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Margaret River and Busselton are two of the most popular destinations for families to visit in southern Western Australia. They make the perfect long weekend road trip escape, with plenty to see and do for the whole family. This 4-day Busselton and Margaret River itinerary from Perth will help you plan your own short break to this must-visit region!
If you are looking for a short break from Perth, Margaret River and Busselton is a fantastic choice, whether you are looking to get out of the city for a couple of days or exploring more of Western Australia as part of a longer trip, you can’t go wrong!
From breathtaking beaches and renowned wineries to a world-famous jetty, it can be hard to know what to see when you only have a few days.
This itinerary is how we spent our 4 days visiting Busselton and Margaret River region with kids so you can find inspiration for planning your own perfect Margaret River itinerary.
Margaret River and Busselton are great destinations year-round, however certain times of the year are more popular than others.
If travelling with kids, there’s a chance you might be visiting during the school holidays which are naturally busier, although the winter holidays tend to be quieter than summer in comparison since it is far too cold for the beaches and water activities.
Summer is a great time to visit if you are looking to enjoy the outdoors, but the shoulder seasons in spring and autumn will bring smaller crowds.
Distances From Perth To Margaret River & Busselton
The drive from Perth to Margaret River is approximately 310km and is around a three-hour drive, depending on traffic.
Busselton is located less than half an hour from Margaret River and you can get there in around 2 hours and 45 minutes, depending on how many stops you make.
4 Day Margaret River Itinerary
We did not do a lot of planning in advance for our 4-day Busselton and Margaret River road trip.
We wanted to experience the region but also wanted to have plenty of flexibility, since we were travelling with kids and heading north on a Perth to Kalbarri road trip the day after we got back to Perth.
We also visited at a time when there were serious bushfires in the region, which did impact our ability to visit some of the attractions, however, the impact was minimal.
Being summer school holidays in Western Australia, we opted for staying in Busselton in a holiday home, which was perfect for 6 people (us plus extended family).
It is a short drive from Busselton to Margaret River.
If you want to stay in Margaret River, make sure you book early as there is not a huge amount of accommodation in Margaret River and it does book out during busy seasons.
Alright, here is our itinerary:
Day 1 – Perth, Bunbury & Busselton
On day one, we left Perth in the morning and made our first stop in Bunbury for the kids to stretch their legs and for us to have a look around.
Bunbury is around 1 hour and 50 minutes south of Perth.
The Bunbury Foreshore is a great area to stop with kids, with a massive playground, a cafe and a beautiful beach area,
We visited the Bunbury Dolphin Discovery Centre which has aquariums and exhibits to learn about Australian marine life. There is a touching pool area supervised by volunteers and daily fish feeding talks.
There are also a lot of fun activities for the kids to do and you can easily spend an hour or two with all the activities and exhibits.
If you get to Bunbury early enough, you would have time for a dolphin discovery cruise to see the wild dolphins from the area.
After lunch at the Hello Summer Beach Kiosk, we headed onto Busselton. This is a short 45-minute drive.
We dropped our bags off at our holiday house then headed straight to Busselton Foreshore for a swim at the beach and the kids loved the huge nature playground at the foreshore park.
It was also a chance to catch a proper look at the famous Busselton Jetty – the longest timber-piled jetty in the southern hemisphere at 1,841 metres in length.
For dinner, we grabbed BBQ items and stayed in for dinner. Alternatively, Shelter Brewing Co at Busselton Foreshore is a good option for dinner.
Day 2 – Margaret River Region
We headed into Margaret River mid-morning, with our first step at Happs Winery and Pottery.
This is an incredible winery and a favourite from our Margaret River stay. They have an outdoor tasting area that is self-serve with pump bottles so you can sample as many as you like, and for completely free.
The winery is set on a beautiful private property with sprawling gardens for the kids to explore.
There is playground equipment and an obstacle course as well as sports equipment such as balls and bats in a tub to entertain the kids during your visit.
We loved Happs so much that we had our favourite wines shipped back home to Queensland.
After Happs, we visited Wild Hop Brewing Co for a snack and some drinks, while the kids enjoyed playing on the playground.
There is a beautiful outdoor dining area and they have an impressive menu. Make sure you try the truffle oil popcorn! Yum!
The next stop was Swings & Roundabouts Winery. This is a more premium cellar door with a paid wine tasting and a full restaurant. However, it’s another great option for visiting with kids and it is also dog-friendly.
There is a massive nature playground and a second one was in construction while we were there. A perfect place for the kids to run around and have fun while you picnic on the lawn or dine at the restaurant.
Then it was a short drive to Margaret River Chocolate Factory for a quick visit to sample some chocolate and buy some for later.
Next up was our lunch stop at the Beer Farm. It was a bit of a late lunch but they have a great menu and even have platters for kids with fruit, veggie sticks and popcorn.
The former dairy farm turned brewery has a playground and during the summer, they have an inflatable waterslide down the hill on certain days.
On our way back to Busselton, we drove through Cowaramup – a small town famous for the cow statues everywhere. And we do mean everywhere!
We also had a quick stop at Eagle Bay Brewing Co for some takeaway brews for Simon.
Day 3 – Margaret River Region
We headed back into Margaret River early, starting with Ngilgi Cave on Caves Road, in Yallingup. The cave tour is semi-guided so you are free to explore at your own leisure after the initial guided section.
The kids thought the Tunnel of Doom was the best. It’s essentially a section of the cave that is so low you need to crawl or slide through it. They did the tunnel 7 times. Once was enough for my knees!
Some of the other limestone caves in the area include Jewel Cave, Mammoth Cave, and Lakes Cave.
After Ngilgi, we headed to Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse. There is a guided tour to the top of the lighthouse and a viewing platform nearby with incredible views of the Indian Ocean, as well as a playground and cafe.
There are also several walking tracks around Naturaliste National Park if you’re in the mood for getting active.
Instead, we headed to Bunker Bay followed by Meelup Regional Park where we visited beautiful Meelup Beach and Eagle Bay beaches. This whole area is breathtaking and perfect for a swim if you’re visiting in summer!
It has such clear water! The Indian Ocean is truly breathtaking!
Head into Dunsborough for lunch at the bakery then treat yourselves to a visit to Simmo’s Ice Creamery.
Not only are there 60 delicious flavours of ice cream to enjoy, but there is also a fun park with mini-golf, a playground and rides for the kids.
Back in Busselton, this is a great chance to walk along the longest wooden jetty with Busselton Jetty or catch the train if you’d rather not walk that far.
With small kids, the train is likely a better option. There is also an aquarium on the jetty for a unique experience.
Then head to Rocky Ridge Brewery for dinner. This is a pet-friendly option in case you have a furry friend with you as we did.
Day 4 – Busselton To Perth
We headed back to Perth relatively early on our final day, knowing we had our Kalbarri road trip the following day with a big drive ahead of us.
However, if you aren’t in any rush, this is a great time to fit in any of the other Margaret River attractions you didn’t yet have the chance to visit.
Visit Sugarloaf Rock for wildlife spotting & bird watching
Take in the view at Canal Rocks
Stroll through Margaret River town
A Perth to Margaret River 4 day itinerary that includes Busselton is the perfect way to explore this region when you don’t have a lot of time.
This Perth To Margaret River itinerary is the perfect way to spend a weekend away from Perth, exploring some of what Busselton and Margaret River have to offer. This is a great way to enjoy a little of the world-famous wine region and some of the incredible natural scenery. You can easily adapt this itinerary into a shorter or longer timeframe to suit your stay. We hope it helps you plan your own perfect Margaret River road trip!
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