Climb a historic lighthouse for stunning views of the Indian Ocean and hike a long-distance coastal track when visiting this pretty headland.

Cape Naturaliste is the northernmost part of Margaret River, an area of wild coastal scenery that encompasses part of a national park. Go bush walking, look for migrating whales and other wildlife, see unusual rock formations and tour a lighthouse that is more than 100 years old.

One of Cape Naturaliste's showpieces is the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park, which stretches all the way to Cape Leeuwin, approximately 120 kilometres (74.5 miles) away. Within its boundaries are sheltered and exposed bays and beaches, jagged cliffs and limestone caves, some of which can be explored. Marvel at the strange limestone formations in Mammoth Cave and embark on a torchlight tour of Ngilgi Cave.

Make the most of the great walking opportunities above ground at Cape Naturaliste. Hike part or all of the Cape to Cape Track, a long-distance trail that extends for 135 kilometres (84 miles) along the spine of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste Ridge.

Along the route are popular surfing and bathing beaches, the Boranup Karri Forest, fascinating geological features and sweeping ocean views. The track starts at the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse, which has been a recognisable part of the headland since 1903. Before setting out on your walk, take a short guided tour of the 19-metre (62-feet) tower.

If you don't fancy a long hike, take the 3.5-kilometre (2.2-mile) Cape Naturaliste to Sugarloaf walk. The path is suitable for wheelchair users and part of it is covered by a timber boardwalk. This trek will take you to Sugarloaf Rock, an enormous granite rock formation jutting out of the Indian Ocean.

During your hikes, you are bound to see plenty of wildlife. From September to December, migrating whales can be seen passing through Geographe Bay. Among the species you may glimpse are southern right, minke and humpback whales.

To get to the region, fly into Perth Airport and then drive south for about 3 hours. In addition to hire cars, you can also get here by bus, coach and airport shuttle services.

Cape Naturaliste is an exciting place for a holiday for its wildlife, scenery and coastal hikes.

Accommodation in Naturaliste

Those planning on staying the night in Naturaliste are recommended to make reservations for a hotel, as currently there aren't many Expedia-listed Naturaliste accommodation options available.

Some of the options that are worth a look in Naturaliste are the Windmills Break and Empire Spa Retreat.

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