Journey by the Jilas

3 Hours
Broome, Western Australia
Culture & Nature
Year Round
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Journey with your local Yawuru guide Johani, to the jilas. Jila is the Yawuru word for freshwater springs. The influx of this fresh water into Roebuck Bay enriches the mudflats for migratory birds and marine species like dugongs and turtles as well as the resident snubfin dolphins, all of which rely on the health of the bay. An experience that begins with the Bugarrigarra, a Dreaming place and time when everything was created, through to the traditional lives of the region’s first people.


Roebuck Bay and Roebuck Plains Station.

What to expect

Meet at the Broome Visitor Centre before driving 30 minutes to a historical and significant area on Roebuck Plains, just south of Broome. Experience and walk alongside the ancient freshwater springs of Roebuck Plains with your local Yawuru guide.

Venture to an Aboriginal owned and operated working cattle station on the outskirts of Broome. Here we will learn about the importance of the influx of the fresh water that runs into Roebuck Bay. The freshwater enriches the mudflats for migratory birds and marine species such as dugongs and turtles as well as the resident snubfin dolphins, all of which rely on the health of the bay. Enjoy the array of wildlife you will see when walking the tracks. Explore the recent history of Roebuck Plains Station, the Broome pearling industry and learn how it irrevocably changed the lives and homelands of the Yawuru people.

Your guide will share stories passed down from his Elders including how the fertile plains have been a traditional food source for thousands of years.

You may discover the great bower bird's amazing bower (nest). There are jalangadi (goanna), barrgara (bush turkey), mirdimarlu (red kangaroo) and plenty of birds, snakes, fish and other species. Keep your eyes peeled for spotting wildlife.
This tour includes some beach walking, through bush grass and tracks.

“Balancing Yawuru traditional knowledge with Western science gives me a unique perspective in my work as a qualified Indigenous Ranger. I encourage all people to experience our spiritual and physical connection to country and spread understanding of Aboriginal culture.” - Johani Mamid

What is included

This tour is conducted on weekdays. Please enquire for possible weekend dates.

Tour begins at 8:00am and/or 3:00pm and runs for approximately 3 hours.

Maximum 4 people per tour unless you're a tagalong guest which means you'll be joining the Journey by the Jila Tour in the comfort of your own vehicle (4 wheel drive only).

What’s included:

  • Aboriginal Guide
  • Hotel pick up and drop off by arrangement
  • Tagalong in own 4WD option available

What to Expect
A half hour drive to a historical and significant area on Roebuck Plains where we will visit several jila sites before returning to Broome.

Corporate and Private Group Bookings possible by enquiry

Meeting point

Meet at the Broome Visitor Centre, 1 Hammersley Street, Broome or alternatively we can pick you up from your accommodation by request.

What to bring

We’ll be driving out to Roebuck Plains and taking a short walk in the grass under the open sky, so make sure you have some drinking water, hat, some sun protection, in-closed footwear, a camera and a sense of adventure! You may wish to bring some light snacks as we are away from town for up to three hours.


Mabu Buru Tours

Mabu Buru Tours is owned and operated by Johani Mamid, a traditional Yawuru man whose Country is located in and around Broome in the Kimberley region of Western Australia.

Created in 2019, Johani began conducting On-Country cultural experiences. His vision is to help ""build a bridge"" between different cultures, to increase awareness about Aboriginal people and to encourage visitors to experience Country through the eyes of traditional custodians.

Prior to this, Johani was a Yawuru Country Manager Coordinator with Nyamba Buru Yawuru Limited, a not for profit company looking after Country on behalf of the Yawuru Nation. On Country work included flora and fauna surveying, monitoring and research in both land and sea.

Johani is proud to share his knowledge of his Country with visitors, show you the local wildlife and tell stories of the ancient, continuing connection that his people share with this land.

You may spot Johani in Broome as he is also a crocodile wrangler and tour guide at the Malcolm Douglas Crocodile Park where he gets up close and personal with some pretty impressive crocodiles.

Ready for an experience you won't forget?