In our list of the best things to do in Broome, we mentioned The Staircase to the Moon, Western Australia’s famous natural phenomenon.
As you plan your visit to Broome, we’ve compiled valuable tips and tricks to help you make the most of this incredibly unique occurrence.
We’ll cover the best places to see the Staircase to the Moon Broome, the best times to see the Staircase to the Moon, and photography tips for the Staircase to the Moon.
Understanding the Staircase to the Moon
The wet, rippled sand of Roebuck Bay gets exposed during extremely low tide, causing moonlight to reflect on the mudflats. When conditions are just right, this creates the illusion of a staircase stretching from the horizon toward the full moon.
This natural phenomenon happens two to three days a month during the full moon, with March to October being the best months to see the Staircase to the Moon.
The Best Places to See Staircase to the Moon Broome
It is important to plan if you want to see the Staircase to the Moon. Your best chance of witnessing this can’t-miss spectacle is from March through October.
There are several locations throughout the Kimberley region of Western Australia where you can experience the Staircase to the Moon, but Broome is the most popular location.
The Town Beach precinct is one of our favourite places to see the Staircase to the Moon. With its excellent vantage point, along with town markets once a month during the full moon, Town Beach makes the perfect viewing lookout.
The weather conditions play a significant role in the visibility of the Staircase to the Moon. Local tides, weather, and cloud cover may affect visibility, but here are the best times to see Staircase to the Moon Broome 2023.
Staircase to the Moon Dates 2023 as provided by The Broome Visitor Centre:
April 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Friday 7th April 6.34 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Saturday 8th April 7.13 pm
- Sunday 9th April 7.58 pm (Easter)
May 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Saturday 6th May 5.53 pm
- Sunday 7th May 6.42 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Monday 8th May 7.37 pm
June 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Monday 5th June 6.26 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Tuesday 6th June 7.31 pm
- Wednesday 7th June 8.38 pm
July 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Tuesday 4th July 6.20 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Wednesday 5th July 7.29 pm
- Thursday 6th July 8.35 pm
August 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Wednesday 2nd August 6.15 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Thursday 3rd August 7.21 pm
- Friday 4th August 8.23 pm
- Thursday 31st Aug 6.03 pm
September 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Friday 1st Sept 7.05 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Saturday 2nd Sept 8.05 pm
- Saturday 30th Sept 6.45 pm (town market from 4-8 pm)
October 2023 Staircase to the Moon Dates
- Sunday 1st Oct 7.45 pm
- Monday 2nd Oct 8.45 pm
- Sunday 29th Oct 6.26 pm (town market from 4 to 8 pm)
- Monday 30th Oct 7.28 pm
- Tuesday 31st Oct 8.29 pm
Planning Your Visit to Broome
Here are tips for increasing your chance of seeing the Staircase to the Moon:
- Book your Broome accommodation in advance
- Pack warm clothing — although Broome’s weather is often hot and sunny during the day, a lightweight sweater can come in handy on the cool shoreline at night
- Bring your camera and a tripod if you want to photograph the Staircase to the Moon
- Check local moonrise times and make sure to show up early to find a good vantage point — this experience draws visitors from all over the world, so find your spot early
- Check local tides and weather conditions
Related Reading: When Is the Best Time to Visit Broome?
Staircase to the Moon Markets
Staircase to the Moon Markets is scheduled during select nights during the full moon from 4 to 8 pm at the Town Beach precinct (located on Hamersley Street). Town Beach Night Markets also occur every Thursday night from June to September.
The town markets offer a family-friendly atmosphere, delectable local cuisine, live entertainment, handmade crafts, and local products, making the moon markets a perfect spot to hang out before and after you see the Staircase to the Moon.
Parking at the Town Beach can be limited during the Staircase to the Moon. Visitors can check out The Broome Explorer Bus for a convenient shuttle service.
Photography Tips for Broome Staircase to the Moon
Want to capture the perfect photo of the Staircase to the Moon? Since it is a natural occurrence, be prepared to be at the mercy of mother nature.
Amateur photographers often find it difficult to capture the true beauty of this rare sight, so you may just want to snap a few quick photographs and go back to enjoying the moment.
Even professional photographers find it challenging to take pictures of the moon, but anyone can certainly try!
Whether you’re an amateur or a pro, here are some tips for photographing the Staircase to the Moon:
- Study moon photography ahead of time and practice photographing the full moon before your trip
- Use a tripod and remote shutter release to help increase stability and sharpness
- Set your camera to its base ISO (usually around 100) to limit how much light is let in
- Shoot with a small aperture
- Opt for slightly faster-than-average shutter speeds and adjust from there
- Have a long zoom lens on hand to help showcase the moon’s details
- If you find yourself struggling to get the perfect photo, sit back and relax and just enjoy the moment in person
Exploring Broome and Its Surroundings
The Staircase to the Moon is one of the best things to see in Broome, but there are so many other experiences to enjoy!
If exploring and connecting with nature is at the top of the list when you visit Broome, be sure to also check out:
- Malcolm Douglas Crocodile Park
- Gantheaume Point (The Dinosaur Coast)
- Horizontal Falls
- Whale watching charters
- Scenic flights in Broome
- The Broome Bird Observatory
- Purnululu National Park
- The Dampier Peninsula
For more ideas on the best things to do in Broome, check out our list of The Top 20 Reasons to Visit Broome in 2023.
Want More Information on a Visit to Broome?
With its pristine wilderness, endless places to explore, and gorgeous tropical climate, Broome makes an ideal holiday location. If you want to connect with yourself and trade in the hectic pace of normal life for Broome time, we’d love to host you at our award-winning eco beach retreat.
If you have questions about the best things to do in Broome or need help planning your dream Broome getaway, please contact us. Our team goes above and beyond to ensure your holiday — from start to finish — is as relaxing and enjoyable as possible.
We’re here to provide extensive local knowledge to help you plan and book your dream eco beach getaway. Feel free to call our Reservations team during standard business hours at +61 8 9193 8015 or email us at Reservations@ecobeach.com.