A favourite for family fishing holidays and sightseeing, Augusta is now also becoming a mecca for adventure.
World-class windsurfing, kite-surfing, paddling, snorkelling and whale watching are some of the main Augusta attractions. The town is sheltered by Flinders Bay and overlooks the tranquil Hardy Inlet.
Outlying the town is spectacular rugged coastal scenery with the treacherous seas of the Southern Ocean. Augusta is the most south-western town in Australia and is nearby to Boranup Forest, Jewel Cave and Hamelin Bay. Augusta attractions also include the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse which stands as a guardian for the passing ships. It is a working lighthouse offering tours to the top where there are amazing views of the Southern and Indian oceans. The lighthouse marks the start (or end) of the coastal walking trail, the 135km Cape to Cape Track and is nearby to the fossilised water wheel.
Augusta whale watching in Flinders Bay is fantastic from June to August as it is the first stopping point for many southern right and humpback whales that come to feed, breed and play. Other nearby attractions include Jewel Cave, Hamelin Bay and the Boranup Forest.
Hotels, holiday parks, camping, cottages, apartments and bed and breakfast offer superb accommodation options.
Did you know? Augusta has the last fish and chips before you get to Antarctica!
Our Top 5 Things to Do in Augusta
1. Climbing Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse – the tallest on mainland Australia overlooking the point where two oceans meet.
2. Jewel Cave, it’s seriously awe-inspiring and is less than 10 minutes’ drive from Augusta.
3. Watching whales – with 35,000 passing along this coastline, Augusta becomes a whale highway from June – August.
4. Driving through the majestic Boranup Karri Forest, home to the third tallest tree species in the world.
5. The Hardy Inlet and Blackwood River – full of dolphins, birdlife and fish, and perfect for watersports.
The Augusta Boat Harbour is the only established boating facility located along the 430 kilometres of coastline between Busselton and Albany that can provide safe, short term facilities for commercial and recreational boats.
History of Augusta
The south west coast from Point Nuyts (Walpole) to Hamelin Bay (near Augusta) was first seen by early explorers in 1622 from the Dutch ship the Leeuwin. Then expeditions by French explorers of De Freycinet, D’Entrecasteaux, Baudin and Hamelin came in the late 18th to early 19th century.
Captain Matthew Flinders charted the south west coast from 1801 to 1803 and proved that Cape Leeuwin was part of the mainland. Flinders dropped off some early settlers and Augusta became Western Australia’s third settlement. Augusta was founded in 1830.
A timber empire was established in the late 1800’s and with the increase in ship traffic; the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse was constructed in 1895-1896. Show caves were opened to tourists in the early 1900’s and the group settlement scheme saw the population of Augusta-Margaret River increase ten-fold in ten years (1919 – 1921) from around 200 to 2400 people. An abalone industry was established out of Augusta in the 1960’s, which is about when the town got electricity! Fishing and tourism industries grew.
After almost three years of construction, the $36.47 million Augusta Maritime Facility (located near historic Cape Leeuwin) was officially opened in November 2014.
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