Image credit: Western Australia Tourism
Aleney de Winter looks at why this seaside town should
be at the top of your West Australian bucket list.
Nestled along the beautiful blue of
Geographe Bay, just a three-hour
drive south of Perth, the city of
Busselton has been a popular
holiday spot with Western
Australians for more than 100 years. But now
the secret is out and the rest of the country is
flocking to explore its beautiful beaches and
wildflower-filled bushland surrounds.
Over and under water
The Heritage-listed Busselton Jetty, extending
almost two kilometres out into Geographe Bay,
is undoubtedly Busseltonís biggest drawcard.
Counted as one of the top 10 dive jetties in the
world, the picturesque pier provides shelter to
colourful ancient corals as well as an
abundance of fish, seals and even the
A popular wheelchair-accessible train carries
passengers the length of the jetty, passing
local fishermen hauling in their catch to reach a
spectacular Underwater Observatory. Here
visitors descend eight metres to the ocean
floor via a spiral staircase, entering a giant
reverse fishbowl that offers views into an
exciting and colourful world of tropical and
sub-tropical corals. Over 300 marine species
call this area home and here visitors can see
them without getting wet.
From December 2015 the jetty will become
even more fabulous for families with the launch
of a series of new tours and activities including
guided walking and photography tours, fishing
clinics and night tours of the observatory.
Busselton is one of Australiaís best wild
dolphin destinations and the Dolphin
Discovery Centre is the spot to learn about
the dolphins in the local area. Explore the
Discovery Pool, aquariums, 360į Digital
Dolphinarium and the Interaction Zone where
wild dolphins come to interact with visitors. If
youíd rather see the dolphins at play around
the bay, head out on a Dolphin Eco Cruise, or
get up close and personal with these delightful
creatures in their own environment on a Swim
on the Wild Side Tour.
Itís only natural
Take the trek to nearby Cape Naturaliste
Lighthouse where you will be rewarded
with incredible panoramic views over the
Indian Ocean, Cape Naturaliste, Leeuwin-
Naturaliste National Park and sparkling
Geographe Bay. Itís worth taking a tour to
learn the functions and history of the
working lighthouse, and to shiver at tales
of its ghosts and shipwrecks.
Be sure to leave time to tackle some of the
walking trails that meander around the
stunning bays and dazzling beaches of the
Cape for unbeatable views over the ocean and
of the local wildflowers, something this part of
Western Australia is famous for.
Famous for fun
Busselton has its fair share of family attractions
and thereís fun to be found for every age. At
Busselton Archery and Family Fun Park,
located on the edge of town, kids five and over
can try their hand at archery. All equipment and
tuition is provided, with a shaded nine-target
range. After a little training, the full-range
skirmish takes around 40 minutes to complete.
Afterwards the kids can go wild in the Bungee
Run and Adventure Playground.
Image credit: Western Australia Tourism
Having used so much energy, youíll want to
find a comfortable place to settle in for the
night. There is ample accommodation available
in Busselton with a good variety of familyfriendly
resorts, guesthouses, holiday parks
and camping. Mandalay Holiday Resort &
Tourist Park is a short drive from town and
features all of the family favourites. From a
heated swimming pool to a giant jumping
pillow, thereís plenty to keep the kids occupied,
while Mum and Dad will love the barbeque and
Head to Fig Tree Lane for boutique shopping.
Fish and Chips on Busselton foreshore
The remarkable river
If you can tear yourself away from all of
Busseltonís family-friendly fun, it is also an
ideal base to tour the Margaret River region
as its world-class wineries are all in proximity
to the pretty seaside town.
Get lost at Amazeín Margaret River Maze,
Cafe and Gardens as you wind your way
through 2000 hedges that stand over two
metres tall. Thereís also an 18-hole mini-golf
course where you can test your swing, before
taking a rest in the gardens featuring species
native to Western Australia.
For those who prefer motors over mazes, the best way to experience the Margaret River
region is via electric quad bike with
EcoAdventures Margaret River, itís seriously
fun and the environment will thank you!
Image credit: Busselton Jetty