Albany and the South Coast

The “city” of Albany is located a 4 hour drive south of Perth, and is the largest town in the Great Southern Region. Located on the Southern Ocean this is Western Australia’s most southerly town, and because of this, it is usually cold!! But get a beautiful weather window and Albany has so much to offer, with a mix of great history and beautiful natural scenery!

main street

After our day of hiking on the Saturday we decided to explore Albany and its surroundings in the comfort of our car! After a hearty breakfast in town (visit La Botanica for awesome coffee!) and exploring the quiet Sunday morning main street we headed out to the National Anzac Centre, which is Australia’s only museum dedicated solely to the conflict of World War 1. Even though I have grown up in Australia, and learnt all about the Aussies that fought in world war 1 in school, there was still alot I learnt in this museum. For example Albany, a small town back then (even now there is only 38,000 people) had 41,000 Australian and New Zealander men leave from this port in 1914. From all around Australia and NZ men came from far and wide to Albany to leave on a convoy of ships to go Europe. For so many of these poor men Albany was the last time they would see Australian soil. It is a sobering thought and definitely a solemn place of quiet reflection. Nearby there is the Padre White Lookout and the Desert Mounted Corps Memorial where a dawn service is held every year on ANZAC day to remember those that gave so much for our country.

After spending time exploring the centre and the nearby historical bunkers and war memorabilia it was time for a change of pace and head towards Albany’s famous coastal features. The Torndirrup National Park cops the brunt of the brutal Southern Ocean and the fierce Antarctic winds that whip up in the winter time. Due to this there are some amazing coastal cliffs and natural features like land bridges and beaches. Even on a calm day with minimal swell it was cold and the ocean looked foreboding! Sadly with calm weather this meant the blowholes weren’t blowing water up, but they still blew air and it gave me a fright the first time I stood next to the hole! I would love to perhaps go down one day in winter and see the ocean at its furious best (but I hate the cold so there is no chance of that haha). Come at the right time of year (sadly most of winter lol!) and you will see the large whale migration, where whales come close to shore with their babies and frolic in the waters.

From exploring the numerous little beaches and coves we headed back towards Albany for an afternoon coffee and to grab dinner before heading back to our accomodation up at the Porongorups (about half an hour north of Albany). We stopped at the Albany Wind Farm though, which was a great experience! I didn’t realise we would get so close to the turbines, and just how large they were! With all the wind that Albany experiences it makes sense to harness the energy. We walked a small walk circuit, which intersected with the famous Bibbulmun Track! For those that follow my site I love hiking, and often do day hikes on the Bibbulmun’s northern section. The track starts (or ends depending where you walk) in Albany, and goes past the wind farm and all the way up 1000km to Perth. It was exciting for me to see where this section of the trail, as the part I usually walk is in the Perth hills, and not the ocean.

Overall I highly recommend Albany, and can’t believe it took me 40 years to get here in the first place! I will definitely be bringing the family down – I think husband will love the coastline and beaches, and Miss A is always a fan of exploring rock formations. It’s definitely a great spot in this big wide country of ours!

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20 Responses to Albany and the South Coast

  1. How idyllic! I didn’t even know there was an Albany in Australia. Thank you for the virtual tour!

  2. thebeerwanderer says:

    Such a lovely area and it sure looks like winter is indeed the time to visit!

  3. Toonsarah says:

    That coastline looks spectacular! Surely you could brave the cold for a short visit for the chance to see those whales?!

    • Anna says:

      Hahah dont worry Sarah, there is another whale spot more north and in Sept/Oct that we go to which is warmer, closer to home and the whales also sometimes come so close to the beach! We see them every year!

  4. Bama says:

    Perth is often described as the most remote big city on the planet. To think that there are people living in places further away from Perth, like Albany, is so fascinating for me. I like to imagine how it would feel like to live there. Will I miss the big city? Or will I find nature so inspiring and nurturing I would no longer feel the need to live in a big city? I really love your photos of Albany with clear blue skies, Anna!

    • Anna says:

      I know, I was shocked too! Perth seems so far from everything, these people have to drive 4 hours up to Perth just to board a plane! Lol. It really feels like the “end of the world” down there. It’s nice with the nature and all, but I think I’d get bored quick! Thanks for visiting Bama!

  5. I meet Australian friend and recently we discuss about this trip, This is my buck list

  6. yololah says:

    Albany looks stunning and so historic too. I have visited Perth but didn’t know of Albany. Putting this one down on my bucket list after reading your blog. Could the water be any bluer?

    • Anna says:

      Lol yes the water can be bluer! Google “greens pool denmark” and see the pics…. Thats just near albany and the water is amazing!

  7. Obong eno says:

    Great photos ❤️

  8. Beautiful place full of great adventures. Thanks.

  9. Hey Anna, at long last I had a chance to have a nose around your blog. I’ve never been to Australia, so many of your posts will be real eye-openers to me. Albany seems lovely, the National Anzac Centre would be right up our street and a nice addition to the many WWI and WWII sights we seem to have collected across the world. The bunkers looks fascinating and I’m sure many people go just for those views. Great photography from the lookout and all those natural wonders across the coastline, particularly the waves crashing against the rock at the gap.

  10. Lada Prkic says:

    Beautiful place, especially the coastline and beaches. I have an online Australian friend who often writes about this fascinating continent. Great photos
    by my favourite Australian-Croatian travel writer. 🙂

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