Busselton, Western Australia
Walking the Cape to Cape track

Get back to nature on your next trip to Mandalay

May 25, 2020

While your next down south getaway might not look the way it used to, there are still plenty of things to see and do in our amazing region. Not all attractions may be open in their regular capacity so there has never been a better time to enjoy some nature-based activities in our very own backyard! Here are some of our favourite nature-based activities in our region...


Hike a section of the Cape to Cape track

While there are lots of amazing walking tracks in the South West, The Cape to Cape Track is probably the longest and most famous.  The 140-kilometre (five to six-day walk) track traverses along the ridge and beaches of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park following the coast from Cape Naturaliste, Dunsborough to Cape Leeuwin, Augusta.

The Cape to Cape walk takes in amazing views of sea and landscapes. Luckily, you don’t need to do the entire walk in one go! The track can be broken into smaller sections some make excellent half-day and day walks and others offer more rugged and challenging sections. Parts of the track are boardwalk or hard paved to allow access for all levels of fitness and abilities including those using wheelchairs and prams.

Our top pick:

The section of the trail from Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse to Sugar Loaf Rock is ideal for families and those with limited hiking experience. This beautiful section of the track is perfect for a slow, casual walk to enjoy our magnificent coastline. A 7km round trip from the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse car park, you could make a day of it and pack a picnic to enjoy on the way.


Ride a bike along Geographe Bay

One of the best ways to explore the beautiful scenery in Busselton is by bike. Being wonderfully flat means you can enjoy a leisurely cruise from Mandalay all the way into Busselton township to the east and then down to Dunsborough to the west. The Geographe Path runs right past Mandalay’s front entrance so is very easy to access and follow. We currently have a selection of adult bikes for hire, just enquire at our reception when you arrive.

Our top pick:

Enjoy a bike ride into Busselton and enjoy lunch at one of the fantastic restaurants at the base of the Busselton Jetty.


Visit the Caves

There are over 150 limestone caves dotted along the Leeuwin-Naturaliste Ridge in the Margaret River region. From guided tours at the Ngilgi, Lake, and Jewel caves to self-guided tours at Mammoth Cave, there is an option to suit all subterranean adventurers.

Our top pick:

Ngilgi Cave is a good starting point for those wanting to try a cave adventure without having to travel too far. Only half an hour’s drive from Mandalay on Caves Road between Dunsborough and Yallingup, it has a number of different tours on offer, including the ever-popular ‘Adventure Tour’ that gives thrill-seekers a chance to experience underground life in a hard-hat and lamp, and even venture off the boardwalks.


Do a spot of fishing

The crystal clear waters of Geographe Bay offer exceptional, and surprisingly accessible, places to enjoy a spot of fishing. You can catch a variety of fish, including herring and whiting off the sandy, calm beach directly in front of Mandalay. The iconic Busselton Jetty is renowned for being the fisherman’s favourite, with squid and crabs being common catches on the decks of the jetty. If it is a highly prized West Australian Dhufish you are after, you might need to join a fishing charter. The famous annual salmon run off Dunsborough during Autumn is also worth hanging around for!

Our top pick:

It doesn’t get much easier than simply grabbing your fishing rod, a bucket, and some bait from our shop and walking down the beach to catch a feed of whiting. And don’t worry, if you come home empty-handed we can always recommend a great fish and chip shop down the road!


Go birdwatching or possum spotting

There are a number of fantastic trails and birds hides spotted around Busselton and surrounding areas. The Vasse River Delta Wetlands Bird Hide and Interpretive Trail is a great place to start, centrally located in the center of Busselton it features a limestone track to the bird hide, with identification charts so you can know exactly what species of birdlife and fauna you might be seeing. For those looking for wildlife of the cute and furry variety, the Tuart Forest Possum Paths are a great night-time adventure where you will see Western Ringtail and Brushtail Possums in their natural habitat.

Out top pick:

The Western Ringtail Possum is an endangered species that lives in the Peppermint woodlands along Geographe Bay, and we have a very healthy population living in the Peppermint trees at Mandalay. You don’t have to go anywhere, just grab your torch and head from dusk to spot our resident possums in the natural habitat.