

Undefined Trail

Prams & Strollers

Manual Wheelchair

Motorised Wheelchair

Bicycle Trail

Mountain Bike Trail

Historic Rail Trail

Dog Friendly

Urban Walk

Coast & Beach

Historic Lighthouse

Waterfalls & Lakes

Rainforest Walk

Goldfields & Mining

Heritage Walk

Aboriginal Art

Alpine Region

Alpine Huts

Exposed Ledges

Rock Scrambling

Steep Terrain

Bush Bashing

River Crossings

Scenic Viewpoints

Well Marked

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Fishing Spots

Swimming Spots

Overnight Campsites

Trail Running

Horse Riding


Direction Island Heritage Trail is a 3.5km, grade 1 circuit hike, located in Direction Island, Western Australia. The hike should take approximately 1hr to complete.

Hike Summary

As with most other islands in the Keeling group, Direction Island has a fascinating history. This easy 3.5 kilometer trail takes walkers from end to end and past interpretive panels telling its story.

Direction Island sits to the north east of the atoll and is accessible twice a week by the local ferry service from West and Home Islands. The jetty sits adjacent to the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Interpretive Gazebo and the Trail Head. The Trail has a west and east loop, intersected by the Trail Head and Gazebo. The Direction Island Heritage Trail has 25 interpretive panels along its 3.5km course. The island is very flat and well shaded, however the west end of the trail may have palm frond litter. Direction Island has a wood BBQ, covered picnic tabels and drop toilets. A great place to swim, snorkel and relax, the trail allows walkers a chance to learn about the establishment of the Cable Station, life and times of the Station, the Emden and Sydney WWI story, the Ayesha story, WWII history, military units based on the islands, Catalina flights and more recent history associated with international yachts mooring at the islands. An easy trail with each loop taking approximately 1 hour, suitable for families and those with moderate fitness levels and abilities. There is no drinking water on Direction Island, and always cover well from the effects of the sun and mosquitos.  

About the region

Direction Island is the second largest of a group of ten islands and atolls unofficially called the Mackerel Islands. Two of the islands, Thevenard Island and Direction Island, have accommodation for tourists. It is one of the few places in the world where people can rent their own island for a holiday or vacation stay. Direction Island can be reached by a ferry service operating from the mainland at Onslow or by recreational boats. For vessels under 6 metres in length, there is a private boat mooring at the island.


Start Point: The Direction Island Heritage Trail starts and finishes at the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo, adjacent to the jetty.

End Point: The Direction Island Heritage Trail starts and finishes at the Commemorative Sydney Emden 100 Gazebo, adjacent to the jetty.

Region: Direction Island, Indian Ocean Islands

For more information, a location map and GPS file please visit Trails WA. 

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