In the Shark Bay World Heritage region lies the stunning Hamelin Pool Stromatolites. To get there, you will need to drive 27 kilometres along Shark Bay Road from the North West Coastal Highway.
To the untrained eye, the stromatolites will look like a scatter of rock formations but these fascinating fossils actually hold the title for being the oldest and largest living fossils on earth. The stromatolites are historically significant as they are made of cyanobacteria which are almost identical to organisms that were alive some 3.5 billion years ago. Due to their use of photosynthesis, scientists claim that they have had a big role to play in creating our current atmosphere.
Given its natural importance in the world, the Hamelin pool has attracted many geologists and botanists over the years. The stromatolites provide key evidence as to how the world looked billions of years ago when stromatolites were commonly found across the water.
Today, the Hamelin Pool Stromatolites is a huge tourist attraction. Visitors are given the opportunity to get an intimate look at these stunning life forms by walking along a boardwalk which runs over the stromatolites below. Along the boardwalk you will find a host of information panels. These panels provides you with information about how the stromatolites were formed and how they have grown to their current size and in relatively undisturbed conditions.
Things to keep in mind when visiting Hamelin pool:
- The Stromatolites are best viewed at low tide
- If you are planning to stay the night there are two accommodation options. The Hamelin Pool Caravan Park and Hamelin Outback Station Stay.
- The closest town is Denham which is located 30 minutes away from Hamelin Pool