Recommended spots in West Australia?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Recommended spots in West Australia?

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1. Posted by HaadRinGuide (Respected Member 550 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

I'm travelling to Perth and staying in Western Australia/South West Australia for three months this winter, and wanted to know good recommendations for quiet places to visit with interesting things to see or nice walking trails. I'm not looking for massive multi-day walks - just an hour or two hour walk - so ideally small towns or villages with hostels close to national parks.

2. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1526 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Around the Margaret River region you have beaches, caves, historic towns, there are some good short walks:

Hope this helps

3. Posted by balhannahrise (Respected Member 51 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

If you go to Kalbarri, then a must is to do the walks there in the National Park.

I haven't finished this blog yet, but I have written about Kalbarri.

Down around Pemberton where the tall trees grow and around the coast near Albany were all great.

There are so many nice walks, especially along the coastlines, like stopping at all the little towns along the way to Cape Naturaliste. I just went to info centres and picked up the walking trail brochures.
If your there in wildflower season, then there are many walks that take you through the wildflowers.

4. Posted by HaadRinGuide (Respected Member 550 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Thanks for the advice.

I forgot to clarify, I will be travelling by public transport, so won't have a car. Are the walks easy to get to? Are they close to Margaret River/Kalbarri/Pemberton/Albany? Could I just set off by foot from the centre of town?

5. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1526 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

To be honest you might struggle there. Most walks in Australia aren't near public transport:(. Try the Western Australian NP website. Maybe you can find something there:

There are also tours that do guided walks and they will be able to transport you back and forth, that might be worth considering.

6. Posted by balhannahrise (Respected Member 51 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

This has the sights to see near Albany. Although close by, it would be too far to walk. I suggest hiring a car for a day to do this.

Public transport usually isn't available or not that good once you get away from the major cities and towns. Sorry I can't help with that.

7. Posted by aussirose (Respected Member 259 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Hi. What a shame that you are not hiring a car because I was going to refer you to my 2013 road trip south blog. The wildflowers are magnificent at this time of year. I also have another wildflower road trip up north. As the others said public transport is not that good here.

8. Posted by Steve79 (Respected Member 340 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

I really wished I'd spent more time in Western Australia when I was in Oz, Margaret River was lovely and although I never made it, I've heard Denmark is really nice.

9. Posted by HaadRinGuide (Respected Member 550 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Are there any car hire companies you would recommend? The last time I hired a car in the UK they ripped me off my keeping my deposit for a tiny scratch which was already there, so I'm a little untrustworthy of car hire companies, but I suppose with digital cameras it's easier to verify the state of the car nowadays.

What are the roads like in WA? I haven't driven for about ten years, so I'm not that confident a driver, but I'm guessing the roads are really quiet in WA?

10. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1526 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

While I can't recommend any car hire companies I know my travel insurance usually covers payment for rental car damage. I don't know if the UK has anything similar but it could be worth a look. In saying that I have rented many cars around the world and have yet to be ripped off by one (touch wood) so I would like to think those horror stories are in the minority:) I always take pictures of my car at pick up and make sure they are time stamped but also try and inspect the car with one of the company employees. Usually they have a form they should fill out documenting the damage on the car at pick up time. You might also want to request an automatic car, they may cost more but you'll find it easier to drive.

You say you haven't driven in 10yrs so do you actually have a valid license? You will need one to drive in Australia. Once out of Perth the roads are not so busy, though on the weekend it might be a bit more crowded. Australia doesn't have many multi lane highways if that helps. Most roads are two lanes one in each direction. Roads tend to be in ok condition, they may be more worn out than what you are use to in Europe but nothing that makes it difficult to drive. Around national parks you find a number of unsealed roads. Unless stated otherwise you can take a 2wd car on them, if you are nervous about driving you may want to avoid them entirely, if you are willing to drive on these roads, just take your time and don't speed on them. Gravel lacks the friction of sealed roads, so if you need to stop suddenly you will skid a long way and can easily lose control. Since you are not use to driving avoid any night driving. Country roads in Australia tend to be unlit and it is also the time you are most likely to encounter animals trying to cross the road, leading to collisions.

I hope this information helps you, overall I think it is a good decision to rent a car, as stated by the other posters public transport is not that great and this area really is best visited in a private vehicle. Another thing to consider is either getting a GPS or cacheing some Google maps. In the country areas you can experience internet blackspots so having some form of offline navigation can be useful.