History & Heritage

Immerse yourself in history and culture in Your Margaret River Region. Discover that the South West region is one of the world’s earliest continually inhabited areas with an Aboriginal history dating back over 50,000 years.

Walk along coastline that was first seen by Dutch explorers in 1622 and then charted by the British in 1801-1803. Hear how the Brits dropped off some early settlers in Augusta, creating Western Australia’s third settlement. Go to places named after the French explorers who were also busy charting parts of the region from the 1800’s to early 1900’s.

Visit some of the historic houses of the early settlers in Ellensbrook (near Margaret River) and Wonnerup (near Busselton).

Learn how agricultural and timber exporting empires emerged. Walk along the historical 1.8 kilometre Busselton Jetty or climb to the top of Cape Leeuwin and Cape Naturaliste lighthouses which were built to service the new industries.

Go into the show caves that started tourism in the early 1900’s and learn about the population explosion due to the Group Settlement Scheme in the 1920’s.

Watch or surf the breaks that enticed so many surfers to the region from the 1960’s.

Taste wine from the first commercial vineyard which was established in 1967 and discover the history of Margaret River wine.

6 Fun Facts about our History

  1. The original 165 metre long Busselton Jetty was built in 1865. Ten years later 131 metres was added due to sand drift. After ninety years and 1.8 kilometres later, it was finally deemed long enough!
  2. The Ballaarat Engine was WA’s first steam locomotive and is the oldest surviving example of a steam locomotive built in Australia.
  3. Surfers flocked to the region in the 1960’s and in the 1970’s the emergence of the wine industry suddenly provided them an abundance of casual employment. Rumour has it that they’d only turn up if the sea breeze was in!
  4. Busselton was named after the early settlers the Bussell family; however the Bussell’s were not consulted and preferred the name Capel (after their relative in England, Capel Carter). A town named Capel was later established to the north of Busselton.
  5. Although Augusta was Western Australia’s third settlement andwas founded in 1830, the town didn’t get electricity until the 1960’s!
  6. It is well-known that the first commercial vineyard was established in 1967 by Dr Cullity and named Vasse Felix Estate. It is lesser known that the first grapes were grown in Cowaramup by an enterprising fellow, Mr Jimmy Meleri, sometime before 1917 when he produced his first wine and sold bottles at local dances.
Busselton Jetty 1915

Your Margaret River Region History & Heritage Experiences

What’s Hot

The latest ideas for discovering Art & Wellbeing experiences

Arts & WellbeingNature & Environment
16/08/2017

A place of love

Refresh and recharge at Premalaya, the Margaret River region's newest wellness retreat. By Tom De Souza. When Hayley and Scott Lane bought their Yallingup bush block four years ago, there was nothing but a shack and a rat-infested shed. Since then, the Lane family have…
Read More
CinefestOZ Directors Chair at Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, Margaret River
Arts & Wellbeing
19/06/2017

Stars of the silver screen

Celebrate 10 years of CinefestOZ Film Festival this August with a jam-packed program of Australian and international cinema, sidebar events and spectacular galas. We find out more about this Busselton-born festival from festival chair and co-founder, Helen Shervington. YMRR: What exactly is CinefestOZ Film Festival?…
Read More
Arts & Wellbeing
23/12/2016

Movies under the stars: Your outdoor cinema roundup

Summer wouldn't be summer without being able to lie back under the stars to watch a movie with a glass of Margaret River wine. It seems that we can't get enough of the outdoor movie scene in Your Margaret River Region - what began as…
Read More
Stars on red carpet in Bunbury for CinéfestOz
Arts & Wellbeing
19/07/2016

Star Quality: Who will you spot at this year’s CinefestOZ Film Festival?

The best of the best in the film industry will be out in force, lured by the unbeatable locations and the richest film prize in the country - $100,000 for the festival’s best movie. A little context for my excitement at the forthcoming CinefestOZ Film…
Read More
Arts & Wellbeing
08/06/2016

Rock star jewellers

Words: Beverly Ligman Margaret River is sometimes referred to as the Jewel of the Cape so it’s no surprise then that there are plenty of talented artisans in its midst. NINA’S - Dunsborough Nina’s ethos is pretty simple. They want to make pieces for their…
Read More
Arts & WellbeingActive & Adventure
03/04/2016

‘Kidspo’ – All the inspiration you need for the autumn school holidays

It is autumn school holidays and perfect outdoor weather for keeping the kids active and engaged with things to do in Your Margaret River Region. To make the school holiday planning easy we have collated a top selection of ‘things to do this April school…
Read More

Insiders’ Information

Make the most of your holiday with our tips and tools

Accommodation

Choose from hotels, resorts, farmstays, guesthouses and self-contained apartments for the perfect place to stay.

Restaurants & Cafes

With 100 restaurants and cafes to choose from, start planning your holiday dining experiences.

Beaches

Explore the secluded bays and great swimming and surfing beaches along the coastline of Your Margaret River Region.

Questions?

Contact Your Margaret River Region experts 7 days per week. Email or call (08) 9780 5911.

Upcoming Events, News and Travel Deals Subscribe