- Countryside Coastlines, Cabernets and culture
- Country Life Wine tasting and wave-riding
If Margaret River didn’t exist, someone with an active imagination would have made it up. Just three hours south of Perth, the region mingles natural beauty with phenomenal dining and over 120 wineries that produce a quarter of Australia’s best bottles.
Your options are endless: the coastline proffers clear waters and world-class surfing, cellar doors are always open, wildflowers are abloom, and an arty heritage spills out of its many galleries. Stir into the mix a host of hearty exploits from sea-air-kissed trail walks to soul-uplifting yoga, and it’s easy to see why the allure of this Western Australian getaway is increasingly contagious.
Do go/Don’t go
The Mediterranean climate makes the Margaret River an ideal destination year-round. In summer, temperatures rarely creep above 32°C and in winter average around 18°C during the day, although it can be a touch chilly at night. This is a popular holiday destination, which gets very busy at Easter, Christmas and during major events, so book well ahead.
- Planes Perth Airport (www.perthairport.net.au) is the gateway to Margaret River, servicing international, domestic and regional airlines including Qantas, Jetstar, Tiger, Virgin Blue and Skywest. Air Australia International (08 9332 5011) runs charter flights to the region.
- Trains TransWA (www.transwa.wa.gov.au) runs daily trains to Bunbury from Perth, which connects with the Westrail bus service that takes passengers south through Margaret River.
- Automobiles Margaret River is about a three hour drive (272 kilometres) south from Perth along either the Coast Road or the South Western Highway, neither of which is a particularly inspiring route. However, a car is invaluable when exploring the region and touring the vineyards. Rentals are available at Perth Airport.
- Taxis You’re more likely to catch a ride on the Bommy – Margaret River’s fast, peeling right-hand surf break – than flag a cab down on the street. Better to book one in advance through the Margaret River Taxi & Tour Service (08 9757 3444).