A taste of Australia’s largest premium wine region and hidden little treasures beyond.
Seekers of premium wines make a beeline from Perth to Margaret River to indulge their foodie passions. Venture a little off the trail and find the mild weather and abundant sunshine also produce some extraordinary flavours in the surrounding regions of Bunbury, Pemberton and Manjimup.
At a glance
- Perth to Bunbury (2 hours)
- Bunbury to Margaret River (1 hour)
- Margaret River to Pemberton (1 hour)
- Pemberton to Perth via Manjimup (3 hours)
Day 1 – Perth to Bunbury
Get the first taste of South West cheese, wine and fresh produce by heading for the harvest town of Harvey. Follow the Kwinana Freeway from Perth to the Forrest Highway and take the Harvey turnoff. Or, enjoy a leisurely country drive from Mundijong on the South Western Highway. From Harvey, it’s just a 30-minute drive to the vibrant port town of Bunbury and its award-winning wine region, the Ferguson Valley.
Take a self-guided tour of its arts, wine and food trail and stop for lunch overlooking the vineyards and tuart forests, or check out Bunbury’s cafes and restaurants beside Koombana Bay, home to more than 100 bottlenose dolphins.
- Gnomesville, don’t miss the opportunity to see thousands of gnomes in the Ferguson Valley.
- Dolphin Discovery Centre in Bunbury, see dolphins at the shore or take the opportunity to extend the drive and have a swim with the dolphins day tour.
Day 2 – Bunbury to Margaret River
Hug the coastline of Geographe Bay along the Bussell Highway, passing the seaside towns of Busselton and Dunsborough before the final stretch to Margaret River along Caves Road.
This this right at the heart of one of Australia’s largest wine regions and most diverse holiday destinations. Choose from over 100 wineries, as well as fine restaurants, boutique breweries, art galleries, fresh produce stores and a huge variety of accommodation options, from luxury retreats and private beach houses to motels and camping grounds.
- Busselton Jetty, visit the longest timber jetty in the southern hemisphere.
- Margaret River, explore the many cellar doors in the region and enjoy nature activities like caving, mountain biking, surfing, walking, etc.
Day 3 – Margaret River to Pemberton
Follow Caves Road south and take the Brockman and Vasse Highway, heading deep into karri tree country to reach the old timer milling town of Pemberton, a town of towering timbers.
Set in the heart of karri tree country, find and climb the world's tallest fire lookout tree – the famous Gloucester Tree, see a forest filled with the colour of spring wildflowers and taste some of Western Australia's top cool-climate wines. They are the perfect accompaniment to a lunch or dinner of fresh local flavours, including Pemberton’s finest delicacy, marron. Stay overnight at a local winery, forest retreat, guesthouse or caravan park.
- A good detour is the Augusta Lighthouse – where the Southern and Indian oceans meet.
- Walk around Big Brook Dam and take in the amazing nature. If not afraid of heights then look to take the challenge of climbing Gloucester Tree.
Day 4 – Pemberton to Perth
After a small drive from Pemberton, arrive at Manjimup which lies in the land of the giants, surrounded by karri trees. They are the tallest species in Western Australia and one of the tallest hardwoods on Earth. That said, it's what lies beneath the ground here that captures the attention and imagination of the world's top chefs and foodies. This is the home of Australia's most successful black truffle industry.
Just a short drive from town, see the towering timbers of the King Jarrah, Four Aces and Diamond Tree Lookout Tower, or the tranquil swimming and picnic spots of Fonty's Pool, the Donnelly River and Glenoran Pool before returning to Perth.
- Do a tour half day tour in Pemberton to see some amazing sand dunes that are located right next the forest.
- Over 80 percent of Manjimup shire is composed of National Park and forestry.
- Have a truffle experience at the Wine and Truffle Co. in Manjimup town.