Your Margaret River Region is home to some of the most famous and stunning beaches on earth. Many world class events are held here including fishing, surfing, swimming, triathlon and boating competitions. There are also some beautiful and unique places to go diving and snorkelling in the area.
If it’s clean, clear and calm family friendly swimming beaches you’re after, you are spoiled for choice! Below are a few of my favourites.
Bunker Bay, Dunsborough
Bunker Bay is a stunning piece of coastline just outside of Dunsborough.
The long stretch of beach is strikingly beautiful with pearly white sands and turquoise blue clear water framed by rugged green bushland.
Most of the time Bunker Bay is pretty shallow and calm but it can get rough sometimes so during the summer months there are surf life savers patrolling the beach.
Bunker Bay is a popular place for wedding’s because it is so peaceful and photogenic; couples often have their ceremony on the beach and their reception at the luxury Pullman Bunker Bay Resort and Vie Spa or Bunkers Beach café.
Bunkers Beach Café, Dunsborough
If you want to enjoy a meal while overlooking a spectacular beach you can’t go past Bunkers Beach Café. It is very close to the seaside while still being protected by a little sand dune and native bushland.
Bunkers Beach Café is family friendly with kid’s meals, colouring in, high chairs and baby change facilities and dogs are also welcome at the outside tables.
Busselton Foreshore, Busselton
One of the most popular places for families to go swimming in Your Margaret River Region is at the Busselton Foreshore. During the warmer months the beach is shallow, clear and calm – almost like glass.
My three year old is afraid of even the littlest waves and this is one of his favourite places to swim.
At the beach there is a little jetty with ladders, which people like to walk along or jump off. It is on the left hand side of the grand historic Busselton Jetty and Underwater Observatory (pictured below).
People come from all over the world to walk along the Busselton Jetty or ride the Jetty Train to the end to check out the awesome Underwater Observatory which showcases Australia’s Greatest Artificial Reef.
Aquatastic, a big inflatable water playground, can often be found further up along the beach on the left hand side of both jetties usually during summer school holidays.
There is so much to do at the Foreshore, especially for families, it’s a must visit destination when you are in the area.
The Foreshore is very thought out and there are still upgrades and new additions being added on as I am writing this article. It is also very well maintained, modern and clean with fantastic facilities.
The whole way along the foreshore there is a brilliant wide path; great for bikes, scooters, prams or a leisurely scenic walk. On the left hand side there is a huge car park, with stairs down to the beach, water fountains, BBQ facilities, landscaped gardens, sheltered tables and seating.
On busy days you will often find an assortment of food trucks in this area and one of Gelato Buonissimo shiny gelato carts.
Next to the carpark there is a large sheltered playground with views of the ocean and more BBQ’s tables, seating and water fountains. Behind the playground is another carpark with an electric charging station and public toilets.
There is no shortage of food at the Foreshore; it is home the Goose Café Beach Bar + Kitchen, the Equinox Cafe and two takeaway style counters that sell local produce like Simmo’s and Millers ice cream.
On the right hand side of the Busselton Jetty the newest addition to the foreshore has just been built, a huge skate park. There is a lot more exciting new things being built at the Foreshore, watch this space for further updates.
Cowaramup Bay, Gracetown
Nestled in the peaceful coastal community of Gracetown lies the tranquil Cowaramup Bay.
On the left hand side of the bay is a car park and the beach and on the right hand side there is another carpark and a boat ramp.
The beach in the bay is calm and quite sheltered from strong winds making it a popular swimming place for families with kids and/or dogs. Cowaramup Bay is great place to go snorkelling and it also has a pontoon a few meters off the shore.
Further out from you can find large swell and some legendary world class surf breaks.
Flinders Bay, Augusta
Located a few minutes’ drive from the Augusta CBD is the picturesque Flinders Bay. It has a grassed area over-looking the water with a playground, swing set, BBQ facilities, picnic tables, seating and public toilets.
The tranquil lagoon below is crystal clear and has a small jetty with stairs that takes you directly into shallow water.
It is not only a fantastic place for kids to go swimming; you will also often see people at Flinders Bay swimming laps and Stand Up Paddle boarding too.
Granny’s Pool, Augusta
Just around the corner from Flinders Bay in Augusta you will find Granny’s Pool. It is located on Leeuwin Road but it can be a bit hard to find, keep your eyes peeled for the sign that is roughly painted on one of the barriers in the car park.
Granny’s Pool would have to be one of the most naturally sheltered and shallow places to go swimming in the region thanks to the formation of rocks that frame the ocean, kind of like a big swimming pool.
Even when the weather is windy and other beaches are a bit rough you can count on Granny’s Pool to still be no more than waist-deep and calm.
Hamelin Bay, Karridale
Your Margaret River Region is full of hidden gems and one of the best I have discovered is Hamelin Bay. On the left hand side of the boat ramp there are the sculpture-like remains of the Hamelin Bay Jetty and on the right hand side is a long stretch of white sandy beach and crystal blue water.
The real treasure is in the shallow waters surrounding the boat ramp; beautiful, wild and friendly Eagle Rays.
They have been hanging out in this area for years, feeding on scraps of fish that people give them when they return from their fishing trips.
Unlike all the other Rays I have seen in the wild, these beautiful creatures are completely undaunted by humans and if you stand ankle deep in the water they will swim right up to you looking for food.
I stood completely still and one Ray come up to me and tickled my
foot; it was one of the most magical moments I have ever experienced.
Some people are brave enough pat the Rays and they love being handfed scraps of freshly caught fish. Just keep in mind that they are wild animals and a protected species; Hamelin Bay is a sanctuary zone for these beautiful creatures and there are big penalties for people that deliberately try to catch or injure them. If you are fishing and accidentally catch a Ray in your net please let it go as gently as you can.
Where to stay: Hamelin Bay Holiday Park
The Hamelin Bay Holiday Park is a little piece of paradise over-looking picturesque Hamelin Bay. Accommodation ranges from camp and caravan sites to cabins and cottages. We
stayed in an ocean villa and I really appreciated cooking in the kitchen and enjoying my meals over calming views of the
bushland and ocean.
The park is shaded by established trees and has a children’s playground, free electric BBQ’s, laundries, amenities blocks, kitchens, clotheslines and more.
Hamelin Bay beach and the friendly local Rays are right in front of the Hamelin Bay Holiday Park, it only took a few minutes to walk from our front door to the sand.
Meelup Beach, Dunsborough
Meelup is one of my favourite beaches in Your Margaret River Region; there is just something so special about it. It is located in the enchanting Meelup Regional Park and is known as the
place of the moon rising by the Wardandi people. The Aboriginal custodians of the area call it that because the full moon appears to rise out of the sea on a few days of the year.
Meelup beach is rare and beautiful treasure because it is located in a bio-diversity hotspot and it faces north east which protects it from the wind allowing dense bushland, huge trees and grass to grow right down to the water’s edge in some areas.
I love Meelup because my family and I can swim in the calm blue water and play on the golden white sands and then if we want to get out of the sun for a while there is a grassed picnic area with large
shady trees right on the beach.
There are also public toilets and showers and BBQ facilities overlooking the water. During the warmer months surf lifesavers patrol the area and you can usually find a good food truck or two in the carpark.
Yallingup Beach, Yallingup
Magical Yallingup, otherwise known as the place of love is one of the most spectacular places in the region. There is a moment when I am driving alongside the beautiful bushland and then I turn a corner and I see the Yallingup’s glittering ocean that makes my heart surge every time.
My kids love exploring the Yallingup Nature Based Playground; it’s not only fun and interactive but beautifully made to compliment the surroundings.
There is a shaded grassed area next to the playground with picnic tables and on the other side of the beach staircase there are public toilets and showers.
Yallingup is not only a famous surfers paradise it also has a stunning calm lagoon which is perfect for swimming and snorkelling.