Western Australia has so much to offer those looking to connect with nature.
Active adventure and simple pleasures in the great outdoors abound in Western Australia. A holiday to Australia’s largest and sunniest state will be packed full of fun and vitamin D. Think high adrenaline feats, soft-adventure jaunts, delicious food and wine festivals and lazy nights under the milky way. There really is something for everyone.
Whichever kind of WA vacay fun you choose, you can be guaranteed it will be glorious, epic and insta-memorable.
To help plan your 2018 travel wish-list to Western Australia, here are 10 of the best outdoor activities to try.
Skydive over Rottnest Island
If you think Rottnest Island is beautiful from ground level, you should see it from above. Perth’s little holiday jewel is surrounded by 50 shades of aqua, which rushes towards you at speeds of 200kpmh after you exit Skydive Geronimo’s aircraft. The fresh sea air slaps your face as your own brand of adrenaline pumps through your body giving you a natural high during free fall. After the parachute opens, it’s smooth sailing to a gentle touchdown on one of Rottnest’s pristine beaches. This is outdoor adventure at its finest.
Hike Karijini National Park
A trip to WA’s north west will most certainly include a day or two hiking the gullies and trails of Karijini National Park. This is where you’ll find the scenes that may well spring to mind when you think of Western Australia. Red dirt and rock. Secret water holes. Hot as Hell. Located 1400 kilometers north of Perth, the 600K hectare park offers a taste of outback Australia. There are walking trails to suit most ages and levels of outdoorsman. Seek out Fern Pool for a scenic swim amongst waterfalls, Hancock Gorge for fair dinkum adventure (safest with a guide) and Oxer look-out for jaw-dropping visuals.
Snorkel with manta rays in Coral Bay
The Coral Coast is the sea playground of WA. Transparent turquoise waters attract epic marine life and tourists alike for some close encounters of the outdoor adventure kind. The famous Ningaloo Reef is well-known for swimming with whale sharks but did you know you can also swim with manta rays? These gentle giants of the ocean are calm and serene creatures who, unlike their cousin, the stingray, do not have a life-threatening barb. They generally just glide around eating with their floppy, toothless gob looking cool and photogenic.
Truffle hunting in Manjimup
Gourmets the world over know that truffles are culinary gold. These pungent delicacies aren’t just picked, they are hunted. With the help of dogs, or pigs, the black, rough-edged fungus is found under the forest floors of WA’s south west. Each year in June, the hunt, and a three-day celebration of all things truffle, is open to keen-beans at Truffle Kerfuffle, a food and wine festival in the bush of Manjimup. Whether you’re an expert or a newbie, this is the place to hunt, buy, eat and learn everything there is to know about truffles.
Book tickets in advance as some events sell out quickly.
Enjoy a sundowner at Sunset Wine in Perth
Summer. Beach. Wine. Music. Blend them all together to get Sunset Wine, a booze and food festival held at Scarborough. The outdoor event is set-up on the grassed area at Brighton Reserve, perfectly close to the beach. Enjoy wine, craft beer, cider, spirits, food, live entertainment and a killer sunset over the Indian Ocean. An event for all epicure types.
Entry fee: Approx $30 at the door. Includes tasting glass and wine samples.
Sea kayak in Broome
Since Cable Beach is pretty much on everyone’s Broome bucket list, why not try seeing the coastline from the ocean with a kayak tour? Turtle Kayak Adventure offers sea kayak trips from the south end of famous beach. Not only will you get to paddle the Indian Ocean on a sit-on-top double kayak, but you’ll also go to some secluded bays that not many tourists go to. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins, fish, birds and sea turtles.
Camp at Lucky Bay, Esperance
There’s no better way to experience life unplugged than by spending a few days camping. And if you want to go camping, you may as well do it in a spectacularly scenic location. Down the bottom of Western Australia is one of the state’s whitest and most perfect beaches: Lucky Bay. The contrast of white sand and vivid turquoise water will produce an OMG moment the first time you see it. When you see pictures of kangaroo’s sun-baking on the beach, there’s a good chance they were taken at Lucky Bay. There are campsites in Cape Le Grand National Park, which offer toilets, showers and stunning views of the bay. Soak up the sun during the day and reflect on the good life under the stars at night.
See and sip under the stars in Margaret River
Between mid-December and April, there’s something special going on under the stars of Margaret River: big screen movies at Cape Mentelle Winery. The winery’s outdoor cinema screens Hollywood and Australian new and classic movies Tuesday-Sunday. Although many of the films are rated M, there are a few PG movies suitable for family outings. Go all out and rent a bean bag and blanket for chilly evenings. Of course, there’s a wine bar for drinks and food options too. This has all the makings of a romantic date night too.
Sail away on a tall ship in Fremantle
An open-air adventure for the whole family is a voyage on the STS Leeuwin II. Setting sail from Victoria Quay in Fremantle, the exquisite tall ship cruises the waters off the coast of WA during the summer months. As it’s a working ship, passengers are invited to be hands-on. Take the helm, hoist the sails or maybe, mop the deck? If you’re after a heart-starter, try your luck at climbing the mast. If you’d rather sit back and enjoy the ride with a cuppa tea, that’s okay too.
Written by Jennifer Morton
Jennifer Morton is a travel writer, content producer and photographer. The Canadian expat has lived all over Canada, New Zealand and Australia. She’s even spent 6 months working aboard a cruise ship in Europe. When she’s not writing about travel, you may find her lounging on the beach, hanging out with her son, reading a book or zooming in on a beautiful scene. She’s also likely to be boarding an airplane… or jumping out of one.