You can travel from Perth to Margaret River in about 3 hours, and many people do this. However, we like to stop and visit different places along the way. It nicely breaks up the journey. Also, we get to see some of the amazing things that are located on the Perth to Margaret River route.
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1. Penguin Island – 45 Minutes South Of Perth CBD
Just 45 minutes south of the CBD this little island in the middle of Shoalwater Marine Park is absolutely worth a stop. Take the short ferry ride, and visit the Penguin Rescue Center, or take a walk around this rugged little island. Allow 2-3 hours. For more information read our post “A Day Trip To Penguin Island”.
2. Thrombolites In Yalgorup National Park – 1.5 Hours South Of Perth CBD
Also known as the Lake Clifton Thrombolites these strange ‘out of this world’ structures are very curious. They are stunning in the early morning or sunset light! Thrombolites are “living rocks”. Thrombolites are easily seen from a short boardwalk.
Plus for little explorers, the science and history behind it can make a great lesson. The thrombolite-building micro-organisms are miniscule. They are impossible for the eye to see but – they look like the earliest forms of life on earth. Scientists have used thrombolites to understand micro-organisms, and understand the earliest forms of life on earth.
It is not known why the Thrombolites form at Lake Clifton, but it is possibly because the lake is associated with small shoots of fresh groundwater that is high in calcium carbonate.
To get to Lake Clifton, you have to take the Old Coast Road by going through Mandurah (not the new Bypass). Look for the turnoff 25km south of Mandurah.
If you feel like exploring a bit more there is a 5km, 2 hours return easy walk trail, around the edge of Lake Clifton
3. Bunbury – 2 Hours South Of Perth CBD
One of the state’s biggest regional centers, Bunbury, seems to be looked over in people’s rush to get to “Marg’s” (as Margaret River is affectionately known)! This is a mistake in our opinion as Bunbury has a lot to offer.
The Dolphin Center at Koombana Bay is a must stop place on your way from Perth to Margaret River. The summer season from December to March has frequent visits from Dolphins.
The center will be re-opening in December 2018, but if you are visiting before then, you can still do the Dolphin Cruises. Check here for more information on the Dolphin Cruises.
If you love street art, Bunbury is filled with it and we had an enjoyable break in the drive going for a walk in this big, country town.
4. Take A Side Trip To The Picturesque Ferguson Valley
This rural area is filled with farms, cows, and the most amazing collection of Garden gnomes. We enjoyed a few days stay here, but if you don’t have the time, most definitely make a stop at Gnomesville, about 35 minutes drive from Bunbury.
If you are traveling with kids, we would then recommend continuing on the amazing Apple Fun Park playground in Donnybrook, 20 minutes from Gnomesville. The Apple Fun Park is a huge playground, touted as the largest free entry playground in all of Australia! Using your GPS, from here it is only 40 minutes into Busselton, going cross country.
The full list of “Things To Do In The Ferguson Valley With Kids” is being written as we speak.
5. Busselton Jetty – 2.5 Hours South Of Perth CBD
If you are going to stop in Busselton – you MUST see the Busselton Jetty! It is the longest wooden piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere and quite simply a hugely long jetty!
40 minutes south of Bunbury, or 2.5 hours south of Perth, the Busselton Jetty is one of Western Australia’s icons and an enjoyable visit for the whole family. You can choose to walk along the foreshore (there is a great kid’s playground under the Pines), have a picnic, or take the train out to the end of the Jetty! For those who are looking for something very unique, you can even visit the Underwater Observatory at the end of the Busselton jetty!
For more information click here for the Busselton Jetty website.
Should you choose to spend more time in Busselton, we are currently working on a post “Things to do in Busselton” so if you need this info please email us!
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