Busselton has a foreshore that will stop you in your tracks and have you entertained for hours. You’ll be dazzled by the ivory sand and the translucent turquoise ocean lapping at its edges. Then, a 1.8 kilometre-long, heritage-listed jetty will draw your eyes out to sea where, from May to December, tens of thousands of whales pass by on their annual migration. And that’s only the beginning.
The drive to Busselton from Perth takes roughly 2.5 hours. Or, you could fly, with the Busselton Margaret River Airport sitting 6.5 kilometres from the town centre, equipped for everything from A330s to private aircraft.
Busselton sits at the top end of the famous wine region of Margaret River – it’s only 23 minutes’ drive to Dunsborough, or 42 minutes’ drive to Margaret River township, with cellar doors, restaurants and vineyards dotted along the way.
First though, you’ll want to dip your toes in Geographe Bay, a calm cove that’s still and shallow. The depths of the Indian Ocean are so far out, Busselton Jetty was repeatedly extended, becoming the longest timber-piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere. At its end, find an underwater observatory with enormous windows placing you alongside colourful coral, patterned fish and the occasional turtle. You get to descend several floors below the waterline, while staying perfectly dry.
The more than 150 year old jetty faces a grassy, playground-filled foreshore, where kids can get sprinkled with water falling from a whale’s tail, scale ropes up a life-sized shipwreck and clamber over a giant octopus.
It’s also home to Shelter Brewing Co, a new addition to a growing number of local beer brewers. Sip a local pale ale within sight of the kids, and watch for whales blowing and breaching on the horizon.
Busselton is a place that’s on the move with artisanal food, produce and craft destination, Origins Market that opened late 2021. A new performing arts centre and a bustling dining and entertainment precinct are due to arrive in coming years. Visit before the secret is out.