Visit the sun-drenched city of Perth, tour the delightful Margaret River wine region and explore the many deserted beaches of Australia's largest state.
Western Australia is also known as WA. Its capital, Perth, is set on the banks of the Swan River, wedged between the rolling hills of the Swan Valley and the state’s endless sandy beaches. This is one of the most remote cities in the world, yet it's surprisingly cosmopolitan.
Swim or surf at popular Cottesloe Beach or just laze on the golden sand. Head inland to Subiaco, with its historic architecture and trendy cafés. Browse the central Hay Street Mall before exploring Northbridge with its lively bars and clubs.
Just to the south is Fremantle, a rejuvenated port city. “Freo” has art galleries, maritime museums, beaches and bohemian cafés. Cruise to Rottnest Island, where rare quokkas roam and the marine life is plentiful.
A once sleepy surf town, Margaret River is the heart of the state’s culinary south, thanks to its abundant vineyards and farms.
Drive south through forests of towering karri trees to historic Albany, a good base for whale watching. In the far southeast corner of the state, idyllic Esperance has white beaches and turquoise bays.
Also explore the more rugged coastal national parks and desert plains north of Perth. Take a detour to sleepy Monkey Mia in Shark Bay to meet friendly dolphins.
Farther north, the vibrant Ningaloo Reef stretches from Coral Bay to Exmouth. Snorkel or dive with turtles, manta rays and reef fish. In winter, spot whale sharks or humpback whales from a boat.
Along a remote, red dusty road, cool off in the shady, lush gorges of Karijini National Park.
In the vast Kimberley region is the once thriving pearling port of Broome, where one of the highlights is a ride on a camel’s back along Cable Beach at sunset. In the state’s far north, take a scenic flight or drive from Kununurra to the marvelous sandstone domes of the Bungle Bungles.
East of Perth, in the gold mining town of Kalgoorlie, see the remnants of the historic gold rush, then be awed by the sheer size of today’s Super Pit.
WA is vast and remote; a vacation here will be a rewarding journey for its spectacularly contrasting beauty alone.