Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The 20 best things to do in Australia’s South-West

The South-West of Australia packs a serious punch for tourists. Discover an ancient cave, sip award-winning wine, take a leisurely swim at a secluded beach, and get up close and personal with kangaroos – all in a day’s work.

It was a hard task but we’ve narrowed down the 20 best things to do in the region.

Wine tasting and wine tours

Margaret River and the South-West is synonymous with wine and produces 20 per cent of Australia’s premium wine. Join an organised tour or pick a couple of places you might like to explore at your own pace.

Explore ancient caves

Wander through places where time has stood still. There are more than 150 caves dating back 350,000 years, with Jewel, Lake, Ngilgi, Giants and Mammoth caves being the most popular.

Get in the water with stingrays at Hamelin Bay

Hamelin Bay is a gorgeous beach typical of WA with white sand and clear water. What makes it special are the friendly stingrays that frequent the area, and swim right up to the shore.

Climb giant trees

Test your bravery. Climb 51m Diamond Tree, 61m Gloucester Tree, or 75m Dave Evans Bicentennial Tree. This adventure is not for the faint-hearted but worth it for the spectacular views.

Indulge your inner foodie

You can’t come to the South-West without sampling the incredible fresh produce. The region is renowned for chocolate, cheese, award-winning ice cream, heavenly bread, gourmet olive oils, and truffles.


Dive the HMAS Swan shipwreck

Fancy diving a huge ‘ghost ship’? Just 2.4km out from the Dunsborough coast you will find 113m retired Australian Navy destroyer HMAS Swan, resting at a depth of 30m. Suitable for all diving levels.


Go kangaroo spotting

Kangaroos like to be in wide, open spaces, which makes it relatively easy to spot them in the wild. Keep an eye out while walking or driving, join a kangaroo safari or visit animal farms which usually have joeys you can cuddle.


Soak in the views at Bunker Bay

What’s not to love about Bunker Bay? A prime whale watching location, luxury day spas nearby, and a picture-perfect beach with smooth white sand and crystal-clear water. Wineries and restaurants are a stone’s throw away.

Castle Rock Bay, by Photo Elements Margaret River

Try surfing or stand-up paddleboarding Yallingup and Margaret River are well-known for world-class surfing but there are dozens of surf breaks for all levels, including complete beginners. For something gentler, try stand-up paddleboarding at Gnarabup or Meelup.

Snorkel at The Aquarium

Discover the secret snorkelling and swimming spot known as The Aquarium. Near Canal Rocks in Yallingup, this little nook has beautiful aquamarine water and colourful fish.

Walk the Cape to Cape Track

125km long, the Cape to Cape Track from Cape Naturaliste near Dunsborough to Cape Leeuwin near Augusta is spectacular. Enjoy sweeping ocean views, cliffs, secluded beaches, woodlands and karri forests.

Go whale watching

The South-West is one of Australia’s top whale watching locations, from June until December. To see the giant of the seas – the blue whale – November and December are ideal. For the best views, jump aboard a whale watching charter.

Swim at Meelup Beach

Picturesque Meelup Beach is a favourite for visitors and residents. Play a spot of volleyball, have a picnic beneath the trees, or take a swim or paddleboard in the calm waters. If you have a boat, you can anchor offshore.

Visit the national parks

You’re spoilt for choice. Visit:

Discover Busselton Jetty

This is the Southern Hemisphere’s longest timber-piled jetty. View coral and marine life from the observatory, walk on the ocean floor with a SeaTREK or join the crowd and catch your own seafood dinner.

Canoe on Lake Beedelup or the Blackwood River

If you prefer a tranquil lake with deep blue water and grand karri trees lining the shore, head to Lake Beedelup in ‘Karri Valley’. For fun river rafting, dodging rocks and submerged trees, try Blackwood River. Both have hire facilities.

Canoeing on the Margaret River.

Canoeing on the Margaret River. Image courtesy of Sean Blocksidge.

Watch the sunset at Canal Rocks

Near Yallingup is Canal Rocks, a beautiful geological formation of ancient rocks that jut out into the ocean. Walk the wooden boardwalk over the water for great views and photo opportunities.

Pamper yourself

Stressed out and in need of some serious relaxation? Visit one of the region’s luxury day spas. From massages and facials through to three-day spiritual and wellness retreats.

Photograph the wildflowers

This is a biodiversity hotspot with thousands of wildflower species. Try Windy Harbour at D’Entrecasteaux, Cape Leeuwin, or Busselton’s Ambergate Reserve and Captain Baudin Reserve. The season is from August to November.

Sip craft beers at a local brewery

While the region is better known for wine, there are excellent breweries operating here. Throw in pizza ovens, fireplaces and live music; it’s a great experience even if you’re not a beer drinker.

We have luxury properties in all these locations, so browse our list to find the perfect holiday home for your next stay in the region.

You might also like to read:

Horse-riding in the South West

Meet Yallingup Cheese expert: Alana Langworthy

Explore the Farmer’s Markets

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