In Busselton’s calm turquoise bay you can take a 1.8-kilometre stroll or train ride over the Indian Ocean on the longest timber-piled jetty in the southern hemisphere. And below the waves, Australia’s best artificial reef can be viewed by stepping into the Underwater Observatory or getting suited up for a diving tour.
Twice voted Western Australia’s Top Tourism Town, and just a short hop from the Margaret River wine region, Busselton gives you plenty of reasons to take the 2-hour-and-40-minute drive or 50-minute flight south from Perth.
Its iconic, heritage-listed jetty was originally built in 1865, and a ticket to ride with the Busselton Jetty Experience takes you all the way to the end to get a glimpse of the colourful fish and tropical corals that have made it their home, thanks to the warm waters of the Leeuwin current.
Along the north-facing shoreline, the tranquil waters, white sands, lush lawns and shady pine trees of the main swimming beach offer the perfect setting for a family day beside the sea. Here, and along a 30-kilometre coastline of immaculate beaches, you can try your hand at fishing, water skiing, snorkelling, scuba diving, windsurfing, kayaking or sailing in the calm waters of Geographe Bay.
A short walk from the main beach brings you to Busselton’s main street, where you can browse boutique fashion, designer homewares, surf gear and antiques. Take a detour down Fig Tree Lane and you’ll find yourself in a quaint little retail enclave of fashion, beauty and refreshments.
For a spot of culture, step inside the Busselton Museum, Old Courthouse or the beautiful St Mary’s Church and be transported back to the 1800s, when Busselton was established as one of Western Australia’s first settlements. Housed in the old prison and courtroom, the modern ArtGeo Gallery and Courthouse Arts Complex now celebrates freedom of expression, displaying the works of South West and Western Australian artists.
All tastes and budgets are satisfied with a huge array of tours, restaurants and accommodation. And for the best views in the bay, be sure to check out Busselton’s string of beachfront resorts.