3 Camel Rides in Broome Western Australia – Which is best?

Three operators offer camel rides in Broome, so which one should you choose? This article will compare the three camel rides and help you make a decision.

Broome is located in Australia’s North West region, Western Australia. It is well known for its Cable Beach, which features 22 kilometers of white sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters. There are three camel rides along Cable Beach that offer tourists the opportunity to experience the beauty of the area from a different perspective and is one of the most popular things to do in Broome.

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camel rides on cable beach broome
Sunset camel rides in Broome

Camel Information & Facts

There are two types of camels; Arabian Camel (Dromedary) and Bactrian Camel. The Dromedary camels have one hump and are the ones found in Broome. They live to about 25 years old in the wild, but Domestic camels can live up to 40 years old.

These animals can grow to 7 feet at the hump and weigh 1600 pounds. Their hump stores fat which can be broken down into energy when food is scarce. They hardly sweat, so they don’t require much water. The domestic ones will drink around 25 litres a day, but a thirsty camel can drink 115 litres in 13 minutes.

Unlike most animals, when walking, the camel moves both feet on one side of its body, then both feet on the other. 

camels on cable beach with red blankets
Red Sun Camels on Cable Beach

History of Camels in Australia

Camels were introduced from India and Afghanistan into Australia in the 19th Century to help with transport and workloads. Muslim cameleers were brought in to service the South Australian outback and soon began their own businesses importing and running camel trains. It is estimated that around 15,000 camels were imported into Australia at that time. The handlers were known as Afghans or Ghans, to which the train, The Ghan, gets its name.

After the arrival of motorised transport, camels weren’t required and so were released into the wild. Here they thrived, and today Australia has the largest population of feral camels in the world. This has become a problem for outback communities where they destroy fences and pipes and drink the waterholes dry. The government-funded a culling program that killed around 160,000 camels from 2009 to 2013.

So you could say that these camel ride companies are saving the camels from death. I’m not a supporter of animal tourism when the animals suffer. However, I think these are well looked after; they are fed, watered, there is a weight limit for passengers, and they only work two to three times a day.

tourists on camel ride along cable beach
Our camel ride along Cable Beach

Camel Rides in Broome Western Australia

Three companies operate camel rides in Broome; Broome Camel Safaris, Red Sun Camels, and Sundowner Camel Tours.

Broome Camel Safaris

Broome Camel Safaris appear to be the most popular company that offers camel rides along Cable Beach, going on the number of reviews on Tripadvisor. They are also highly rated with five stars out of nearly 1,000 reviews! That’s pretty impressive.

Alison Bird deeply cares for her camels and has trained them and brought up orphan calves from the wild. Alison and her husband, Allen, now have over 30 camels which are all loved. They have a strict 90kg per person weight limit policy, with a combined weight of two passengers not exceeding 170 kg. Children are between five and fifteen but must not weigh more than 60 kg; otherwise will be charged as an adult. Children up to four years old can sit on an adult’s lap.

You can tell their camels by the blue blankets. They offer morning, afternoon, and sunset camel rides on Cable Beach, and every lady receives a pair of freshwater pearl earrings.

The most popular holiday activity is the one hour sunset camel ride, where you get to give your camel a carrot at the end of the ride.

Viator is currently offering a full refund if you cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. They also have the Lowest Price Guarantee. See prices here.

If you prefer a shorter ride, the 30-minute pre-sunset tour is great value. It also allows you to take photos of the camel train at sunset.

Red Sun Camels

Red Sun Camels began in 1991 but were purchased by John and Janet Geappen in 2000, who now have over 40 camels. The couple opened the Camel Store in Broome in 2007, where you can purchase camel-related products.

Red Sun Camels have red blankets and offer a sunset tour, pre-sunset sampler tour, and a morning tour. They have a strict 100 kg maximum per person and two people ride each camel. If you have a child on your lap (0 to 4 years), you jointly cannot exceed the 100 kg limit. As with Broome Camel Safaris, the combined weight of two passengers cannot exceed 170 kg. Child rates apply for 5 to 15 year olds.

family riding on camels along cable beach
Us riding camels on the pre-sunset tour

Sundowner Camel Tours

Steve Madden (I believe to be the previous owner of Red Sun Camels) is now back in Broome and operating Sundowner Camel Tours. He has trained his camels from the wild and has also been breeding camels for many years. He always puts his animals’ welfare before anything else and has a strict weight limit policy of under 90 kg.

Sundowner Camel Tours has yellow blankets and offers two rides – sunset and pre-sunset.

Weight Limit of Camel Rides in Broome

There are weight restrictions for camel rides in Broome to safeguard the health of these animals.

Sundowner Camels and Broome Camel Safari both have a 90kg weight limit and Red Sun has a 100kg limit per adult. Child weight limits are 60 kg and a couple cannot exceed 170 kg.

Camel Rides in Broome Review

All three camel ride operators have mainly good reviews on Tripadvisor, and the prices are also similar. We had a voucher to use, so we booked with Red Sun Camels, who we were happy with but would like to try Broome Camel Safaris next time.

Pre Sunset Tour Review

We opted for this tour as I thought a 30-minute ride would be long enough and wanted to be on the beach to take photos of the camel trains at sunset. It was also a cheaper option for our family of four, and you still have the same experience, although not at sunset.

Also, this end of Cable Beach gets very busy around sunset and lots of 4wd vehicles park and drive along the beach. However, the camels do go further up the beach.

vehicles along cable beach at susnet
4wds along Cable Beach at susnet

The camel operators are easy to find. Turn right at the rocks from the main access point on Cable Beach and look for your chosen tour operator’s colour. Make sure you leave plenty of time to get there, though, as they won’t wait and will leave without you.

Upon arrival, we were offered a complimentary drink of either a beer, sparkling wine (thank you very much) or water. Once signed in, we relaxed on the beach while waiting for the rest of the group to arrive.

We spotted the camels approaching soon, and they were brought alongside a Ute, used as a loading platform to make it easier to get off and on the camels. I believe at this stage, Red Camels are the only operator to offer this.

ute on cable beach used to get people on and off the camels
Red Sun Camels using a ute to get people on and off the camels

We then had to gather around to decide who goes on what camel and with whom. The guides try to keep families together.

Soon it was our time to climb the steps onto the platform and wait for the camel to come alongside. It was an easy swing of the leg over and off we go.

It felt bumpy to start with, but we soon got used to the feeling and enjoyed a gentle ride along the white sands of Cable Beach. During the ride, the friendly guides told us the name of our camel and all about how she became part of their camel train.

The friendly camels were constantly coming alongside for a pat and a stroke. They are really cute animals with their long eyelashes, and they didn’t smell at all (or spit).

On the return part of the journey, the staff uses your camera to take photos of you on the camel, so you have a memory of it all free of charge. There were options to buy professional photos too.

Before we knew it, the ride was over, and we were back alongside the loading platform to dismount the camel.

We thoroughly enjoyed the experience and found the pre-sunset tour perfect. I didn’t find it uncomfortable but might have after an hour. I would advise wearing loose clothing, though. If you’re wondering it if is ethical to ride camels, we asked ourselves the same thing. Under no circumstances would we ride elephants, but after some research and seeing how well the camels were treated, we were happy with our decision. World Nomads have a good article about this dilemma.

Add camel rides in Broome to your bucket list; it’s a true Broome iconic experience and great fun for the family.

camels at sunset on cable beach
Iconic camel train at sunset on Cable Beach

Other Tours in Broome

Accommodation in Cable Beach

We stayed at Broome Beach Resort and found it to be great for families and good value.

the pool at broome beach resort

Western Australia Travel Guide

Save money planning your holiday

Flights: We use different sites to get the best possible price for flights. Check matrix.itasoftware.com to get an idea of the cheapest dates, but you can’t book through this site. Compare the cost of flights with Kiwi.com and try different routes.

Accommodation: We mainly use Booking.com for accommodation as they consistently have the lowest rates with free cancellation on most properties. We also book through Stayz for private accommodation as they are usually cheaper than Airbnb.

Car Rental: To compare rental car company prices, we use Discover Cars, an award winning car rental comparison website. They offer competitive pricing in over 10,000 locations worldwide and are highly-rated.

Campervan Rental:Drivenow is a good resource to compare campervan hire in Western Australia as it includes all the large companies like Britz, Maui, Jucy as well as smaller ones.

Tours: We use third-party sites ViatorGet Your Guide & Klook due to their free cancellation policies, instant confirmation, price guarantees, and mobile ticketing. We occasionally book through Red Balloon too.

Mobile: Telstra has the best coverage in Western Australia. We buy our sims through Boost who provide 4G/4GX coverage on full Telstra 4G Mobile Network. With up to 82GB for 28 days or 240GB for 12 months, unlimited national calls & text, and international inclusions on selected plans, you’re sure to find the right prepaid SIM for you. See plans here.

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3 Camel Rides in Broome Western Australia - Which is best?

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23 thoughts on “3 Camel Rides in Broome Western Australia – Which is best?”

  1. Very informative post, Wendy! I didn’t even realize there were camels in Australia! So I enjoyed reading your post and learning a bit about how they were brought to Australia in addition to the info on the rides. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  2. That is amazing. I had no idea Australia had the largest population of feral camels. Another example of the chaos that can result from introduced species. Then again it’s nice to know I don’t have to go all the way to the Middle East to experience a camel ride 🙂

    Reply
    • I didn’t know about the numbers either until I researched it. I also didn’t realise that’s what the Ghan is named after.

      Reply
  3. Such an informative and great post reviewing the camel ride! I love how they are helping to save those camels. I went on a camel safari in India for a full 8 hours. Although I loved it, it was so uncomfortable but we didn’t have nice seats and handles like these. I love how they have a platform for you to get on. That is a huge plus as it is a bit scary to get on without it! Excellent info and history too!

    Reply
  4. What an informative post Wendy! I didn’t know that there are different types of camel and they also exist in Australia. That’s great to know.

    Looks like your whole family had a great experience. The sunset photo is just stunning!

    Reply
  5. You are so lucky there was a loading platform. Sitting on a riding camel is a scary experience. You must be the only person bar me, who doesn’t find this uncomfortable. I would happily do it again.

    Reply
    • The loading platform is one of the reasons I chose this company. It looked a lot easier for us and the camels. I would definitely do it again, especially somewhere exotic.

      Reply
  6. I had no idea that there were camels in Australia! This looks like a really fun experience and it sounds like the tour companies take good care of their animals.

    Reply
  7. We rode camels in Morocco and I’ll never forget it. I do have to say it’s quite the bumpy ride though. This looks amazing though, especially along the beach 🙂

    Reply

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