Towns in Australia

Exploring Australia, town by town

Caiguna WA


Postcode: 6443

Caiguna is a small roadhouse community located on the Eyre Highway in Western Australia. It is the second stop east of Norseman on the long journey east across the Nullarbor Plain. Between Balladonia and Caiguna is a 146.6 kilometre (91.1 mi) stretch of the highway which is one of the longest straight stretches of road in the world.

The name is an Aboriginal word possibly meaning “spear track”. In 1841, Edward John Eyre’s party, consisting of Eyre, a man named John Baxter and three Aboriginals including one named Wylie, travelled across the Nullarbor, leaving Fowler’s Bay in South Australia. On 29 April, two of the Aboriginals killed John Baxter and disappeared into the desert, taking most of the party’s supplies. Due to the terrain, Baxter could not be buried, so his remains were wrapped in a blanket and left behind, and Eyre and Wylie pressed on for another month, after which they were rescued by a French vessel off Thistle Cove near modern-day Esperance, Western Australia. A memorial to Baxter is located 10 km south of the roadhouse. The townsite was established in 1962 to assist traffic crossing the Nullarbor for the Commonwealth Games in Perth.

Caiguna today consists of not much more than the John Eyre Motel that provides roadhouse facilities including a basic caravan park. It is one of only three Nullarbor roadhouses to be open 24 hours. A landing strip is also located nearby.

Caiguna is also the town at which the unofficial Central Western Time (CWT) starts.