The vast majority of travellers drive to Margaret River as you typically need a car once you arrive. There are other ways to get here from Perth, including bus, commercial flights to Busselton airport and charter flights (fixed wing and helicopters).
Finding your way around
With a coastline that stretches over 120km from Cape Naturaliste to Cape Leeuwin and inland over rivers, farms, forests, sun-drenched vineyards and tree-lined townships, it takes up to 1.5 hours to get from one end to the other. That’s a three hour round-trip without stops, so it pays to think ahead and plan your days.
Public transport is hopeless, so meandering your way around Margaret River in a car is the best way to spend a lazy day, but be aware that many of the roads (such as the beautiful Caves Road) are continually winding and can be quite dangerous for drivers not used to the country. The thousands of kangaroos often find their way on to the roads, especially at dawn and dusk, so it pays to take it easy.
Hiring a driver or doing a tour early on in your holiday is highly recommended as safe, relaxing and informative, providing you with all you need to make the most of the rest of your self-drive holiday.
When to come
Enjoying a Mediterranean climate, summer (December to February) and much of autumn (March to May) is the perfect time to enjoy the endless coastal activities and the very best of the outdoors. Especially in summer and during the holidays, you will often need to book ahead to secure accommodation. Winter (June to August) and spring (September to November) are cooler but still delightful, with mostly sunny days and some chilly nights, an eternally green landscape and locals that are less busy and more chilled than ever. Basically any time is a good time to visit Margaret River.
The region is internationally renowned for its premium grape-growing, and is peppered with more than 215 wine producers and 120 cellar doors. With great wine comes great food. The region’s seasonal bounty is served in eateries from Busselton to Augusta, from home-grown and artisan delights at weekly farmers markets to fine dining in gold-plate winery restaurants. Beer lovers can go to town at nine boutique breweries, most with gourmet pub grub.
Part of the Southwest’s biodiversity hotspot, the region is ideal for nature lovers and home to many endemic plant species found nowhere else on earth. Whale-watching, birdwatching and wildflowers are just some of Mother Nature’s offerings.
Explore on foot or mountain bike and choose from the diverse 135km coastal Cape-to-Cape Track or the Meelup Reserve Trail, or the walks and rides through the Boranup Forest and along the dual-use Rails to Trails network. Along the coast, there are spectacular sights at every stop. Gorgeous views of giant granite rocks, rugged cliffs, and pretty sandy beaches fringed by peppermint-tree heath abound. You might spot frolicking dolphins or the occasional seal in the water.
The Wadandi Noongar people are the traditional owners of this part of south west Western Australia. They are forest & saltwater people and live in harmony with their environment according to the six traditional seasons. Evidence of their occupation in this area dates back over 50,000 years. The coastal areas such as Margaret River are significant to the local Wadandi people and their connection to land and sea is evidenced through a rich culture of songs, stories, spirituality and Dreaming.
Take a guided cultural tour and learn about the Wadandi people’s fascinating culture and incredible knowledge of their environment – taste native foods, discover bush medicine and meet the animals, plants and Dreaming spirits that have enriched the lives of the Wadandi people since time began.