The Coogee Maritime Trail features both underwater and land-based activities. The trail is centred around the Omeo, Perth’s premier shore-based shipwreck. The dive and snorkel trail features an underwater reef and artworks, which are the first of their kind in WA. This unique trail offers great opportunities for education and aims to build greater awareness within the community about the significance of our maritime heritage, maritime archaeology and history and our beautiful marine wildlife.
On the 13 December 2019 the trail grew like the life forms it is supporting. Twenty new structures were added to the trail in partnership with Subcon. The trail now has over 55 structures to guide you on your underwater journey. These upgrades are designed to enhance user safety and recreational experiences on the trail.
New features to discover include a replica cannon and new artifical reef structures including Bombara reef modules, reef matts with specialised mussel anchor beds and newly designed low carbon geopolymer reef modules. These ultra low carbon footprint substrates are made from a concrete formed without cement, which means the carbon dioxide produced during manufacturing is a fraction of the traditional modules.
Visit the trail today and see if you can discover all the structures including:
- Reef pyramids
- Reef Matts
- Stella Maris seastar swim through sculpture (Artist: Melanie Maclou)
- Replica cannon
- Mystery Railway wheel and folding stock anchor - uncovered in the Swan River during excavations Elizabeth Quay
- Sea lion sculpture
- Interactive 'selfie' porthole
- Interpretive signage.
From the access stairs you can enjoy the stunning views of Cockburn Sound and the historic Omeo shipwreck.
The Omeo is Perth's premier beach side shipwreck dive, close to shore in the shallow, clear waters of Port Coogee. The Omeo is an historically significant and federally protected iron steamship that was built in 1858 in Newcastle (England) and later converted to a sailing ship. It was used to lay the Bass Strait Telegraph cable, and the Overland Telegraph linking Australia to Britain via Singapore.
This vessel was involved in international trade and participated in inter-colonial passenger networks. It traded for many years between Adelaide, Melbourne and New Zealand, and famously collided with, and wrecked, the Swan Spit pile lighthouse in Port Phillip in 1881, before becoming a coal hulk. The Omeo was driven ashore and wrecked in 1905.
For more information on the Omeo visit the Western Australian Museum - Shipwreck Galleries opens in a new window, the Shipwreck Databases opens in a new window or Maritime Archaeology Association of Western Australia opens in a new window.
Take a look at the state's only shore-based shipwreck which can be accessed with only a pair of goggles!
The dive and snorkel trail features an underwater reef and many interesting artworks centred around our maritime heritage, maritime archaeology, history and beautiful marine wildlife. There is also a land based trail for the land lovers out there!
Video transcript can be viewed below.
Only 25 metres from the shore, the dive and snorkel trail begins at the Omeo and includes an artificial reef, underwater sculptures and educational signage. The trail can be easily accessed from the northern end of Coogee Beach via the beach access path from Perlinte View. The trail begins in shallow water while its westernmost extent reaches a maximum depth of 7 metres. Most of the trail is around 2.5 to 5 metres deep, making it suitable for snorkelers and novice divers. The artificial reef and underwater art sculptures around the shipwreck create a linear dive trail and habitat for aquatic life. Underwater educational plaques give information about the Omeo shipwreck, maritime history and aquatic life in the area.
Underwater art gallery
The underwater art gallery includes a giant sea star which divers can swim through, an old railway wheel, anchor and Dutch inspired replica cannon and a sea lion near the shore. You can experience a large variety a marine life on the trail including a variety of fish, starfish
, cuttlefish, nudibranchs, sea squirts and corals.
The purpose-built reef consists ofover 55 reef modules, ranging in height from 1m to 5m tall. The reef has been designed by marine engineers and scientists to support a diverse range of aquatic flora and fauna. The unique sections create a complex reef that includes lots of cave-like spaces to support fish, crays and molluscs and are great for snorkelling and scuba diving. Larger species will be attracted to the tall reef temple which includes a swim through.
The reef will weigh over 30 tonnes in total, and all reef modules are fabricated from fibre-reinforced concrete. The reef has been installed by Subcon, Australia’s leading artificial reef company.
Frasers Property Australia developed a universally-accessible trail along the pathways at Port Coogee, in collaboration with project partners. This trail features maritime artefacts, including two restored anchors from the Omeo (provided from the WA Museum Collection) as well as a viewing area overlooking the shipwreck. There are signs along the trail, offering information about the Omeo shipwreck, artefacts, maritime history and aquatic life in the area.
The Coogee Maritime Trail begins at the northern end of Coogee Beach, just south of Port Coogee. The dive and snorkel trail starts at the Omeo shipwreck and continues 200m west, following the southern breakwater. The land-based trail runs parallel along the breakwater esplanade, near Socrates Parade in North Coogee.
The trail can be easily accessed from the beach at the northern end of Coogee Beach via the beach access path from Perlinte View, North Coogee. The City has installed stairs for ease of access. We strongly discourage visitors from climbing over the rock breakwater and seawall to access the underwater trail for safety reasons.
Contact the Environmental Services Manager for more information on the Coogee Maritime Trail on 08 9411 3444 or at firstname.lastname@example.org