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Geographe Bay A two hour drive south of Perth lies the sheltered shores of Geographe Bay. Voted one of the top 10 places to visit in the world by Lonely Planet, the region is famed for its breathtaking natural beauty.
microbreweries and artisan food producers offering the freshest local ingredients.
Here you will discover the extraordinary, from the heights of the largest remaining tuart forest in the world at the Ludlow Tuart Forest to the depths of Australia’s greatest artificial reef at the Busselton Jetty. In between, you will find hundreds more equally spectacular spots and just as many ways to enjoy them.
It has often been said that there is no single reason to visit the region, but it is the diversity of things to do that make it a place like no other. Families will relish the opportunity to let the kids run wild at fun parks, mazes and in towering forests.
Home to the vibrant seaside towns of Busselton, Dunsborough and Yallingup, 30kms of pristine white sandy beaches fringe the renowned Margaret River wine region to create the perfect holiday playground. You might be surprised to find out that the Margaret River wine region produces just three percent of Australia’s grapes, but more than 20 per cent of the country’s premium wines. Dotted in between the 120 cellar doors you will find equally impressive
Many of the venues have restaurants and cafés on site where you can sit back and enjoy seasonal delights while taking in the vineyards, bushland and ocean vistas. Join a behind the scenes tour to meet the maker and share in the passion of this wine and food hotspot.
Adventure lovers can challenge themselves from above and below, skydiving over the blue waters of Geographe Bay or delving into underground crystal caves. Slow down the pace by soaking up the region’s rich creative talent, or learn about our fascinating history and heritage.
For more information on the Geographe Bay region, please visit the Busselton Visitor Centre along the Busselton Foreshore - beach end of Queen Street, or the Dunsborough Visitor Centre at the Dunsborough Park Shopping Centre. Alternatively you can call 9752 5800 or visit www.geographebay.com.
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See and Do
BUSSELTON HERITAGE PARK AND TRAIL
The Heritage Park and Trail starts at the corner of Peel Terrace and Causeway Road, Busselton, and features a range of sculptures that aim to link the past and present. The Heritage Trail also includes the Aboriginal Interpretive Gardens, Ballarat Steam Engine, St Mary’s Anglican Church and Pioneer Cemetery. A free map outlining a suggested walk trail and history of the landmarks is available from the Busselton and Dunsborough Visitor Centres.
The Wonnerup Settlement, situated 10kms north of Busselton, is an important example of early farming first settled by the Layman family in 1834. The landmark Wonnerup Homestead was built in 1859 and the house, later converted to a dairy, was built in 1837. Also featured on the property is a kitchen, stables, blacksmiths, teacher house and school. These buildings have been meticulously restored. On display are many original items and furniture. Open 10am-4pm Thursday to Monday. Closed month of July. Entry fee applies.
BUSSELTON HISTORIC MUSEUM Located at the Old Butter Factory, the Busselton Historic Museum showcases many interesting displays of old photographs, antique furniture, clothing, farm machinery, and butter and cheese making equipment. There is also a fully furnished old group settlement home and school on site. Open daily from 10am-4pm (closed on Tuesdays). Entry fee applies.
ARTGEO CULTURAL COMPLEX The Old Courthouse complex at the jetty end of Queen Street was built in 1854. Comprising a courtroom, jail cells, a stable, a post office, sergeant’s quarters and bond store, the Courthouse was Busselton’s first seat of justice. This historic building has been restored and is now home to art classes, workshops and the ArtGeo Gallery featuring regular exhibitions by local and touring artists. Open daily, 10am-4pm.
Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse
ST MARY’S ANGLICAN CHURCH Built of limestone and jarrah with a sheoak shingle roof, St Mary’s Anglican Church is the oldest stone church in WA. Building commenced in 1844 and the church was consecrated in 1848. The church is located opposite the Busselton Visitor Centre.
NEWTOWN HOUSE Located 10km south of Busselton on the corner of Bussell and Vasse Highway, this early colonial farmhouse and dairy has been beautifully restored and is surrounded by pretty gardens. Newtown House also boasts a restaurant.
BALLARAT ENGINE The First steam locomotive in WA, which ran between Yoganup and Wonnerup, was used from 1871–1886 hauling timber more than 20km for the main purpose of constructing the Busselton Jetty. The engine is on display in Victoria Park, opposite the Busselton Visitor Centre.
CAPE NATURALISTE LIGHTHOUSE This working lighthouse marks the start of the Cape to Cape Track and provides breathtaking panoramic views across the Indian Ocean and the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park. Although fully automated since 1996, you will take a step back in time as you hear tales of ships wrecks off the formidable coastline, the hardships of life as a lighthouse keeper, and stories of resident ghosts Harry and Mary will be sure to send a tingle down your spine! You can discover more of Cape Naturaliste’s rugged natural beauty on a Guided Nature Trail Tour. Guided tours depart every half hour daily 9.30am-4.30pm.
SCUBA DIVING & SNORKELLING The Capes region is ideal for scuba diving and snorkelling. For calm spots ideal for snorkelers, head to: • The Busselton Jetty • Eagle Bay • Meelup and Castle Rock A number of commercial operators offer dive tours to the Swan Dive Wreck located near Dunsborough and other key diving locations in the Capes region. The former HMAS Swan provides spectacular artificial reefs and is a Mecca for scuba divers.
FISHING Here are a few favourite fishing spots and the respective catch for the area: • The Busselton Jetty – fish, squid or crabs • The region’s beaches – herring and whiting • The Dunsborough Rocks – a lot of different fish including the salmon run between March and May each year • Deep waters – head out on a charter for dhufish and snapper For up to date information regarding bag limits and seasonal variations, contact the Department of Fisheries on 9752 2152.
SURFING Learn to surf at the popular reef breaks in the Geographe Bay region. For more information, contact the Dunsborough or Busselton Visitor Centre.
Humpback Whale breaching off Dunsborough Coast
Wildflowers are at their best between September and November. The best viewing places include:
• The Cape to Cape Track – stretching 140kms from Cape Naturaliste to Cape Leeuwin. The first 2kms to Sugarloaf Rock have been fully sealed for an easy stroll. Detailed maps are available for purchase from Busselton or Dunsborough Visitor Centre.
• The Cape to Cape Track • Meelup Regional Park • Ambergate Reserve • Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse
SWIMMING With more than 30kms of beach, you are spoilt for choice for swimming spots. The best spots are: • Busselton Beachfront • Dunsborough Beachfront and Old Dunsborough Swimming Enclosure • Meelup Beach • Bunker Bay, Eagle Bay • “The Lagoon” at Yallingup Beach • Smiths Beach. Although the beaches are beautiful, there are some dangers associated with the open ocean. Every beach is different and it is advisable to find out about the day’s conditions before heading to the beach. For further information, fact sheets (available in 34 languages) and a free BeachSafe app available from iTunes, please visit beachsafe.org.au.
• Cape to Cave Nature Trail – this is a fully guided walk from Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse to Ngilgi Cave. • R ails to Trails Track – this 18km trail follows the railway network built during the timber boom and runs from Cowaramup to Margaret River. • S horter walks – includes tracks around Ngilgi Cave, Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse, Ambergate Reserve and Meelup Trail (Meelup Regional Park).
NGILGI CAVE Explore the ancient wonders of Ngilgi Cave located in the Margaret River wine region just off Caves Road, a short distance north of Yallingup. Beneath the limestone ridge that forms Cape Naturaliste lies Ngilgi Cave. Discovered in 1899, Ngilgi Cave - formerly known as Yallingup Cave - is one of Geographe Bay’s most renowned tourist attractions. The fascinating association with a rich Aboriginal legend describing the battle between a good spirit (Ngilgi) and an evil spirit (Wolgine) gives Ngilgi Cave its name. Explore the cave and experience stunning stalactite, stalagmite, helicitite and shawl formations. Visit an interpretive area detailing Ngilgi Cave’s rich and interesting history.
PERTH BUSSELTON DUNSBOROUGH YALLINGUP COWARAMUP MARGARET RIVER AUGUSTA
APPROXIMATE DRIVING DISTANCES (km)
Driving Distances 218 243 252 253 257 309 218
25 34 35 46
243 25 252 34
253 35 35 32 257 47 50 43 11
309 91 89 92 54 43
Note: Times are a guide only using main roads and may be longer during peak holiday times or when experiencing extreme weather conditions. Road Safety: You are permitted to drive on a current out of state or overseas licence for a period of one year. If you hold an out of state or overseas driverâ€™s licence it must be carried with you when you are driving and produced on demand to a police officer if requested. Vehicles travel on the left-hand side of the road and the wearing of seatbelts is compulsory for all passengers. It is illegal to talk on your mobile phone while driving. The Office of Road Safety provides more information about driving laws and road safety. You can view its website at ors.wa.gov.au.
Food & Wine From relaxed cafés and family restaurants to bars, alfresco and fine dining, there is a perfect dining experience for all tastes and budgets in the Capes region. The Margaret River wine region is a premium boutique wine region responsible for just three per cent of Australia’s wine production yet supplying no less than 20 per cent of the premium wine market. Visitors will find vineyards dotting the picturesque hillsides throughout the region. Each has its own style and ambience. In all, there are more than 200 vineyards and 80 wineries - a remarkable number considering that wine was first produced in the region just 30 years ago. Character and quality can be found in fruit-intense chardonnays, rich semillons, robust cabernets, soft merlots and other varietal wines and blends. Highly skilled chefs have, like the winemakers, been attracted to the region by the prospect of working with high-quality produce. Invariably they are stimulated to produce dishes with flair and imagination. Local restaurants, wineries and breweries are listed on www.geographebay.com or call Busselton and Dunsborough Visitor Centres on 9752 5800.
Southern Right Whale
Whales & Dolphins Busselton is perfectly located for the annual whale watching season between September and December, when southern right, humpback, minke and blue whales visit Geographe Bay. Seeing them basking or at play in the bay is an unforgettable experience when viewed from tour boats, or from vantage points such as Cape Naturaliste as they round the corner in the calm waters of Geographe Bay. Be awed by their sheer size and magnificent presence, aÂ memory you are sure to treasure. Bottlenose dolphins are also regular inhabitants of Geographe Bay. Watch them play in their beautiful natural habitat and come to appreciate their intelligence and sense of joyfulness. Be sure to observe stand-off regulations if approaching whales or dolphins in private vessels. For more information on whales, please visit www.geographebay.com/whales.
Port Geographe Marina
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Meelup Beach Road, near Dunsborough
C A LE N DA R of
• Southbound Concert
• Capes Long Lunch
• Art in the Park
• Festival Of Busselton
• Petticoat Lane
• Leeuwin Australia Day Concert • Busselton Beach Festival • Australia Day Breakfasts
Leeuwin Estate Busselton
Busselton & Dunsborough
FEBRUARY • South West Craft Beer Festival
• Busselton Jetty Swim
• Geographe Bay Race Week • Half Marathon Fun Run & Walk • Leeuwin Concert
Geographe Bay Busselton Leeuwin Estate
• City to Surf
SEPTEMBER • Whales In Busselton, Geographe Bay Until December • Wildflowers in Bloom
• Cape to Cape Mountain Bike Ride
• Anaconda Adventure Race • Busselton Show
• Fringe Festival
APRIL • Margaret River Pro
MAY • Jazz by the Bay
• Busselton Foreshore Polo
• Busselton Annual Wildflower Exhibition
• Cinefest Oz French/Australian Film Festival Busselton
• Sculpture by the Bay
• Nannup Flower and Garden Festival
• Busselton Beach Volleyball
Augusta Busselton Showgrounds
• Capes Art Market
• Margaret River Gourmet Escape
• Tour de Margaret River
• Malibu Longboard Championships
DECEMBER • The WA Iron Man Triathlon
• Carols By Candlelight
JUNE • Whales in Augusta till August
Augusta For more information on events, please visit www.geographebay.com/whatson.
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ESSENTIAL services BUSSELTON POLICE STATION
DUNSBOROUGH POLICE STATION
HOSPITAL Busselton Hospital
MEDICAL CLINICS Duchess Medical Practice, Busselton
Dunsborough Medical Centre, Dunsborough
Cape Naturaliste Medical Centre Dunsborough
DENTAL CLINICS Busselton Dental Clinic, Busselton
Geographe Bay Dental, Busselton
Dunsborough Dental Centre
CHEMISTS Terry White Chemists – Prince Street, Busselton Dunsborough Pharmacy – 16/55 Dunn Bay Road
TRANSPORT Dunsborough Taxis Busselton Taxis
9756 8688 131 008
BANKS & ATMS Most major banks are located along Queen Street in Busselton, and along Dunn Bay Road.in Dunsborough WESTERN AUSTRALIA WEATHER AND WARNINGS For seven day town or district forecasts, please visit www.bom.gov.au/wa. CHURCH TIMES St. George’s Dunsborough, Naturaliste Terrace – Sun 8am Our Lady of the Southern Cross, Naturaliste Terrace, Dunsborough – Sun 9am (May-Oct) & 8am (Nov-Apr) Our Lady of the Bay, College Avenue, West Busselton – Sun 9am & 6pm Busselton Uniting Church, 47 Kent Street, Busselton – Sun 10am
QUARANTINE IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA
BUSSELTON FORESHORE MARKETS When: First, third & fifth Sunday of each month Where: Signal Park, Busselton, corner of Queen Street & Marine Terrace DUNSBOROUGH CENTRAL MARKETS When: Second and fourth Saturday of the month Where: Lions Park, Dunsborough MARGARET RIVER FARMERS MARKETS When: Most Saturdays Where: Cnr Tunbridge & Farrelly Streets, Margaret River ROTARY MARKETS When: Second and fourth Sunday of each month Where: Signal Park, Busselton, corner of Queen Street Marine Terrace &
Western Australia is free of many pests, weeds and diseases found elsewhere in Australia. Restrictions apply to any plants or parts of plants, including fruit and seed, brought into Western Australia.
TOWN SQUARE MARKETS When: Select Sundays Where: Lions Shed, Burton Road, Margaret River
Please help protect the natural vegetation, wildlife and agricultural industries by not bringing fresh fruit and vegetables, plants, flowers, seeds, nuts, honey, used fruit and produce containers, soil and hay into the state.
VASSE MARKETS When: First, third & fifth Saturday of the month Where: Vasse Community Hall, Kaloorup Road, Vasse For the latest information on the region’s markets, please visit www.geographebay.com/markets.
Please contact the Western Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service on 9334 1800 or www.agric.wa.gov.au/quarantine.
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Compiled with the assistance of Geographe Bay Tourism Association Images courtesy of Geographe Bay Tourism Association, Tammy Chapman, Tash Press and Tourism Western Australia. Front cover image: Busselton Jetty. The information contained in this publication is provided as a guide only. Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, John Batman Group disclaims any liability or responsibility for the accuracy of the information contained herein. Advertising material appearing in this publication is supplied by the operator or service provider and John Batman Group is not responsible for the accuracy of advertising content.