Top Ten Australia Off-the-Beaten-Path Adventures

Explore Rottnest Island
By Ron Moon & Viv Moon

Washed by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, Rottnest Island lies off the suburban coast of Perth. It's a playground for Perth folk, who arrive for day and weekend visits aboard an armada of various sea craft from small aluminum runabouts, to luxury yachts, to crammed high-speed (and cheaper low-speed) ferries.

But for all that the natural beauty of the place, with its delightful sandy beaches, small bays, low cliffs, and fringing rocky reefs has remained remarkably unspoiled. Far-sighted management has meant that there has been little development on the shore, while the surrounding waters have been set aside in a mosaic of reserves and protected habitats.

For day trippers coming to this island on one of the ferries, a Rottnest excursion normally starts (once you get past the Quokka Arms, Rotto's only hotel) with a mountain-bike trip around the island—or if you're not that energetic, to the nearest deserted cliff-lined bay, where you can go for a cool dip, a snorkel along part of the established Wreck Trail, or just a laze in the sun.

Those lucky enough to have their own boat can find a bay to enjoy all to themselves, go fishing, take a scuba dive or just enjoy the pleasant ambience of this magical place.

Published: 30 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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