Eagle Bay is the chosen holiday destination of WA’s rich and famous, and it’s not hard to see why…
Sparkling azure water and dazzling white sand; they’re the hallmarks of some of WA’s favourite holiday destinations and Eagle Bay in the South West is no different. Come summer, this idyllic beachside suburb swells to umpteen times its population of 75 as sun soakers, ocean lovers, and anyone after just a few days sea-change make their way down south.
Though it’s small, there’s an unholy number of things to do on an Eagle Bay getaway. From wine tasting and beach lazing to farm animal petting and whale watching, this holiday town has got it all going.
What to do
There’s a reason Eagle Bay is such a popular holiday destination, and the pristine beaches are just the start. For a relatively small place, there’s an incredibly diverse range of activities in the area to keep you busy. When you’ve reached your quota of lazy days laying on the sand, pick up a SUP or kayak and get some exercise in while exploring the surrounding bays. Bring your own, or pop into Meelup Beach Hire and SUP school and loan one for the day.
Alternatively, you can migrate your chilled-out day to the deck of a yacht and book a charter with Sailing Charters WA. They’ll pick you up from the beach in a tender and take you out to the yacht where you can either spend the afternoon, a sunset, or a full day cruising the waters of Dunsborough and Eagle Bay. Keep your eye out for surfing pods of dolphins and the resident seal population on a mid-sea rocky outcrop. If you’re about during whale watching season, you can even spy cruising and breaching whales on a 2.5hr whale watching cruise with Naturaliste Charters Whale Watching and Eco Tours.
It’s not all ocean-based fun – land-based adventures in the Eagle Bay area also abound. Bushwalkers have plenty of ground to cover on the cape with no less than eight trails winding through Meelup Regional Park. Really keen hikers can attempt the full Cape to Cape track, which starts in Eagle Bay and finishes up 135km away down in Leeuwin. Novices are best to tackle just a portion of the trail and, if you’ve got kids in tow, there’s the gentle and short walk up to the Cape Naturaliste lighthouse.
Where to eat and drink
The first port of call on any Eagle Bay getaway is Eagle Bay Brewing Co. Perched on a hill with views of rolling farmland and Bunker Bay in the distance, this sprawling brewhouse perfectly captures that casual-luxe vibe that the southwest is so well known for. Settle in for a few pints of Kolsch over a pizza lunch, or taste your way through their limited edition brews while you snack on a ploughman’s board.
Across the road, oenophiles will find their nirvana. Wise Winery has been around since 1993 and it’s showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, they’re full steam ahead after the recent opening of their second on-site venue, Meelup Farmhouse. You can call into the winery for a stand-alone tasting, sit down to a full meal with views of the ocean at the Wise Vineyard Restaurant, or head down into the Meelup Brook valley for a more casual dining experience at the farmhouse. The farmhouse is the most family-friendly of the venues, with three alpacas, a coop full of chickens, Lizzy the highland cow, and plenty of lawn space to keep the kids entertained.
Take a short drive back into the Dunsborough town centre for an Asian-inspired dinner at Blue Manna. It sit’s right by the highly-lauded Yarri, another restaurant to have on your hit-list while you’re in town. For something a little more casual, try stopping in for beers and burgers at The Pour House Bar and Kitchen or Clancy’s Fish Pub. If it’s just a coffee and some cake you’re after, there’s The Cure Coffee, Merchant and Maker, or Wild and Woods.
Where to stay
Being a holiday town, Eagle Bay isn’t short on places to stay. If you want to stay right on the bay, there are plenty of private rentals listed on AirBnb, some even come with private transfers in a Porsche Macan. For the ultimate in weekend luxury, gather a few friends or families together and pool your resources to rent a palatial home from Private Properties. Most of them will sleep anywhere between six and ten people.
A 15-minute drive from the bay is Bina Maya Yallingup Escape, a semi-rural property that houses two beautiful, spacious chalet homes. Great for families or larger groups, these eucalyptus-surrounded stays can be rented together or individually, depending on your sleeping requirements. If it’s just you and your other half, the secluded Empire Retreat off Caves Road is the place to be. Also surrounded by eucalyptus trees, the lush bushland on the property provides the perfect amount of privacy between the suites.
For a couples getaway with a view, you can’t beat a few nights at Bunker Bay Resort. Nestled into bushland on its namesake bay, the suites all look out over the manicured gardens and lake, while the main lobby and pool area of the resort look out over the dazzling blues of the Indian Ocean.
Feature image: Matthew Moyes, supplied by Private Properties
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See more WA Travel on SoPerth.com.au.