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Perth - Albany
Great Southern Experience

Great DrivesThe Great Southern regionís scenery varies from sweeping rural plains with wheat, sheep, cattle, fruit, wine and grapes, to a coastline with rugged cliffs and headlands, gently curving bays and pristine beaches. It also offers a range of activities including underground caves, whale watching cruises and canoe tours - just to name a few.

Starting from Perth, head south through the picturesque estuaries of Mandurah, famous for the delicious blue manna (swimmer) crabs that can be found at Peel Inlet and Harvey Estuary in their hundreds of thousands. Continue along the scenic coastal route to the port of Bunbury. Be sure not to miss the beauty of the Koombana Bay dolphins. The Dolphin Discovery Centre has an interaction zone down on the beach where wild dolphins drop in quite regularly.

From here travel through the world renowned Western Australian wine region of Margaret River and be sure to sample the premium wines and culinary delights on offer. At Margaret River you are spoilt for choice. You can shop for superb craftwork in timber or pottery, sample rare cheeses, taste superb premium wines, climb down into a fossil-filled cave, visit a marron (the westís version of the yabby) farm, surf/windsurf or sip a cappuccino at Prevelly Beach.

South west of Margaret River, along the Caves Road, Karri forests meet pristine beaches to create a spectacular coastal drive. Experience the extensive and beautiful limestone cave system along the Cape Leeuwin Naturaliste Ridge. Mammoth Cave features the fossilised remains of prehistoric animals and majestically shaped rock formations.

Discover the unique beauty of Beedelup National Park and falls, climb the Gloucester Tree or spend the day meandering through the many art and craft shops of Pemberton.

Enjoy the local fare of Pemberton with trout, marron and boutique wines. Then continue on to Walpole, home to the famous Tree Top Walk - a suspended track built 38 m above ground that runs for about 600m through the treetops of Nornalup National Park. After experiencing the natural wonders of this region move on to the bustling seaside town of Albany.

Spend the morning exploring Western Australiaís oldest town, Albany. Explore the historic buildings and maritime museums or between July to November take in a whale watching tour. South of Albany is Torndirrup National Park, which has spectacular coastal rock formations. The landscape here is particularly dramatic in spring when beautiful wildflowers cover steep sandy slopes and dunes, massive granite outcrops and sheer cliffs.

On the way to Perth take in a late lunch or wine tasting in the wine-growing region of Mount Barker.

Where to Stay

Time required: 4 - 5 days recommended.

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