Explore Western Australia from beach-blessed Perth. Visit Rottnest Island and Freemantle heading south for Margaret River wineries, Kalgoorlie’s goldfields and pink lake and Albany’s dramatic coastline. Head north for the rugged Pinnacles and Karijini National Park, and Ningaloo and Monkey Mia’s marine treasures. North in the Kimberley, an epic 4WD links Broome’s Cable Beach with Kununurra and El Questro Station.
You’ll love Australia’s westernmost capital city, which sits on the Swan River, framed by Indian Ocean beaches and Swan Valley vineyards. Get a quick overview of Perth alongside snapshots of other Australian cities. Find out more about the places to visit in the city and surrounds. From lush Kings Park and the uncrowded beaches to the charming port of Fremantle and nearby Rottnest Island, Perth has it all. Our three-day itinerary offers ideas of what you can fit in to your Perth holiday.
Cruise the Swan River past parks and skyscrapers to 40 vineyards in the Swan Valley or the Perth Zoo. Visit Rottnest Island, where you can explore history, bike ride to secret beaches and kayak to secluded bays. Feast on seafood and soak up the carnival atmosphere in historic Fremantle. Discover the lookouts, landscaped gardens and Aboriginal heritage of huge Kings Park. Swim, surf, fish, windsurf and sail on clean and uncrowded beaches such as Cottlesloe or Scarborough. Then skip between the sunny boardwalks, beaches and marinas of the Sunset Coast.
This coastal paradise stretches from Cervantes and the moonscape Pinnacles Desert in the south to Exmouth and Ningaloo Reef in the north. Bushwalk past gorges, cliffs, winding river and white beaches in Kalbarri National Park. Four wheel drive in Cape Range National Park, where spectacular gorges, carved by ancient rivers, meet Ningaloo’s coral reefs, clear blue seas and sandy beaches. Swim with the docile whale sharks, the world’s largest fish, at Ningaloo Reef between April and June. In the Shark Bay World Heritage Area you can feed wild bottlenose dolphins at Monkey Mia and get up close to sea lions, manta rays, dugongs and humpback whales.
Tackle adventure on the rich red earth of the Gascoyne Murchison outback. Discover the national parks and snow-white beaches of Esperance and the South Coast. See the rugged outback come alive with the colour of wildflowers in winter and early spring. Learn about the Aboriginal history of Mount Augustus and the Kennedy Range. Escape to the Wheatbelt’s small, friendly towns and geological wonders such as Wave Rock. Head to Kalgoorlie and the goldfields for goldrush history and unique flora and fauna. From the sparkling Southern Ocean to Western Australia’s red outback heart, you won’t forget these diverse and theatrical landscapes.
Ride a camel on Broome’s breathtaking Cable Beach and see dinosaur footprints preserved in rock. Four wheel drive the red-dirt road from Broome along the Dampier Peninsula, where you can stay in an Aboriginal wilderness camp and see the church with a mother-of-pearl altar. Further north in Derby, watch the sun set over the King Sound and fly over the Horizontal Waterfalls on the islands of Buccaneer Archipelago. From Kununurra, you can explore the beehive-shaped domes of the Bungle Bungle Range and boat down the Ord River and vast Lake Argyle. Get up close to a huge treasure trove of ancient Aboriginal rock on the Burrup Peninsula, near Dampier. Further south, don’t miss the spectacular red gorges, waterfalls and emerald swimming holes of Karijini National Park.
Dive the Southern Hemisphere’s largest accessible dive wreck – the HMAS Swan – from Dunsborough. Visit world-class wineries, swim in the crystal-clear waters of Bunker and ride the waves of Surfers Point in the lush Margaret River region. Here you can canoe through sun-speckled woodlands and relax on 75 spellbinding beaches. See fossils in Mammoth Caves, mirrored underwater lakes in Lake Cave and straw stalactites in Jewel Cave. Follow a fairytale drive through towering karri forests to Hamelin Bay, where you can snorkel with stingrays and walk the idyllic sands of Boranup Beach. Visit romantic Augusta, where lighthouse-tipped Cape Leeuwin parts the Indian and Southern Oceans. Swim with dolphins in Mandurah and Bunbury and spot whales from the towns of Augusta, Albany and Dunsborough from June to October.
Western Australia is home to a number of extraordinary ‘pink lakes’. Lake Hillier is a pink-coloured lake on Middle Island, the largest of the islands that make up the Recherche Archipelago off the coast of Esperance.
From above the lake appears a solid bubble gum pink. The lake is about 600 meters long, and is surrounded by a rim of sand and dense woodland of paperbark and eucalyptus trees. A narrow strip of sand dunes covered by vegetation separates it from the blue Southern Ocean.
Explore D’Entrecasteaux National Park, a wilderness of white beaches, shifting sand dunes, coastal cliffs, tall karri forests and freshwater lakes in Australia’s South West Edge. Surf Mandalay Beach, hike the Yeagarup Dunes, go fishing, boating, camping, and watch migrating whales from Cliffy Head and Point D’Entrecasteaux. See unique coastal flora and an array of native animals.
Rare Western Australian nature is on show in Stirling Range National Park, home to the craggy, 65km-long Stirling Range, and an astonishing array of seasonal wildflowers, many of which grow only here. This bushwalking and biodiversity hotspot lies just over an hour’s drive north-east of Albany, and is a destination on the South West, Beaches and Goldfields Drive from Perth.