Where to go in Western Australia
Western Australia covers one-third of the Australian continent so seeing it all is something very few can manage. If you are on a lap of Australia you might come close but even then it would take the best part of six months to really appreciate.
Where are the must-see sights to visit in WA?
- Perth – the state Capital, the Port of Freemantle and Rottnest Island
- The Coral Coast – UNESCO listed Ningaloo Reef, The Pinnacles and Monkey Mia
- The Outback – Wave Rock, Aboriginal Culture, Kalgoorlie
- The North West – Kimberley, Broome and the Bungle Bungles
- The South West – Margaret River Wineries, Great surfing and Valley of the Giants Forests
So let’s take a look at the highlights of each region – the places we think you might like.
Perth and Fremantle
With over 3000 hours of sunshine a year, there is hardly a bad time to visit Perth. The city is small by all standards, but it’s got plenty to offer visitors.
Top 5 Things to do in Perth
- Visit Fremantle – The port town of Perth and a great place to hang out
- Swim at Scarborough Beach – about 10 mins from town
- Take a day trip to the Swan Valley – make your way around the food and wine trails to explore
- Explore the CBD and inner suburbs for some really great street art
- Take the ferry to Rottnest Island – stay overnight if you have time
Ningaloo Reef and the Coral Coast
The only place in the world you can swim with the whale sharks.
If you are a diver who likes to get away from the crowds to the less well-known spots, then you might just love Ningaloo Reef. The diving here is said to be every bit as good as the Great Barrier Reef. The Coral Coast is also home to World Heritage-listed, Shark Bay Marine Park.
Top 5 Things to do on the Coral Coast
You can dive straight off the beach on parts of the Coral Coast with is reason enough to visit but there are many others in this magical part of the country.
Don’t miss these highlights:
- Kalbarri National Park – take a peek through Nature’s Window and see Z Bend Lookout
- Monkey Mia – feed the resident Bottlenose dolphins
- The Pinnacles – view the “Rock Stars Of The Desert”
- Hutt Lagoon – photograph the stunning Pink Lake
- Lesueur National Park – especially beautiful when wildflowers are blooming
Ningaloo Reef is a 2-day drive from Perth or a 1.5-hour flight. Many travellers don’t realise you can’t just pop up to Ningaloo Reef on your short trip to Perth.
Oh, and did we mention the beaches are crystal clear with beautiful white sand. Highly recommend you visit if you get the opportunity.
The Kimberly and Pilbara
The landscape of the film Australia, by Baz Lurhman
The landscapes of the Kimberley and the Pilbara are every bit as dramatic as the film Australia. With the intense reds of the dirt and cliffs accompanied with brilliant blue skies, this place is quite simply breathtaking.
The region is vast. It covers the top half of the state, almost the size of California but with a population a little greater than Monaco, one of the lowest population densities in the world. It’s an outback holiday with one of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
Top 5 Things to do in the Kimberly
Highlights of the Kimberly include:
- Broome – ride a camel at sunset and try to time your visit for the famous Staircase to the moon events
- Purnululu National Park – home of the Bungle Bungle ranges
- Talbot Bay – don’t miss the horizontal waterfalls – the perfect spot for a scenic flight
- Karijini National Park – explore the remote Hamersley Ranges and swim in the hidden gorges
- Kimberley River – a luxury cruising destination for small boats that rivals the best experiences in the world
Local tip: If you have the budget for it, El Questro Homestead should be on your list of places to stay while you are in this part of the world. It’s a fantastic honeymoon location.
South Western Australia
Wine, surf and giant trees!
The South West starts just a couple of hours from Perth and provides everything you could want from a holiday, great food and wine, stunning beaches and beautiful forests.
We stayed three nights in Margaret River on our last trip before driving on to explore the rest of the coast down to Albany, spending ten days in the area, a perfect amount of time.
A week or ten days is the ideal amount of time to explore the South West, but if time is short a few days based in Margaret River will give you a good taste.
Top 5 Things to do the South west of WA
Our favourite spots include:
- Margaret River – visit a few of the cellar doors for some tastings
- Hamelin Bay – meet a manta ray or two
- William Bay National Park – see the magical Greens Pools & Elephant Rocks, they are etched in our memories
- Denmark – stop into the Valley of the Giants, this ancient forest gives you a new perspective.
- Albany – visit the National Anzac Centre for an interesting and interactive view of Australia’s war history
- Esperance – Thistle Cove is especially lovely but any beach in Esperance will do!
With 24 National Parks and 1000km of coast, you will easily find your own patch of paradise in WA’s South West.