Margaret River

margaret-river-surfing

Margaret River is located some 270km south of Perth and is the central hub of the renowned South West Wine Region which stretches from Cape Naturaliste to Cape Leeuwin. “Margs” is not only famous for its outstanding wineries, but its surf. This popular surfing destination is world class and each year sees international surfing competitions held here. The Margaret River Pro and Classic attract enormous crowds during March-April and November.

margaret-river-mouth The township is situated 10km inland from the rolling surf on the banks of the Margaret River. The town centre is lined with cafes, restaurants and specialty shops and there’s always activity in the street. Prevelly is the seaside village that sees all the surfing action, particularly at Surfers Point which hosts the annual surfing championships. Other popular surf breaks in the area are the scenic river mouth at Prevelly, to the north are Three Bears, Yallingup and Injidup and to the south are Redgate, Contos, Boranup and Lefthanders at Gracetown. The Margaret River coastline is a surfer’s paradise.

margaret-river-grape-vines

If surfing isn’t your scene then no doubt food, wine and scenery are. There is an abundance of wineries, restaurants and breweries in the region ready and waiting for you and your tastebuds. A good place to start is the Visitor Centre on Bussell Hwy in the centre of town. Comprehensive maps of the region and plenty of information about the attractions are available to take on your journey. There is even a wine showroom with displays and tastings from time to time.

margaret-river-wine-tasting The bulk of the wineries are located on and between Caves Road and Bussell Hwy, between the settlements of Yallingup and Witchcliffe. There are so many cellar doors open daily for tastings it is an adventure in itself deciding which ones to visit. Some are small and charming, others are large and impressive. Some serve lavish meals and others sell gourmet produce. Regardless of where you choose to visit, at the end of the day you would’ve sampled quality south west wines and delicious local produce.

Breweries are another popular attraction in the region, with several offering quality locally brewed beers and some serving lunches and offering live music on weekends. You can stop in for an ale at the Colonial, Bootleg, Bush Shack, Duckstein, Eagle Bay or Cowaramup Brewing Company and sample a tasting pallet or a pint of your favourite brew.

The south west region has a variety of other tasting facilities to tempt the palate. Cheeses, fudges, chocolates and nougats are all specialties in this area and tastings are available at each store.

A unique specialty operation worthy of note is Margaret River Venison on Caves Rd. They sell all sorts of venison products including chorizo, salami and pates as well as local gourmet products such as jams, chutneys, olive oils and dukkahs. There is plenty available here to accompany a good wine.

The scenic side of things in this region is as equally impressive as the surf. Margs boasts beautiful swim beaches, rocky coastal canals, tall timbers in the Karri forests and majestic limestone caves.

margaret-river-gnarabup-beach

Gnarabup Beach is the main swim beach at Prevelly, just 2km south of Surfers Point. The picturesque beach is flanked by limestone headland to the south and the beach sweeps around to the north. Amenities are provided here at this popular beach and dogs are permitted on lead.

margaret-river-smiths-beach

Smiths Beach is another popular swimming location and is usually bustling during the warmer months. A seaside resort and variety of villa accommodation is located here as well as a bar, restaurant, bottle shop and deli. The beach is accessible via Canal Rocks Rd 5km south of Yallingup.

margaret-river-canal-rocks

Canal Rocks lies at the end of Canal Rocks Rd. The rocky headland has been eroded by the forceful waves of the Southern Ocean attacking the joints, fractures and faults. Over time linear canals have resulted amongst the headland forming several groups of rocky islands.

Boranup Karri Forest is south of Margs between Caves Rd and the coast. Driving south towards Hamelin Bay is just beautiful, with these magnificent tall timbers fringing Caves Rd. You can also venture off the main road along Boranup Drive to explore the forest further.

margaret-river-karrimargaret-river-caves

The Margaret River region features over 150 caves along the Leeuwin Naturaliste Ridge, four being open for tours. Accessible via Caves Road are Mammoth Cave, Lake Cave, Giants Cave and Jewel Cave. Tours operate regularly each day and allow you to explore the stalactites, stalagmites, columns, crystals and coral formed by water in these underground drainage systems over many years.

Margaret River and surrounds is one of Western Australia’s top tourist destinations and it’s not hard to see why. The scenic contrast of the gorgeous coastline, lush green vineyards and tall Karri timbers compliments the fine food and wine, pounding surf and relaxing atmosphere. Margaret River offers something for everyone as far as attractions and accommodation. Whether you enjoy the outdoors at a caravan park, the creature comforts of a villa or the luxuries of retreats and resorts, it’s all available in the Margaret River Wine Region.

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