Broome to celebrate pearling history

The high spirited and colourful Sammy the Dragon will kick off the 2011 Shinju Matsuri Festival on September 1 -- a nine day annual event that puts Broome firmly on the Western Australia festivity fun list.

The Shinju Matsuri Festival recalls Broome’s history as a pearling centre. Japanese and Chinese pearl divers began arriving in the area in the early 1870's -- and in no time Broome became the pearling capital of the world.

The event includes art exhibitions, Dragon Boat Racing, float parades and concerts. New for this year is a dim sum long table lunch in Chinatown’s main street and a pearl meat cook off.

The Pearl Luggers display in Broome recaptures and brings to life the Broome's fascinating and exciting pearling history. Visitors are entertained by a pearl diver as they are shown the evolution of the town’s remarkable pearling past.

There are various tours and cruises available in Broome, including those on a hovercraft and on a pearling lugger.