Just an hour’s drive south of Perth, the darling scarp melts into the Indian Ocean. So begins the love affair between western Australia’s land and water, where rivers flow through the dense forest and outback vistas, and pristine beaches curl up beside charming seaside towns.
A stunning coastline, rugged scrub and powder-blue skies cause an endless yearning to escape the daily grind. Thankfully, you won’t need to traverse too far from the city to find one of Western Australia’s most beautiful regions.
Given the waterways of the Peel-Harvey Estuary are twice the size of Sydney Harbour, it’s understandable why many venture no further than Mandurah’s shoreline, dotted with eateries ideally positioned for spotting frolicking dolphins.
Mother Nature continues to delight further inland, where 5000 species of native plants and wildlife, waterfalls, forests, rivers and thousands-of-years-old living fossils thrive.
Thrilling year-round adventures include world-class off-road cycling, 4WDing, bushwalking, kayaking, camping, white-water rafting, surfing, jet-skiing, abseiling and horse-riding.
The land is bountiful in produce, showcased at wineries, markets, cafes and outstanding restaurants throughout the area.
Inland Peel is a hotbed of mountain biking, bush-walking, kayaking, abseiling, white-water rafting, horse-riding and camping activities all year round. You can find a gentler pace aboard the steam train, by exploring the historic towns of Dwellingup and Pinjarra, or just relaxing in your chalet.
The wineries, cafes and country pubs not only serve up local produce, but are also wonderful settings to share adventure tales.
Accommodation options include self-catering apartments, rural cottages, camping, luxury chalets, hotels and houseboats.
Before you go
If scoop crabbing is on the agenda, you must attain a relevant licence in advance. Don’t leave town without… Relaxing along the Mandurah foreshore, where you might spot dolphins playing in the water.