Albany WA – a jewel of the South-west

Albany WA – A jewel of the South-west

There is nothing like a trip to Albany to sharpen the senses and open up your eyes to a  world of magnificent scenery and pristine white beaches.

For the trip, I hired an excellent three-berth Toyota Hiace ‘Hitop’ campervan from Perth Travellers Autobahn, which I found to be comfortable and reliable.

My first stop after leaving Perth was at the halfway point – the little town of Kojonup – about 250 kms south of Perth on the Albany Highway.

Whilst there I grabbed a coffee and took a walk around the town.

A surprising discovery was an old ramshackle building near the main street that was originally a military jail in convict times.

Its roof looked like it needed restoring and the verandas were none too solid, but the Kojonup Military Barracks are still open to the public on certain days, and remain a great tribute to the early pioneers.

Built in 1845, the Barracks were also used as Kojonup’s first school and purchased by the Shire Council in 1963.

Continuing on to Albany, I was struck by the magnificence of the famous Porongurup ranges to the east of the highway.

Even from 50km distance they are impressive, with their outline likened by locals to a reclining pregnant woman.

Arriving in Albany after a five-hour drive I was looking forward to a good night’s sleep, and found the Emu Point Caravan Park to be very comfortable.

After checking in, I went searching for a decent restaurant and stumbled upon the Venice Italian Pizza Bar and Restaurant in York Street, quite close to the Albany Town Hall.

The pizzas here are mouth-watering and highly recommended.

Next morning, I was up bright and early to explore the surrounding area and my first stop was Frenchman’s Bay, about 20km south of the town centre.

Here the beaches are white and unspoilt – with crystal clear water.

Albany’s celebrated Whale World is also here; as is the magnificent Goode Beach and Albany’s world-famous Blowholes.

I spent a pleasant day exploring the area and arrived back at Emu Point tired but satisfied.

The next day was spent touring the Albany Maritime Museum, the acclaimed National Anzac Centre, Princess Royal Fortress, and the many other attractions of the Albany Heritage Park and Mount Clarence.

Just up the hill from Middleton Beach, the ANZAC Centre is well worth a visit, although I thought the admission fee quite pricey.

My trip back to Perth was uneventful and although I spent only two nights in Albany, it was well worth the drive.

For other travellers, a longer stay might be worthwhile, as there are so many things to see and do in Albany.

By Mike Peeters

Albany WA – a jewel of the South-west
The Albany National ANZAC Centre is a drawcard.









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