Armchair Travelling Contos

9 Virtual Experiences to Get your Margaret River Region Fix

We’ve gathered nine of the best virtual experiences in the Margaret River Region for you to partake in from your favourite armchair.

Missing encounters with nature, tasting Margaret River wines, or perusing the work of the region’s local artisans?

If your daily suburban stroll isn’t quite enough, we’ve gathered nine of the best virtual experiences for you to partake in from your favourite armchair. Pour yourself a cuppa or a glass of vino, and welcome to the Margaret River Region.

Let’s distance ourselves from each other today, so we can welcome each other more warmly tomorrow.

Bettenays Nougat Margaret River

Food & Wine

Bettenay’s Wine & Nougat

Wine tasting from home. It’s a thing, and in this new world, it’s a must-do.

Bettenay’s Wine & Nougat have adapted quickly into the virtual tasting space and they’ve established a pretty seamless process. Once you sign up for an event, you’ll be sent six 100ml bottles of wine or liqueur, two nougat flavours, and tasting notes. From there you can login to the zoom link and take part with a group of friends, your isolation family, or on your own.

Greg Bettenay will have you thinking you’re among the vines of the Margaret River Region. He’ll take you through a walk around the nougat kitchen and to where the grapes grow, sharing the same knowledge he imparted with his students back when he was a lecturer in viticulture. Greg will have you laughing and feeling completely comfortable while you sip, taste and enjoy the flavours of the region

So leave the car keys on the hook (no designated driver needed), frock up, and select your tour group. It’s that easy.

Charlotte Newton Wine

For those located within the region and feeling like upskilling their wine knowledge, Charlotte Newton Wines are offering online wine courses via the zoom webinar platform. It’s the perfect Friday afternoon isolation activity. Charlotte is a winemaking lecturer at South West Regional TAFE and her wine and spirit education skills are definitely up to snuff.

Charlotte will deliver the tastings to your door prior to each session.

Whale Watching Margaret River Region

Nature

Whale Watch Western Australia

As we head into whale season, you might be wishing you were coastal bound for Flinders Bay Augusta – where the Southern Rights and Humpbacks can be spotted between July through to September. Whale Watch Western Australia have allowed you to get up close and personal to the whales from the comfort of your isolated couch or home office. In this virtual tour, they introduce you to Pearl – a white whale (fun fact – only 4% of calves born in the Southern Right population are white!) Enjoy the story of Pearl while you plan your next trip into the whale-derness.

Busselton Jetty Tours

If you’re looking for a bit of escapism or want to take the kids on a virtual holiday, then take a look at the virtual offerings from the Busselton Jetty. There is everything from Marine Workshops, 360 degree virtual reality tours, and jetty train tours for the kids.

The live-streamed virtual tours will take you to the depths of the sea, through the different levels of the Underwater Observatory. A Q&A with the Jetty’s marine science team is additionally satisfying for the nature nerd within.

And if the kids are stuck at home with you, just get them onto a mini-train tour 1.7km out to sea. You’ll get a history of the Busselton Jetty and Geographe Bay, and they’ll love the virtual adventure.

Ngilgi Cave

Tours of Ngilgi cave are being shared virtually through Tourism WA’s Facebook page. The video shares a didgeridoo performance by local Cultural Custodian and Wadandi man, Josh Whiteland, who runs Koomal Dreaming tours at Ngilgi. By being able to navigate 360 degrees around the screen, you’ll feel as if you are standing amid the landscape of stalagmites in the enormous show cave.

Ngilgi Cave cracks another mention in Tourism WA’s ‘Postcards from our Backyard’ series, where Josh also shows you ‘How to make a fire’ – perfect upskilling for the winter months ahead if you are camping in your backyard!

Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse

If getting underground isn’t your thing, why not check out the region’s tallest above ground attraction? Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse welcomed it’s world class interpretive centre at the end of 2019. The interpretive space is housed in one of the original lighthouse keeper cottages on the site and spreads across the four main rooms and enclosed verandah. The exhibition itself houses artefacts, short stories, interactive technology and a large-scale animated film, allowing visitors to encounter fascinating stories about the men, women and children who once lived at the tallest lighthouse in mainland Australia.

Some of the interactive experiences they have developed at Cape Leeuwin include a touchscreen that allows visitors to test their skills as a lighthouse keeper by practicing Morse Code, the installation of a historical piano that has seen service in six lighthouses across Australia and which periodically bursts into song without warning, and, for the more inquisitive, a portrait wall that comes to life as you approach.

Art & Culture

Yallingup Galleries

The art world has been far from immune to the chaos of Covid-19. It’s an industry that is as much about connectedness as it is solitude and while exhibitions and galleries are at a stand still, it’s exciting to think what incredible art is being made by all those local artisans who are able to stop and create in this forced downtime. Yallingup Galleries Easter Exhibition is available for viewing online.

If you are in the region and want to attend a private viewing you can get in touch.

Yallingup Galleries

Margaret River Open Studios

Right now, visitors to the Margaret River Region would have been gearing up for the annual Margaret River Open Studios, where the eclectic independent spaces of the region’s artists are opened up to the public. It’s a beautiful voyeuristic experience into the studios of the artists themselves, and offers the character behind the artwork.

But since these spaces are abruptly out of bounds, the next best thing (and it really is truly worth it), is going online to watch a series of short films exploring these artists and their spaces. Personal favourites include Ian Mutch, Gerry Reilly, Leon Pericles and Rebecca Cool.

Premalaya Yoga

Mental health and wellness is suddenly an area we all paying a little bit more attention to. And the folks at Premalaya are doing their bit to keep you physically and emotionally in tune. They are live streaming some yoga sessions where you are encouraged to wear your PJs and zen out.

Follow their Facebook group for updates on sessions.