Disclosure: Some of my links are affiliates (of which I use), which means that I may receive a small amount of commission if you buy something through them. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This does not cost you a cent, nor do you pay more; I get a little towards the cost of running this blog, so I can keep it going. If you are thinking of booking through any of these companies, I would be very grateful if you could use my links. I am appreciative of all your support.
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 to be 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 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.
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 3 times a day.
Camel Rides in Broome Western Australia
Broome Camel Safaris
Alison Bird deeply cares for her camels and has trained them from the wild and brought up orphan calves. Alison and her husband, Allen, now have over 30 camels which are all loved.
You can tell their camels by the blue blankets. They offer morning, afternoon and sunset camel rides on Cable Beach.
The most popular of this holiday activity is the one hour sunset ride. Viator are currently offering a full refund if you cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. They also have a Lowest Price Guarantee.
If you prefer a shorter ride, the 30-minute pre-sunset tour is great value.
Red Sun Camels
Red Sun Camels began in 1991 but was purchased by John and Janet Geappen in 2000 and now have over 40 camels.
They opened the Camel Store in Broome in 2007 where you can purchase camel related products. You can tell Red Sun Camels by their red blankets.
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.
Sundowner Camel Tours are the ones with yellow blankets.
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.
Also, note that Red Sun Camels have a child weight limit of 60kg.
Our Decision and Review
To be honest, they all had good reviews on Tripadvisor and the prices were pretty similar as well. There wasn’t any logic to my decision; I just ensured the reviews of the animal conditions were excellent and people were happy with the tour.
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.
They are easy to find, just turn right at the rocks from the main access point on Cable Beach.
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.
Not long after, we spotted the camels approaching and they were brought alongside a Ute. This is used as a loading platform to make it easier to get off and on the camels.
We then had to gather round so that they could decide who goes on what camel and with whom. Obviously, they 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 handlers 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 use 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 all thoroughly enjoyed the experience and found the pre-sunset tour perfect for us. I didn’t find it uncomfortable at all but might have after an hour. I would advise wearing loose clothing though.
Add camel rides in Broome to your bucket list.
Accommodation in Cable Beach
We stayed at Broome Beach Resort and found it to be great for families and good value.
For 4 nights in October 2021, these were the rates I costed out for a 2-bedroom apartment for 2 adults and 2 children:
Stayz is the cheapest but it is a private let (like Airbnb) so only one apartment available. If it is free for your dates, that’s the cheapest I have seen. BOOK STAYZ HERE.
Other Tours in Broome
I use different sites to try and get the best possible price for flights.
First I visit matrix.itasoftware.com to get an idea of the cheapest dates, but you can’t book through this site.
Next I compare the cost of flights with Trip.com and try different routes.
I mainly use Booking.com for accommodation as they consistently have the lowest rates with free cancellation on most properties.
To compare rental car company prices, I use Rentalcars.com. They are world’s biggest car rental site, comparing all main brands including Europcar, Budget, Ace, Hertz, Avis, and Alamo.
Don’t travel anywhere without travel insurance, it’s not worth the risk.
Travel insurance: simple & flexible
You can buy and claim online, even after you’ve left home. Travel insurance from WorldNomads.com is available to people from over 130 countries. It’s designed for adventurous travellers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities.
Travel Information & Guides
This Australia Travel Guide, which includes all essential information and tips, will help with the planning of your holiday to this beautiful country.
Other Broome Articles
For more things to do in Western Australia, check out this Western Australia Travel Guide.
If you found our Camel Rides in Broome guide helpful, please consider booking through one of our links. It won’t cost you anything but will help towards the cost of running this site. Thank you 🙂
Note: We were paying guests and received no discounts or benefits for writing this article.
Signup for our latest news and special offers!