Albany, Destination Guide
Albany is one of the most historically significant towns in Australia. It was the first place European settlers landed in Western Australia, and was the departure point for 30,000 soldiers from Australian and New Zealand, who travelled by ship to the First World War battlefields more than 100 years ago. The National ANZAC Centre and numerous moving memorials tell their important stories. Don’t miss artist Bruce Munro’s stunning Field of Light installation honouring the soldiers. Albany is also home to the Western Australian Museum, and the Albany Historic Whaling Station, the world’s only complete whaling station museum. The Albany harbour foreshore has a full-scale replica of the Brig Amity, the ship that brought convicts to Albany in 1826. You can get board, go below decks and follow thier.
Albany is blessed with dramatic coastline, thanks to its position on a stunning natural harbour on the southernmost tip of Western Australia. The landscape provides Albany with a combination of calm swimming beaches and coastline, and powerful ocean pounding the cliff faces. Our must-do recommendations are The Gap, Natural Bridge and Blowholes in Torndirrup National Park for sightseeing and photos (wear walking shoes and stick to the pathways), and Middleton Beach or Emu Point for long days swimming and picnicking. Enjoy whale watching, humpbacks and southern right whales, from July to October and displays of wildflowers in winter and spring. Beautiful walks and lookouts dotted along the coast include: Two Peoples Bay, Little Beach and Waterfall Beach. For those who like to see natural beauty below the surface, dive in King George Sound – home to the spectacular dive wreck, the former HMAS Perth.
Albany’s heritage and unique location has bred great creativity, and there’s plenty to experience. The Vancouver Arts Centre is worth exploring for visual arts lovers, check out what shows are on at the Albany Entertainment Centre, and on Saturday start your day at the Farmers Market, or Sunday at the Boatshed Markets. Locals tip: try dinner or a cocktail at the Parisian-inspired Liberte, and make sure you have a Wilsons Brewery beer while you’re in town. If spirits are more your style, go for a tour and tasting at the Great Southern Distilling Company. Visitors to the region are spoilt for choice when it comes to wineries too across the Great Southern.