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Rottnest Island, nestled just off Perth’s coastline, is Western Australia’s little slice of paradise. It is only a short half hour ferry ride from Fremantle port, so reaching this ethereal destination is a breeze.
This family friendly holiday spot is bursting with breathtaking landscapes, including 63 beaches and 20 stunning bays, superb snorkelling, an abundance of wildlife, 50 kilometres of roads to explore by bicycle or by foot as well as plenty of memorable activities and adventure. Use an Australian campervan hire to get around comfortably.
Fondly known as WA’s premier island destination, you are spoiled for choice the moment you step off the ferry. From day trips to extended vacations, Rottnest Island is a magical getaway for locals and tourists alike— young, old, and especially great for family adventures with a kaleidoscope of fun and relaxation guaranteed for everyone!
6 REASONS TO VISIT ROTTNEST ISLAND WHEN IN PERTH
Fun family activities on Rottnest Island primarily involve the ocean and plenty of excitement in the sun including swimming, snorkelling, scuba diving, fishing, and boating.
1. Pristine Beaches & Stunning Snorkelling Spots
Relax and enjoy white sandy beaches, palm trees, and shimmering blue waters— picture-perfect snorkelling or swimming for the whole family.
The pristine reefs at Parker Point offer a lively underwater landscape with Little Salmon Bay and Salmon Point Lagoon being particularly great for young or inexperienced snorkelers. Kitson Point is ideal for tropical species and corals, and is less crowded than the more well-known spots. Be sure to also check out Mary Cove, Nancy Cove, and Salmon Bay’s western end.
Water activities in Rottnest Island are perfect for the warmer weather, although many can be enjoyed all year round!
2. Adrenalin Junkies
Why not have a skydiving experience with Rottnest Island air adventures — the ultimate in adrenaline pumping adventure that offers an awesome view of Rottnest Island as you spectacularly fly across her landscape. This is fun unlike anything you have ever experienced before! Children 12 years and up are allowed to tandem skydive on Rottnest Island as long as they have a parent’s permission.
This is a really unique way to enjoy the Rottnest Island views and landscape from a great height and more affordable than a helicopter flight, if you are up for it!
3. Slow Down & Relax – Fresh Air & Exercise
Rottnest Island is the ideal destination where you can completely slow down and relax as well as get lots of fresh air and exercise.
There are no cars on the island. Bikes are the main mode of transportation enabling you access to explore all of the gorgeous beaches and landscapes. Be warned as the island is made of hilly sand-dunes, making some treks a challenge for novice or young cyclists.
For those of you who prefer an easier mode of transport, a bus circuits the island at least every hour. It is also easy to get around on foot; there are stunning beaches within an easy ten minute-walk of most accommodations.
Another fun way to see more of the island without as much strenuous activity is on a segway. This is one of the many fun activities in Rottnest Island that allows you to see lots in a short time. There are several different Rottnest Island segway tours available.
4. Tours Galore
If you want something other than segway or skydiving adventures in Rottnest Island, they have you covered! There are a lot of different tours available for Rottnest Island. These can be an easy way to see more of what the island has to offer, when you do not know your way around. Here are some great options for Rottnest Island tours:
* Natural & Cultural History Tour: Learn about the island’s natural and cultural history on a guided bus tour.
* Wildlife Tours: Hop on a boat cruise for some wildlife adventures.
* Snorkelling and/or Dive Tours: Check out one of the fabulous snorkelling/scuba diving tours available including various colourful reefs, lagoons, shipwrecks and offshore dive sites. * A quokka tour will soon have the entire family spotting some quokkas— a marsupial that kind of looks like a rat but is as big as a common cat.
5. Rottnest Island Boating or Camping Adventure
Nothing is quite as exciting as planning your own itinerary as you explore the beautiful bays, offshore fishing, and dive sites and stay overnight in sheltered waters away from the main settlements. This is definitely an experience you won’t forget in a hurry.
If you have less time to spare, you can enjoy a lunch time seafood cruise or simply make the most of your ferry from Perth and surrounds.
Or if boating is not so much your style, you can also camp on Rottnest Island. This can be a great alternative to finding hotel accommodation as there are limited options available, plus camping is a great way to really enjoy the environment around you by getting back to nature!
6. Rottnest Island Winter Wonderland
Rottnest Island is also a wonderful winter getaway with lots of advantages that the cooler months offer. The winter sunshine is common with plenty of crisp, clear blue sky days thanks to Perth’s dry climate. You won’t be short on options on what to do on Rottnest Island in winter. Here are some the great perks for visiting during the Rottnest Island winter months:
- No crowds
- Great discount deals, especially during the low season
- Whales visit between April and October
- Ride out over the salt lakes to the Oliver Hill Guns and tunnels from WW2
- Take in the spectacular views via a tour from the top of the Wadjemup Hill Lighthouse
- Mini-golf, playgrounds & cricket in the middle of the road (no cars)
- And of course, nothing beats sharing some family togetherness time while sipping hot chocolate in a cosy cabin warmed by a log fireplace!
If you’re wondering when is the best time to visit Rottnest Island, there is no right or wrong time. There are plenty of vacation adventures in Rottnest Island no matter what time of year and it is a destination the whole family will love.
Planning Your Rottnest Island Visit
How to Get to Rottnest Island
You can reach Rottnest Island by ferry from Perth or Fremantle. There are many different day tours available that will include your transport to and from the island. Or you can make your own way via boat or ferry instead.
Where to Stay on Rottnest Island
There are only a few different hotels located on Rottnest Island if you wish to stay longer than a day. For this reason we recommend you book as early as possible to avoid missing out. This is another great reason for visiting in the off season though.
Alternatively, camping is a budget friendly alternative that the family will love.
Rest assured; whether you take a day trip or opt to spend a few days or even longer on Rottnest Island— it is simply the perfect family adventure getaway! Everyone will love it! And while you are in Western Australia, make sure you have the chance to visit Broome too!
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