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Mice Net : October 2008
western australia story By Johanna Mc IdEas itinerary Kinnon Interested In a post-tourIng optIon? Here we have some ideas to whet your appetite. P erth and Western Australia offer so much in terms of post- touring options for conference groups. How about a dolphin- themed two-day adventure? Day one The first days starts from Perth and heads south to the coastal town of Rockingham in search of dolphins. Rockingham is located 45 minutes from the WA capital and offers beautiful beaches, water sports and interactive dolphin activities. Rockingham’s waters have been home to the same group of dolphins for more than 50 years with locals proud of their 150-plus bottlenose pod. Swimming tours depart from the Rockingham jetty early every morning with frolicking with these beautiful creatures well worth the early morning wake-up call. And if you don’t want to get in the water there are also specialist dolphin tour charters that leave Rockingham’s yacht club jetty daily. The best time to see these beautiful marine creatures is between September and May. After all of the excitement on and in the water it’s time for lunch at one of the area’s many cafes before the 20 minute drive to Mandurah. Mandurah is a unique blend of bushland, coast, industry and an inner-city metropolis. And there is much to explore here as well, with swimming, diving, sailing and windsurfing all on offer. Sampling the local seafood and wine is a must and a great way to relax after a day of fun activities. There are a range of accommodation options available. Depending on the needs of your group facilities include resorts, motels, villas and even houseboats. 94 mice.net Day Two After a filling breakfast at your hotel it’s time for the one hour and 15 minute drive to Bunbury. Located south of Mandurah, Bunbury is another popular coastal area for dolphins that can be spotted year- round. Bunbury’s Koombana Bay is home to the Dolphin Discovery Centre where groups can float and snorkel with dolphins for a truly amazing experience. Once participants have had their fill you can dry-off and explore Bunbury’s town centre which is plentiful with art galleries, pubs and contemporary boutiques, and is sure to have something to interest everyone. A popular attraction is the black and white chequered lighthouse which was built in 1959. For the history buffs, be sure to stop off at the old railway station for a look into the town’s past. For those who would prefer to literally do nothing, relax on Victoria Street for a cup of coffee and recoup. The new waterside café area is another great spot to take in the surroundings before heading back to Perth. This is just a sample of one activity-based post-conference option. There is a huge variety of activities to choose from. Indeed, the problem may be in deciding how to choose just one. For more information about activities available be sure to contact the Western Australian Visitors Bureau who can point you in the right direction. For Rockingham Wild Encounters, email info@ rockinghamwildencounters.com.au. Bottlenose dolphin off the Rockingham Coast. Photo courtesy of Tourism Western Australia.