I may not have firm travel plans for this year yet but the beginning of 2014 was off to a great start when I spent the New Year period in the south west of Western Australia with four generations of my family.
The Margaret River region of Western Australia is a perfect spot for a family holiday with lots of attractions for all ages.
We had three teenagers and a ten year old with us so the worry was that we wouldn’t be able to keep them occupied, but that worry turned out to be unnecessary as all of them got into the spirit of the holiday and enjoyed all that we could fit into the few days that we were there.
This is the first of a few posts that I hope to do about the attractions of the area, there’s far too much to put into one post and far to many photos to choose from.
So – Let’s start at the beach.
They wanted to go to the beach early – so I had them there early. By 7.30am on the first day we were down at the mouth of the Margaret River with their body boards and lots of enthusiasm. While the rest of the adults wasted the best part of the day in bed I was provided with a perfect photo opportunity. The sun shone, the ocean sparkled and the kids had a ball.
The surf here isn’t for the littlies though so watch them carefully if they’re with you.
The following day we were back there with the rest of the family in tow. All children, whether they are four or forty, love rock pools and the lure of the rocks and the pools created here is impossible to resist. The weather this day wasn’t made for surfing but we spent a couple of hours dabbling in the pools and climbing the rocks. I even got in some exercise when I climbed to the top of a steep sand dune across the river.
This is one of the most idyllic bays in Western Australia. I’ve been here several times and each time the colours take my breath away. The array of blues and greens of the ocean contrasting with the white sand is mesmerising. This time the weather wasn’t perfect, the wind was blowing and the water rather choppy but that didn’t take away from the beauty of the place.
One of the big attractions here is that you can get up very close to the stingrays who, for some reason, wander right into the surf at the edge of the beach, you can just about hand feed them.
- You can just make out the stingray here
This little town at the mouth of the Blackwood River is where I spent many camping holidays as a teenager and a then again a few years later when my own children were young. We would pitch the tents in Turner’s Caravan Park by the banks of the river and spend hours fishing, both from the beach and up the river in dad’s boat.
Little has changed over the years and this is one of the safest places for the little ones when it comes to splashing about in the water. For the older ones there’s also kayaks to hire and exploring to be done when they make it across to the other side of the river.
The area around the appropriately named Caves Road that runs down the coast is riddled with caves. The last time I was here I took a guided tour down the Lakes Cave but this time we opted for a self guided tour through the Mammoth Cave. It was amazing and the favourite thing that we did according to Emily, the youngest member of our family.
We were supplied with earphones and a commentary on the discovery and nature of these caves and the children were able to go at their own pace and wonder at the stalagmites and stalactites and all the amazing rock formations deep underground.