Exhilarating winter weekenders in the Margaret River Wine Region »

With wine, whales, truffles, caves and more

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Cellar door, Capel Vale, South West wine region of Western Australia

Cellar door, Capel Vale, South West wine region of Western Australia

Happs Winery in Margaret River, image by Frances Andrijich
Jewel Cave, Margaret River, Western Australia
Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, Margaret River, Western Australia


Winter is that time of the year when it's tempting to either hide out at home or migrate somewhere warm. But we disagree – there are plenty of cool things to do in the Margaret River Region in winter, and to prove it, here are eight recommendations for exhilarating weekenders:

  1. Watch whales: Every year in winter 35,000 southern right and humpback pass the coastline of the Margaret River Region. Get up close and personal on a charter boat tour, departing daily from the spectacular new $36 million Augusta Boat Harbour.
  2. Go truffle hunting: Our neighbouring area of Manjimup is home to some of the world's best truffles - so head over for a day trip or jump aboard a guided truffle tour with Go In Style (including truffle hunting with real truffle dogs, and a delicious truffle themed lunch at Watershed Wines.
  3. Go mountain biking: Winter is perfect for mountain biking - crisp cold air, a canopy of forest above you, mud splashing in your face... Drop into your local visitor centre for info on bike trails and where to hire a bike, or do a guided tour with Dirty Detours Mountain Bike Adventures.

  4. Taste red wine: Everybody knows that red wine warms the bones - so appoint a skipper (that means driver in WA lingo) and head out to sample some of the region's best. Tip: cabernet sauvignon is what the Margaret River Region is best known for, but keep an eye out for other interesting varieties including tempranillo, sangiovese and malbec.
  5. Explore a cave: Caving in winter, who would've thought? We kid you not - if it's pouring with rain, a cave is the perfect place to explore and hide out from the weather. Lake, Jewel, Mammoth, Ngilgi and Calgardup Caves are all different, and open to the public every day - take your pick!
  6. Take a hike: The Cape to Cape Track offers 135km of coastal hiking bliss, and although we probably don't recommend doing the whole track in winter, it's certainly a great time of year to do some short day walks - weather permitting. Get in touch with local experts Cape to Cape Explorer Tours to find out which section of the track suits your requirements.
  7. Do CinefestOZ: Get some culture into you and head to CinefestOZ in August - an unforgettable five-day getaway premiering feature films and events in the region’s cinemas, wineries, small bars and galleries. It also boasts the richest film prize in Australia (= really good films!)
  8. Climb a lighthouse: Mainland Australia's tallest lighthouse at Cape Leeuwin, and Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse at the northern end of the region, both offer spectacularly rugged views in winter. Fun fact: Cape Leeuwin was recently named in National Geographic's top three ocean views in the world, where "in winter, you feel the full force of the oceans crashing against the cape."

See links below for plenty more suggestions including a local's favourite places »


  • Margaret River (WA)

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June 18th, 2015
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