Home' Traveller : Scoop Traveller WA 021 Contents 186 Scoop Traveller January - June 2012
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lbany is a port city, only
418km south of Perth
or an easy five-hour
drive along the Albany
Highway. The town is an ideal base
for exploring the many natural and
heritage attractions of the Great
Southern region. You will need at
least three days to take it all in.
Locals suggest a visit from
January to June when temperatures
are mild, with days in the mid-20s
and very few that head into the
30s. Start your visit in town with
breakfast made from local produce
at a cafe on busy York Street, before
strolling towards Princess Royal
Harbour for some magnificent
views. If it’s a Saturday, don’t miss
the market on Collie Street, named
the best in the country.
If you’re a history buff,
clamber aboard the replica of
the Brig Amity, the ship that
brought Albany’s first settlers in
1826. Learn more at the Regency
Museum and the convict gaol.
Start your exploration further
afield with a journey up Mount
Clarence. You’ll need a vehicle, but
the trip up is well worth it, with
360-degree views of the town,
Middleton Beach, King George
Sound and Princess Royal Harbour.
On day two, travel beyond the
harbour and down Frenchman Bay
Road to explore a packed tourist
route in Torndirrup National Park.
Just off the road you’ll see signs
for the Gap, Natural Bridge and
Blowholes, where you can witness
the power of the Southern Ocean.
At the end of the road, discover
the multi-layered Whale World
museum, where 3D movies and
tours of an old whale chaser are
part of the experience.
On day three, head east to the
rivers and mountains. The King and
Kalgan Rrivers are a short drive
from Albany and ideal for anglers
and paddlers. For tree lovers and
walkers, take Chester Pass Road
about 40km to the karri-topped
Porongurup Range, or the majestic
Stirling Range. And don’t forget
to sample the view from Albany
windfarm, 12km from town.
“The snorkelling at Betty’s, Little and
Norman Beaches is spectacular and
one of Albany’s best-kept secrets”
The Bibbulmun Track out of
Albany is spectacular, traversing
landscapes from tall forests to
the rugged southern coastline.
Be aware of major construction
works happening close to the
Albany windfarm, just west of
the Hidden Valley Camp Site. The
windfarm is being expanded and
the section of track which passes
through the site has been diverted
to the existing 4WD track running
parallel to the coast. For the most
up-to-date information, contact
DEC in Albany.
Located just 15 minutes from
the town jetty is the submerged
wreck of a 133m missile destroyer,
the HMAS Perth. Scuttled in
King George Sound in 2001, the
site is now home to an artificial
dive reef. To dive on the site you
need an access permit from one
of the dive stores in town or the
visitor’s centre. Another spot to
try in the Sound is Herald Reef,
situated between the mainland
and Michelmas Island. Several boat
and dive charters operate out of
Princess Royal Harbour.
Canoeing and kayaking
Locals suggest a paddle around
the famed Cheynes II wreck,
located off the coast near Geake
Point in Big Grove. Launch from
the beach and once you reach the
island you’re in for a treat because
its home to a nesting ground of
many species of sea birds. Other
favourites include the 140km
Kalgan River and 27km King
River that both spill out onto
The areas along the Albany coast
are world-class when it comes
to salmon. Number one on the
list has to be Salmon Holes in
the Torndirrup National Park,
off Frenchman Bay Road. Other
spots to try include the Princess
Royal Harbour in town (for squid),
Sandpatch, 10km south of Albany
(for herring and silver bream) and
the King and Kalgan rivers, 11km
and 16km east of Albany (for black
bream and whiting).
Princess Royal Harbour
(Photography Tourism WA).
Fishing off Albany’s beaches.
Surfing at Sandpatch
(Photography Dave Coad).
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