Duration: 5 days
Distance: 981km / 610miles
Day 1: Perth to Bridgetown - 260km / 162miles
Day 2: Bridgetown to Pemberton - 67km / 42miles
Day 3: Pemberton to Walpole / Denmark - 185km / 115miles
Day 4: Denmark to Albany - 53km / 33miles
Day 5: Albany to Perth - 409km / 258miles
The southern corner of Western Australia is the perfect location for a romantic escape or nature-based holiday.
Blessed with crisp starry nights, lush forests and dramatic coastlines, inhabited by gourmet food specialists and world-class wineries - there's little chance that you'll leave the area feeling other than relaxed, refreshed and fully satiated.
Day 1: Perth to Bridgetown
From Perth, take the South Western Highway towards Bridgetown, stopping in Pinjarra along the way.
One of the oldest towns in Western Australia, with its carefully restored historic homes and public buildings, Pinjarra is an ideal spot for a morning tea break. The colonial style architecture along the main street is sure to encourage the photographer in you.
In just two and a half hours you'll be in Bridgetown, so drive at a leisurely pace to enjoy the South West region's rolling hills and valleys.
Here's another gem to be savoured and explored at a leisurely pace. Tranquil views and a picturesque wooded backdrop add to the town's rustic charm. Once the apple-growing centre of Western Australia, Bridgetown is set among jarrah trees on the banks of the longest continually flowing river in the state - the Blackwood River.
Enjoy a glass or two of local wine with dinner before retiring for the night at a motel, Bed and Breakfast or guesthouse.
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Day 2: Bridgetown to Pemberton
It's an easy drive along towering jarrah and karri tree lined roads to Pemberton - in the heart of tall timber country.
Be sure to visit the Gloucester Tree lookout - an awe-inspiring 60 metres up. Certainly not for the fainthearted, but those who accept the challenge of climbing this giant karri tree will be rewarded by an amazing view of the forest canopy.
Follow a walk trail to explore the enchanting karri forests or simply relax at a lakeside cabin, which is fantastic for romantic couples wanting to escape.
Visit a cottage-style restaurant for a sumptuous gourmet meal to replenish the energy stores before heading back outdoors to indulge in a spot of stargazing.
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Day 3: Pemberton to Walpole / Denmark
Walpole is just an hour and a half down the road, so take it easy this morning with a lazy sleep-in followed by a leisurely breakfast. Take the drive slowly too - keeping an eye out for grazing kangaroos.
After a stroll through Walpole's town centre, continue driving to Hilltop Road and deeper into the forest. Look out for the Giant Tingle Tree and circular pools hiding alongside the nature walks before making the short journey east to Denmark for the night.
On the way to Denmark, don't miss the Valley of the Giants Tree Top Walk in the Walpole-Nornalup National Park - a walk trail suspended 38 metres above the forest floor. Surrounded by 20,000 hectares of towering trees, this is an exciting yet peaceful way to experience the magical southern forests, and provides an appreciation of the size of these towering giants.
While there, take time to explore the other marked trails through the hollow trunks of the amazing Tingle Trees. Rangers are on hand to explain the local flora and the evolution of the forests.
The William Bay National Park and Greens Pool is near Denmark. The transparent water of the pool is stunning on a clear day and the perfect backdrop for a picnic lunch. Capture a few photos of the massive rock formations too, known as 'Elephant Rocks', resting in the water.
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Day 4: Denmark to Albany
Denmark is a picturesque town where charming bridges and buildings nestle unobtrusively among leafy surroundings.
Satisfy the hunger pangs with a quick visit to a local restaurant with great views, or picnic on the riverbank to soak up the town's tranquil atmosphere.
Energetic travellers may like to add a horseback tour of Denmark to the itinerary before embarking on the half-hour trip to the port city of Albany in time for lunch.
Albany was Western Australia's original capital and is now most famous for its whaling heritage. Visit the old whaling station - now transformed into a fascinating museum - for a brief but interesting lesson on the town's history.
Whales are often spotted between June to October breaching and playing only a few hundred metres from the station where they were once harvested. Venture a little further to the purpose-built lookout platforms along the coast to continue your whale-watching experience.
The purposed-sinking of HMAS Perth as a dive wreck in 2001 provides a unique opportunity for marine enthusiasts exploring Albany's waters. The wreck is easily accessed by divers and can also be viewed from the water's surface by snorkellers.
Dine out before spending the night at a boutique hotel or friendly Bed & Breakfast.
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Day 5: Albany to Perth
Visit some of the Great Southern Coastal region's delectable wineries and original art galleries this morning, followed by a lunchtime feast. Then start your 4 hour 45 minute journey back to Perth feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
There's plenty to see and do on your way back too, so save some time to visit such highlights as the Porongurup wineries and the Kodja Place Interpretive Centre which features fascinating displays of the area's Aboriginal and pioneering heritage.
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